A never-before-seen photo of Frederick Douglass, a bronze maquette of Thomas Ball’s Freedmen’s Memorial, a document written by a medium under trance, and the sketchbooks of Civil War soldiers are a few items in the historically rich exhibit. One notable artifact in the exhibit, loaned from the Library Company of Philadelphia, is a Lincoln manuscript from July, 1862—a proclamation predating the Emancipation Proclamation. The artifact exemplifies the significance of “the many small steps that preceded and then followed the Proclamation” and finally resolved with the 13th Amendment. But the exhibit gives a much broader view of emancipation than the Proclamation alone or the man who wrote it. “We were determined to focus on putting the Emancipation Proclamation into a broad context that recognizes the contributions of many, including the enslaved themselves,” said Clayton Lewis, curator of the exhibit. So, the exhibit displays letters, diaries, and portraits of common people: soldiers, citizens, and slaves themselves. This is a rare opportunity to see not only great documents and photographs, but artifacts of ordinary people, too. Dr. Lewis and Professor Jones will guide you through the exhibit and answer your questions first-hand. Register here.
Clayton Lewis, Martha Jones