“In winter the bare trees are black against the snow and sky in the Old Burying Ground on Pleasant Street. Like frosting, snow decorates the gravestones of our town’s early families. The Bryants, the Bucknams, the Gerrys, the Greens, the Goulds, the Hays—our founders.
But beyond the cluster of 18th and 19th century stones, there are bare spots where no markers disturb the gentle slope of the earth. Here those with no status in colonial Stoneham lie in unmarked graves. Here are buried the town’s slaves.”
So begins the untold story of slavery and abolition in a town of farmers and shoemakers just north of Boston. Once part of Charlestown, the village was incorporated in 1725 as Stoneham, Massachusetts.
In this little book you will learn the names of men, women and children who occupied the lowest rung in colonial society. As slaves, they tilled the soil, split the wood, cooked the food and, in some cases, fought in our wars.