“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Wilmington in New Castle County, Delaware — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)

Freedom Lost

Freedom Lost Marker image. Click for full size.
By William Pfingsten, August 31, 2008
1. Freedom Lost Marker
Inscription. By the late 1700s the institution of slavery was declining in Delaware. A changing economy and the active efforts of Quakers and Methodists had led to the manumission of many slaves and dramatic growth of the state’s free black population. Though Congress outlawed importation of slaves in 1808, demand for slave labor in the expanding states of the Deep South continued to grow. A nefarious criminal element sought to fill this need by kidnapping free blacks for sale into slavery. Such was the case in Delaware, where countless numbers of innocent persons were abducted and sent to the South via secret networks operated by criminal gangs. The Abolition Society of Delaware worked tirelessly against the practice, and many brave men and women, both black and white, actively opposed the gangs. Among these was Wilmington resident Thomas Garrett, the legendary Underground Railroad conductor who dedicated his life to the abolition of slavery after the abduction of a woman employed by his family. Despite the efforts of Garrett and others, and the enactment of harsh punishments for kidnappers, Delaware’s black residents continued to live in fear for their safety until the Civil War.

This memorial is dedicated to the victims of this evil enterprise, and those who struggled against it.
Erected 2004 by
Area of Freedom Lost Marker image. Click for full size.
By William Pfingsten, August 31, 2008
2. Area of Freedom Lost Marker
Delaware Public Archives. (Marker Number NC-128.)
Location. 39° 44.231′ N, 75° 33.223′ W. Marker is in Wilmington, Delaware, in New Castle County. Marker is at the intersection of S. Main Street and King Street, on the right when traveling east on S. Main Street. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Wilmington DE 19801, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Great Railroad Boom (within shouting distance of this marker); Frank Furness Railroad District (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); Delaware's Jewish Community (approx. 0.2 miles away); Old Farmers Bank (approx. 0.2 miles away); Thomas Garrett (approx. ¼ mile away); Lincoln's Speech (approx. ¼ mile away); Asbury Methodist Episcopal Church (approx. ¼ mile away); Brown v. Board of Education (approx. 0.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Wilmington.
Categories. Abolition & Underground RRAfrican AmericansCharity & Public WorkNotable EventsNotable Persons
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on September 1, 2008, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland. This page has been viewed 2,201 times since then and 3 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on September 1, 2008, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland.
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