The Edmonson Sisters sculpted by Erik Blome In “Heroes of the Underground Railroad in Alexandria and D.C. in the 19th Century,” Dr. Jenny Masur, National Capital Region Manager of the National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom, will conduct an engaging discussion of the Underground Railroad in Alexandria and in Washington, D.C.
How many times have you driven past the 10 foot-tall bronze statue of two African American women on Duke Street and wondered what it signified? Join the Alexandria Historical Socety at this lecture and discover the story behind sisters Emily and Mary Edmonson, daughters of a free black man and enslaved woman who attempted to escape to freedom aboard the Pearl in 1848 with nearly 80 other enslaved people. The teenaged girls were captured and transferred to the Bruin Slave Pen on Duke Street, once located where their statue now stands. With help from their father and abolitionists including Harriet Beecher Stowe their freedom was purchased and they were rescued from a life of slavery.
Dr. Jenny Masur has worked on the National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom program for 13 years. She will also discuss an escape from Alexandria Harbor on a ship called the Regulator and the story of Leonard Grimes, a man who was prosecuted for assisting freedom seekers. Dr. Masur, a 1990 and 2004 Fulbright Professor and expert on the Underground Railroad in the National Capital Region, will introduce the audience to the National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom and its definition of the Underground Railroad as “resistance to slavery through flight,” whether by sea or by land.