Leo Beuerman was born in 1902, enclosed in a twisted, crippled body that would commonly be described as grotesque, ugly, and repulsive. He was a dwarf, 36 inches in height, weight 50 pounds, unable to walk, who maneuvered himself around on a square wooden platform fitted with casters at each corner. At fifty years of age, he began selling pencils and other wares in downtown Lawrence, Kansas from a small red wooden cart he made that resembled a crude kiddie car. For 16 years, he drove a specially rigged tractor, hoisted himself into his cart and pushed it with his arms and hands down the sidewalk to his place of business in front of the Woolworth Department store.
Leo Beuerman: A Legacy Trailer
A bronze plaque on a sidewalk in Lawrence, Kansas, says of Leo Beuerman: “Remember Me, I’m that little Man gone blind. I used to sell Pencils on the street Corner.” Five years before he died in 1974, Leo A. Beuerman was the subject of a documentary film that still resonates, and that allows us all to honor his wish to be remembered. “Leo Beuerman” tells the story of a man with severe disabilities who refused to succumb to self-pity or fear, and who maintained and shared a positive outlook toward life and toward his fellow man. It’s a heartwarming, motivational program that can highlight any discussion about disabilities, and can contribute to better understanding for people with disabilities and those who live with and around them. The film’s many honors include a nomination for an Academy Award.
13 Minute Film • 33 Minutes Special Features • Release Year: 1969
Special Features Reel
Special Features Include:
Three Lessons (5 Minutes)
Filmmaker Jim Payne discusses the three lessons he has learned in dealing with special needs persons generally, and Leo Beuerman specifically.
Memorabilia (7 Minutes)
Jim Payne reads excepts from Leo Beuerman’s autobiography. Footage courtesy of Watkins Community Museum of History, Lawrence, Kansas.
A Conversation (12 Minutes)
Craig Weinaug, a close friend of Leo Beuerman, discusses his friendship with Leo as well as living with a disabilities in general.
TV Interviews (9 Minutes)
The first excerpt discusses the film being nominated for an Academy Award. The second excerpt shows an interview with Catherine Weinaug who shares her experiences with Leo.
Our website offers the original Leo Beuerman film along with brand new special features including interviews and a reading from Leo’s autobiography. We have mastered this new content together in a package called “Leo Beuerman: A Legacy”. You may purchase this amazing story on DVD and digital download below.
Awards and Nominations
Best Educational and Best of Festival, National Visual Communications Association
Chris Statuette, Columbus Film Festival
Blue Ribbon, American Film Festival
Cindy Award, Information Film Producers Association
Gold Medal, International Film and TV Festival of New York
CINE Golden Eagle
Best Film Award, American Personnel and Guidance Film Festival
Silver Medal, Atlanta Film Festival
Meritorious Film of the Year, Landers Associates
International Festival, Nyon, Switzerland, U.S.A Entry
Adelaide-Auckland International Film Festival, U.S.A Entry
Golden Decade Award, U.S. Industrial Film Festival
One of the ten best films of the decade – U.S. Industrial Film Festival
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Leo Beuerman: A Legacy (DVD)
Living With Dignity Collection (DVD)