Douglass Speech Is Reminder That Not Everyone Is Free
Steve Myrick
The words of Frederick Douglass rang out from the Federated Church in Edgartown Tuesday, as readers recited the abolitionist orator’s famous speech.
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Grace Church Honored as African American Heritage Trail Site
Holly Pretsky
On Sunday Grace Church became the 28th site on the African American Heritage Trail.
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Grace Church Added to African American Heritage Trail

The Grace Episcopal Church in Vineyard Haven is set to become the newest site on the African American Heritage Trail of Martha’s Vineyard.

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Pioneering Nurse Is Newest Addition to African American Heritage Trail
Steve Myrick
Family, friends, and neighbors gathered Friday in Oak Bluffs to dedicate the home of Anne P. Jennings as the newest site on the African American Heritage Trail of Martha's Vineyard.
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African American Heritage to Dedicate New Site

The African American Heritage Trail of Martha’s Vineyard will dedicate its 27th site on Friday Nov. 24.

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Honoring Our African-American History
Elaine Cawley-Weintraub
The African American Heritage Trail of Martha’s Vineyard has united communities and augmented the rich fabric of the Island’s history.
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Ceremonies at Shearer Cottage Dedicate Historic Site on African American Trail
Ethan Kelley
Shearer Cottage in Oak Bluffs was the first inn on Martha’s Vineyard, and among the first in the nation, to be owned by and cater to black people. It now has been dedicated to the man for who founded the inn, and is a key stop on the Vineyard’s Heritage Trail.
 
Named for Charles Shearer, the cottage is the culmination of this man’s journey to prosperity.
 
Charles Shearer was born into slavery in Virginia. During the Civil War he assisted Union soldiers as a hunter, and in turn received his freedom.
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Heritage Trail: Island Project Shows Story of Black History
Yvonne Guzman
In the Waterview Farm area of Oak Bluffs is a boulder as tall as a man. Back in the 1790s, the Rev. John Saunders de­livered his sermons here, from atop “Pulpit Rock.” Mr. Saunders, who was African-American, was one of the first people to preach Methodism on Martha’s Vineyard.
 
But for anyone who doesn’t know the story, this is just a rock in an Oak Bluffs subdiyision.
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Heritage Trail Honors for Emma Maitland
Alex Floyd

A group of residents and visitors gathered on Dukes County Avenue Sunday to commemorate the life and legacy of Emma Chambers Maitland, a woman of many talents, by marking her home as the 26th site on the African American Heritage Trail.

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New Principal Joins Students for Walk Through Island History
Sydney Bender
The African American Heritage Trail field trip is a staple of the high school's history curriculum. This year, the high school's new principal joined teacher Elaine Weintraub and her freshman students for the tour of Island history.
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