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Henry B. Freeman

In the early 19th century, New Bedford provided many opportunities in the maritime industry that appealed to formerly enslaved people across the Diaspora. Joining the crew of a whaling ship was especially attractive, as the long voyages at sea could help formerly enslaved men avoid recapture. One such crew member was Henry B. Freeman. Born in Smithfield, North Carolina, he arrived in New Bedford during the 1830s.

New Bedford Wharf

Cato Freedom

A soldier in the Revolutionary War, Cato Freedom applied for an Army pension in the 1820s. The documentation from his application provides rare first hand insight into the post-war life of a Black Revolutionary soldier.

Cato Freeman headstone

Dr. Theodore J Becker and Martin F Becker

From their birth in the Dutch Colony of Suriname, to their service in two different Massachusetts regiments, to their influential careers in medicine and politics, follow the story of two brothers who volunteered their skills during the Civil War.

Brothers Dr. Theodore J. and Martin Becker