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Online Program

Online Lecture: Library Week — Free Boy, The Puget Sound “Underground Railroad”

Program No. 24635RJ
Join us on Tuesday, April 25, 2023, at 2 p.m. (ET)/ 11 a.m. (PT) for a one-hour lecture and Q&A about a slave boy who traveled Puget Sound's maritime “underground railroad” in 1860.
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At a Glance

This National Library Week, we invite you to join Dr. Lorraine McConaghy — author of "Free Boy: A True Story of Slave and Master," as she recounts the true story of Charles Mitchell who was born into slavery in Maryland and brought to Washington Territory by his owner in 1855. Five years later, when Mitchell was 12 years old, he was approached in the territorial capital, Olympia, by African-Canadian conspirators from Victoria. They encouraged him to sneak out of his master’s house at dawn on September 24, 1860, and run down to the landing, where the steamer Eliza Anderson was docked. There, the Black steward would hide the boy in the pantry, so that Mitchell could flee to freedom. In this lecture, we will explore the flight of this enslaved boy, one of only two slaves we know of in Washington Territory, and the only one to ride the maritime “underground railroad.”

General Notes

Your online lecture will take place live over the course of 1-2 hours. All times are listed in the EASTERN time zone. If you live in a different time zone, please adjust your schedule accordingly. This live online experience uses Zoom Webinar, an easy-to-use web video service that includes closed captioning. All you need is an Internet connection and your computer. You will receive a confirmation email when you enroll, and a reminder email one week and one day before, as well as the morning of the event with a link and instructions on how to tune in. You will not be pictured on screen during the lecture, but you will have the opportunity to ask the instructor live questions using the Q&A box. Unless otherwise noted, all those who enroll in this program receive access to the live event as well as a recording of the lecture that you can watch any time within the two weeks following the live event.

Important registration tip:
If you want to attend the live lecture, please do not wait until the last minute to enroll.
If you enroll after a lecture is complete, we’ll send you a recording of the event.