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The Adam Francis Plummer Family. (L-R Standing: Robert, Nellie, Maggie, and Saunders Sitting: Sarah Miranda, Adam, Henry Vinton, and N. P. Brown). Photograph courtesy Paul Johnson Family

The Adam Francis Plummer Family. (L-R Standing: Robert, Nellie, Maggie, and Saunders Sitting: Sarah Miranda, Adam, Henry Vinton, and N. P. Brown). Photograph courtesy Paul Johnson Family

Media Advisory

Exhibition Examines Legacy of Civil War African American Family

WHAT: Media open house for the newly opened exhibition (Feb. 23), "Hand of Freedom: The Life and Legacy of the Plummer Family." The open house will feature a brief presentation, gallery tour and Q&A.

WHEN: Tuesday, Feb. 24
10:30 a.m.—noon

WHERE: Smithsonian's Anacostia Community Museum
1901 Fort Place S.E.

WHO: Portia James, museum supervisory curator
Jerome Fowler, Plummer descendant and pastor of St. Paul's Baptist Church in Capitol Heights, Md.

A diary begun in 1841 by then-enslaved Plummer patriarch, Adam Francis, and later maintained by his daughter Nellie Arnold, tells of the struggle to keep the family together pre-, during and post-Civil War. Curator James will highlight key milestones experienced and strategies employed by the family as noted in the diary and illustrated by several artifacts on display from the family's mutual aid association. Among the films featured is one about the diary's discovery.

The Plummer exhibition complements "How the Civil War Changed Washington," also available for viewing in the museum's main gallery during the open house. That exhibition focuses on the war's impact on the evolution of the nation's capital—changes in social mores, built environment, population size and ethnicity, neighborhoods and federal—workforce gender—and the fascinating stories of some of the individuals who came and contributed to the city's growth.


Media RSVP:
Marcia Baird Burris (202) 633-4876; (202) 320-1735 (cell)
bairdburrism@si.edu