A Grain of Sand

Series produced by Charles McGuigan

Caption: PRX default Series image
PRX default Series image 

Weekly series featuring real stories that spring from the well of memory. Every narrative illuminates our shared human experience. At least that's the hope of producer Charles McGuigan.

I want to achieve the effect of a short story but told in a way that makes the listener feel part of evolving action.I love stories and believe narrative that flows directly from the well of experience illuminates like arc light, strikes with the force of iron.


150 Pieces

Order by: Newest First | Oldest First
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Billed as the world's shortest woman, Gloria Rhoden, who was working the Virginia State Fair, talked about the nature of true beauty.

  • Added: Mar 10, 2009
  • Length: 27:08
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Ethel-Barnett Johnson became Lady E sixteen years ago when her son Bubbie died unexpectedly.

  • Added: Mar 11, 2009
  • Length: 28:08
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Second part of the Lady E story, how tragedy transformed this woman sixteen years ago.

  • Added: Mar 11, 2009
  • Length: 28:06
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Peter Wolf Toth of Edgewater, Florida has spent more than thirty years carving giant statues of Indians across America.

  • Added: Mar 11, 2009
  • Length: 28:52
Caption: Maureen and Lucky Cole, Credit: Charles McGuigan
Maureen and Lucky Cole are two of the only two human inhabitants of the Everglades. They've carved out their own Eden. And fig leafs, at least for ...

  • Added: Apr 03, 2009
  • Length: 29:13
Caption: Comedian Steve Moore, Credit: John K. MacLellan
AIDS survivor Steve Moore was one of the first comedians in the international limelight to bring laughter to this devastating illness.

Bought by KVSC, WTJU, KRCB-FM "Radio 91", and KVSC


  • Added: Apr 03, 2009
  • Length: 28:41
  • Purchases: 4
Caption: Comedian Steve Moore, Credit: John K. MacLellan
Steve Moore is a comedian and after contracting AIDS he started laughing at the disease which propelled him into the international limelight. He la...

Bought by KRCB-FM "Radio 91" and KVSC


  • Added: Apr 03, 2009
  • Length: 28:39
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: Jay Ipson in front of the Virginia Holocaust Museum., Credit: John K. MacLellan
Jay Ipson is the original survivor. He and his mother and father escaped selections in the the Kuvna ghetto in Lithuania. When Nazis tightened the ...

Bought by Remix Radio


  • Added: Apr 09, 2009
  • Length: 27:52
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Jay Ipson in front of the Virginia Holocaust Museum., Credit: John K. MacLellan
Jay Ipson and his family escaped Nazi persecution often by the skin of their teeth. But after liberation they had to contend with the Soviets. And ...

Bought by Remix Radio


  • Added: Apr 09, 2009
  • Length: 28:05
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Jay Ipson in front of the Virginia Holocaust Museum., Credit: John K. MacLellan
The Ip family had escaped both the Nazis and the Soviets. Once in the United States, Israel Ip carved out a life for his family. Jay married, took ...

Bought by Remix Radio


  • Added: Apr 09, 2009
  • Length: 27:47
  • Purchases: 1
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Rolanda Scott is a glass sculptor. But she also molds young minds as an art instructor. About eight years ago she was diagnosed with breast cancer ...

  • Added: Jun 19, 2009
  • Length: 28:20
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Rolanda Scott, an art teacher and glass sculptor, has had one bout of cancer after another for the past eight years. When her time comes Rolanda's ...

  • Added: Jun 22, 2009
  • Length: 29:23
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For three generations, Sammy Marques’ family was stuck in a sort of revolving door of emigration from Europe to the United States and back again. I...

  • Added: Sep 18, 2009
  • Length: 28:28
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Sammy Marques, descended from Portuguese seamen, was expatriated from his native America by his missionary father. When he returned stateside he ma...

  • Added: Sep 18, 2009
  • Length: 27:20
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Sammy Marques tells stories, one-man-shows that last an hour and more. The stories within the bigger stories are chapters of his life. And becaus...

  • Added: Oct 12, 2009
  • Length: 25:28
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Sammy Marques learned how to do warm-ups. He learned how to read a room, how to ingratiate himself to the audience. But it all gets back to the sto...

  • Added: Oct 12, 2009
  • Length: 25:27
Caption: PRX default Piece image
Richmond Virginia's Folk Festival led to the creation of a sister city relationship with Segou, Mali. In time, these two cities will be exchanging ...

  • Added: Oct 30, 2009
  • Length: 27:41
Caption: Mattie River
Mattie River looked like a puppy when we first found her. She was small and frightened, could barely stand on her own paws. Her wants seemed so ins...

  • Added: Jun 30, 2011
  • Length: 25:56
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Edward Harden Peeples V was a racist practically from birth. But once out of the orbit of Richmond, Virginia, he went through a transformation whic...

  • Added: Feb 15, 2012
  • Length: 55:38
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A bell tower that has been mute for 70 years at Virginia Union University in Richmond, Virginia is about to get a voice thanks to Diane Watkins.

  • Added: Feb 16, 2012
  • Length: 55:55