Night with the Salem Chapel Underground Railroad Cemetery Project

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Night with the Salem Chapel Underground Railroad Cemetery Project

Salem Chapel Underground Railroad Cemetery Project will restore gravestones of African-American freedom seekers who came to St Catharines.

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Date and time

Location

Lincoln Museum and Cultural Centre 3800 Main Street Lincoln, ON L0R 1S0 Canada

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About this event

  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Mobile eTicket

Join us for a night at the museum with Rochelle Bush, Salem Chapel Trustee and Resident Historian, and Historian Dr. Adam Montgomery to discuss the Salem Chapel Underground Railroad Cemetery Project. This project will restore gravestones of African-American freedom seekers who came to St. Catharines and the surrounding area before the U.S. Civil War via the Underground Railroad and other early Black residents who settled in the region.

February 17, 6:30-9 p.m.

- Live music

- Opening remarks with project discussion beginning at 7 p.m.

- Cash Bar and light food

- Meet and mingle with the project team

Project Details:

Beginning in the spring of 2021, Bush and Montgomery began to locate and identify gravestones of freedom seekers, all in need of restoration work. Their search for these gravesites has resulted in several significant finds, including the gravesite of John Lindsay (1805-1876), a prominent Black business owner, landowner, and brewer, as well as Mary Hutchinson, a freedom seeker and member of Harriet Tubman’s Fugitive Aid Society.

After consulting with cemetery restoration professionals, they are raising funds to hire experts to restore the existing gravestones and provide grave markers for those whose gravesites are currently unmarked. These restorations will help to ensure that the memories and stories of those who escaped enslavement and made a life in St. Catharines will not be forgotten. In some cases, the stories of the freedom seekers will be told for the very first time.

Once the gravestones are restored and memorials are placed for those unmarked, the public will be able to tour the cemetery to reflect on and learn about with the history of the Underground Railroad and the legacy of Black Canadians and their contributions to early Ontario and Canada.