Journal Inquirer Staff on June 18, 2021
SUFFIELD — A local group is planning to hold the town’s first Juneteenth celebration Saturday on the town green. Juneteenth is a celebration of the day in 1865 when enslaved people in Texas learned that they were freed by the emancipation proclamation. The local celebration is organized by Anti-Bias, Anti-Racist Suffield, or ABAR. It will be held from 10 a.m. to noon on the town green. Continue reading.
By Matthew P. Knox in the Journal Inquirer on June 15, 2021
SUFFIELD — Residents who walk by the corner of North Main Street and Bridge Street may soon stumble upon a new addition.
A witness stone, a plaque 4 inches in length and width, is going to be embedded in the stone wall along the sidewalk to honor the life of Tamer, an enslaved woman who worked in a home at the location in the late 1700s. Continue reading.
By Bill Sullivan in the Suffield Observer on June 1, 2021
The Suffield Historical Society’s (SHS) online class will ceremoniously install a Witness Stone memorial for Tamer (1770-1829) on June 19 at 10:00 a.m. In collaboration with its community partner, ABAR Suffield, the SHS class will gather speakers and musicians on the town’s gazebo on the north green and be a component of Suffield’s first Juneteenth program. Featured guests include descendants of Venture Smith, who was Tamer’s father-in-law. The SHS Facebook page will provide updated details about the installation ceremony. Continue reading.
By Tess Terribile and Nancy Nalpathanchil of Where We Live
How should we remember painful events in our history? There are more than 70 Witness Stones installed throughout our state. The markers commemorate the lives of the enslaved people that lived in Connecticut.
Witness Stones Project Executive Director Dennis Culliton joins Bill Sullivan of the Suffield Historical Society Trustee and Suffield Academy, and Susi Ryan, a fiber artist and descendent of Venture Smith, for this discussion.
By Bill Sullivan in the Suffield Observer on March 30, 2021
The Suffield Historical Society’s April 13 meeting will be devoted to updating our community on intriguing developments regarding the research and installation of two Witness Stones Memorials. The meeting is open to the public, and newcomers are most welcomed. Please attend the 7 p.m. program by accessing the Zoom link below.
The first project began early last fall when the Society hosted an online class for adults interested in learning about Tamer (aka Tamar). She was enslaved by Comfort Smith and Luther Loomis from the 1770s until 1798, when Solomon Smith, son of Venture Smith, purchased her freedom for marriage. The class was originally planned for three separate nights, and then many original discoveries extended this online class throughout the winter months and now into the spring. Continue reading.
By Bill Sullivan,
The Suffield Historical Society hosted Dennis Culliton, chair and co-founder of the Witness Stones Project, during three online classes during October. Using a document-based approach to understanding slavery in colonial New England, Culliton helped the class build a narrative about an enslaved woman named Tamar by examining a bill of sale document, a marriage record, and other historical records. Continue reading.