The Little Prince

You Have To See This Footage Of 11-Year-Old Prince Advocating For Teachers’ Rights

Footage from April 1970 shows a young Prince supporting Minneapolis Public Schools teachers during a strike.

Minnesota journalists found rare footage of Prince at age 11, pictured here in his New Girl cameo.
FOX/FOX Image Collection/Getty Images

It’s hard to believe that we lost Prince nearly six years ago on April 21, 2016. Since his untimely death, fans have been luckily enough to get further glimpses into the icon’s life with three posthumous albums and an autobiography.

Today, fans got another treat with this unearthed footage that shows an 11-year-old Prince Nelson, aka “Skipper,” being interviewed during a teachers’ strike in 1970.

Journalists at CBS 4 WCCO in Minnesota started digging through their archives to find footage of Minneapolis Public School educators striking to give additional context to a strike by educators in the same district last month. When station producer Matt Liddy came across a particular clip of a reporter interviewing a young boy, he couldn’t believe his eyes. He started showing the video to his colleagues, who all saw the same thing: a very young Prince Nelson.

In the actual clip, the interviewer asks Prince if the other kids are in favor of the teachers’ strike, to which he replies, “Yup.” The young Prince then adds, “I think they should get a better education too cause, um, and I think they should get some more money cause they work, they be working extra hours for us and all that stuff.”

The staff at CBS 4 tracked down people to confirm whether or not the footage was, in fact, of Prince. Kristen Zschomler, a Minneapolis-based historian and Prince fan, confirmed that the footage was shot at the same time Prince would have been 11. The reporters also spoke to Terrance Jackson, a childhood friend and member of Prince’s first band Grand Central, who confirmed his identity.

While the footage doesn’t feature any prodigious moments of musical talent, it does go to show you how connected Prince was with his community — and how he supported his local educators.

“I think just seeing Prince as a young child in his neighborhood school, you know, it helps really ground him to that Minneapolis connection,” Zschomler said. “Even if they’re momentary glimpses into what Minneapolis meant to him, what he stood up for when he lived in Minneapolis, just helps understand that symbiotic connection he had to his hometown.”

Watch the entire clip and and investigation below.