Book, One Philadelphia
The Price of a Child, by Lorene Cary
A city-wide celebration
February 7- April 12, 2003
winter and spring, all of Philadelphia will be reading and discussing
author Lorene Cary's The Price of a Child, a novel set in
antebellum Philadelphia and inspired by the true story of escaped
slave Jane Johnson and members of the Pennsylvania Anti-Slavery
her novel, Cary drew on the historical collections of PACSCL member
libraries, especially the Historical Society of Pennsylvania and
The Library Company of Philadelphia. In celebrating One Book,
One Philadelphia's use of the drama of history to encourage
reflection about our past and the issues that both unite and divide
us, PACSCL is developing an online guide to related resources and
events in member libraries. This page is a work in progress -- to
receive periodic updates, send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
Online Resources (check back for new entries):
Member Collection Resources
Society of Pennsylvania, 1300 Locust St., Philadelphia
The papers of the Pennsylvania Abolition Society at The Historical
Society of Pennsylvania span the years 1748-1979. They include records
of manumissions and indentures, as well as "Journal C of Station
No. 2 of the Underground Railroad," William Still, agent, 1852-1857.
This journal of the Pennsylvania Anti-Slavery Society is a day-to-day
record of its Vigilance Committee's activity, including accounts
of fugitive slaves passing through Philadelphia. The PAS papers
are available on microfilm. More information about the PAS papers
can be found on the Society's website: www.hsp.org.
College, Friends Historical Library.
"Quakers were heavily involved in the anti-slavery movement,
and we have a number of collections that tie in directly to the
book. We have letters and photographs of William Still, photographs
and pamphlets concerning Passmore Williamson; one of the characters
refers to attending the Institute for Colored Youth (we hold the
records of that institution-- a Quaker founded and supported institution,
later turned over to public control, and now known as Cheyney University);
we have a manscript census of the African-American population of
Philadelphia compiled by Quakers in 1847-- an extremely detailed
look at every household in the city-- occupations, educational levels,
wages, property ownership, former condition of servitude. We are
currently working on a data base of the census and will make it
available to the public on-line." -- Christopher Densmore,
curator. Visit the library online at http://www.swarthmore.edu/Library/friends/
-- the "online resources" link at the left leads to considerable
material about the Underground Railroad and related topics.
Library, Charles Blockson Collection and Urban Archives.
The Charles L. Blockson Afro-American Collection is one of
the nation's leading research facilities for the study of the history
and culture of people of African descent. The core collection was
donated to Temple University in 1983 by Charles L. Blockson, a Pennsylvania
bibliophile and collector of Afro-Americana. As a major research
facility, it provides materials, expository programs and service
for Black Studies research scholars. The collection is used by a
wide spectrum of researchers ranging from high school students to
well-established scholars. The Urban Archives was established
in 1967 to document the social, economic, and physical development
of the Philadelphia area from the mid-19th century to the present.
The Archives functions as a repository for organizational records
and related materials, and as a research facility for those interested
in urban studies. The Archives collections are particularly strong
in areas involving social service organizations, unions, housing
development, community organizations, and contain many records from
organizations involved with African Americans, education, and crime.The
Archives website includes The PACSCL Photograph Directory and the
Directory of African American Collections, guides produced by the
Urban Archives as grant projects. These guides contain descriptions
of photographic and African American collections which are mostly
located at institutions other than the Urban Archives.[website]
1-28. Exhibit. "The Price of A Child: Images and Documents."
Swarthmore College Library, Friends Historical Library.
Original images and documents concerning individuals and organizations
included in Lorene Carey's The Price of a Child, including William
Still, Passmore Williamson, Lucretia Mott, the Institute for Colored
Youth and the Philadelphia Female Anti-Slavery Society; also on
display, the 1847 manuscript census of the African-American population
of Philadelphia. Hours: Monday - Friday, 8:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.,
Saturday 10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. [website]
March 2003. Exhibit. "First Person: Individual Lives in Historical
Perspective." Historical Society of Pennsylvania.
Drawing on diaries, letters, photographs, prints, scrapbooks,
personal documents, and published biographies, this exhibit considers
how the stories of individual lives illuminate and reflect larger
historical themes and realities. Many of the collections displayed
contrast the life stories of great Americans like
George Washington with those of less mythologized people. Included
are the stories of Philadelphia community leaders, women, and
African Americans, as well as the ways in which individuals and
families preserve and present their own histories through genealogy
and memoirs.Admission $1.00. [website]
March 2003. Exhibit. "'Am I Not a Man and a Brother?' Decorative
Arts of the Antislavery Movement." Winterthur Museum, Garden
Discover how the decorative arts were used to convey the horrors
of slavery and promote the cause of abolition. Am I Not
a Man and a Brother? Decorative Arts of the Antislavery
Movement, on display in the Galleries, showcases textiles, ceramics,
prints, and other objects from the early 1800s that depict images
of enslaved Africans. Such items were used in the ongoing campaign
against slavery and the slave trade. This small but highly focused
exhibition presents us with some of the most important images
from the Abolitionist Movement. Included with Estate Passport,
Members free. [website]
15, 7:30 p.m. Lecture. "The Quaker Connection: Documenting
the Underground Railroad at Friends Historical Library."
Swarthmore College Library, Friends Historical Library.
Curator Christopher Densmore explores the holdings of Friends
Historical Library relating to the people and organizations that
form the background to The Price of a Child. [website]
19, 1:30 p.m. "Campus Tour: Swarthmore College's Underground
Railroad Connections." Swarthmore College Library, Friends
A forty-five minute walking tour of the Swarthmore Campus,
with commentary on early founders and faculty of Swarthmore College
who were involved in the Underground Railroad and the Anti-Slavery
20-22. "The Intellectual History of Reconstruction"
is the topic for the three-day, FREE symposium sponsored by the
Southern Intellectual History Circle, Events will take place at
The Historical Society of Pennsylvania, 1300 Locust Street, Philadelphia,
unless otherwise noted. The attached program will detail specific
days, times, and presenters. [program
-- in Adobe Acrobat format]
31. The Author and the Librarian. Lorene Cary reads from The
Price of a Child and The Library Company's Phil Lapsansky
discusses finding the real-life story of Jane Johnson in the library's
rare books and manuscripts. Sponsored by the South of South Neighborhood
Assocation. St. Mary's Episcopal Church, 1831 Bainbridge Street,
2. Mercer Gray's Philadelphia: A Workshop for Educators with Lorene
materials related to the ethnic and racial diversity of antebellum
Philadelphia. 4:30 p.m. The Historical Society of Pennsylvania.
Call 215-732-6200 to register. [website]
8. One Book, One Philadelphia Town Meeting. Free Library of
Philadephia, Central Library, Montgomery Auditorium 7:00 p.m.
. The Penn Humanities Forum celebrates One Book, One Philadelphia
in a special town meeting with Mayor John Street, The Price
of a Child author Lorene Cary, Penn scholars and others.
9. Building The Price of a Child with Lorene Cary.
Lorene Cary's The Price of a Child follows one woman's
escape from slavery into this city's complex social world, c.
1855. Join the author as she discusses the meticulous research
underlying her reconstruction of nineteenth-century Philadelphia,
particularly those facts -- about race relations, economics and
daily life -- that might seem stranger than fiction. Featuring
historical materials from PACSCL member collections. Rosenbach
Museum & Library, 7:30 p.m. Free with admission. [website]
One Philadelphia is a project of the Free Library of Philadelphia
(a PACSCL member), the Office of the Mayor, and many community partners.