The Museum of African American History is dedicated to preserving, conserving and accurately interpreting the contributions of African Americans in New England from the colonial period through the 19th century.



Annual Meeting Features Performance, Kudos

A crowd assembled at the Museum of African American History on March 18, 2005, for the Annual Meeting and special performance of the life of Ellen Craft. Marita Rivero, Board Chair, reviewed the far-ranging 2004 exhibits and programs noting the landmark Portraits in Black exhibit, the popular Camp Museum: Dig and Discover Black New England, and the Legacy Society reception for College Presidents of Color. Ms. Glendora Putnam gave the annual financial overview, reporting that the Museum of African American History had finished the year just ($8,000) after depreciation.

Executive Director Beverly Morgan-Welch thanked board members, staff, volunteers, members and donors for their support, and introduced the firm of Piper Rudnick LLP to receive a Special Certificate of Appreciation for their on-going donation of legal services to the Museum. On-hand for the presentation of the certificate were Steve Nolan and former Piper Rudnick attorney, Hannah Kilson, a member of the Museum Board of Directors.

Ms. Morgan-Welch presented a second Certificate of Appreciation to volunteer Dr. Marion Kilson. Dr. Kilson researched and read every issue published in the 31-year run of the abolitionist newspaper, The Liberator, and recorded every mention of events or activities at the African Meeting House and Abiel Smith School. Dr. Kilson gave a wonderful talk on her research last October, research that will inform exhibits at the Museum and the Boston Public Library in 2005 and 2006.


Joining the assembled crowd after the completion of the formal meeting was a Cambridge Boy Scout Troop who would be spending the night at the Museum for an Underground Railroad Overnight Adventure. They arrived just in time for Director of Education L’Merchie Frazier to introduce Marcia Estabrook to present The Ellen Craft Story – A Self-Emancipated Woman’s Account of an Unusual Escape.

In December of 1848, Ellen Craft, a light-skinned Georgia slave, dressed herself as a man and boarded a train bound for Savanna. Her husband, William, posed as her slave. Four danger-filled days later they set foot on free soil in Philadelphia, but this was only the beginning of their run for freedom. Their journey continues through Boston, Nova Scotia, and England in a true story filled with danger, narrow escapes, victory and the love between a man and a woman united in their determination to be free.

If you missed the program, find it on the WGBH Forum Network.
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