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Henry Highland Garnet, Kent County Hero

February 13 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

4 pm, February 13th, via ZOOM and Live-Streamed via Facebook

One of America’s most celebrated crusaders for racial justice was born enslaved in Kent County in 1815.  Henry Highland Garnet escaped from New Market (now Chesterville) with his family to New York City in 1824, obtained an excellent education, became a Presbyterian minister, and achieved fame as an abolitionist.  Like his fellow escapee from slavery on the Eastern Shore, Frederick Douglass, Garnet traveled throughout the North and Europe to advocate the emancipation of all slaves.  Unlike Douglass, Garnet advocated the use of physical force as necessary to abolish slavery.  During the Civil War, he campaigned for African Americans to join the Union Army.  After the war, Garnet remained active in the struggle for racial justice.  In 1870, he returned to Kent County to speak at a large rally celebrating passage of the 15th Amendment, which proclaimed the right of all African American males to vote.  Garnet spent the last few months of his life serving as the American Ambassador to Liberia, where he was buried in 1882.

Since Henry Highland Garnet is much less well-known today than during his life, George Shivers wrote two books for children (one a coloring book) about the man he calls “a Kent County hero.”  Sumner Hall is proud to publish these books, which may be ordered through our website.  To mark the publication, Shivers, a retired Washington College professor, will join in a conversation about Garnet with Sumner Hall’s Gordon Wallace.  Join the Zoom Meeting or live-stream this event via Facebook.

Join Zoom Meeting


Livestreaming via Facebook




February 13
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm


Sumner Hall
206 S. Queen St.
Chestertown, MD 21620 United States