Hosted by Pejepscot History Center
A virtual talk revealing extraordinary original research into the life of a Black man in eighteenth-century Topsham, Maine.
June 10, 2021, 12 Noon, via Zoom
With James Tanzer, Independent Researcher
In the spring of 2020, while working on a genealogy project, James Tanzer came across a digital copy of the will of Quash, a formerly enslaved Black man who lived in Topsham during the eighteenth century. Eager to learn more about Quash, but unable to find any mention of him in local history books, James decided to research Quash’s life himself.
Thus began a months-long project in local history and online archives during a global pandemic to uncover the life of Quash, and bring his memory to the fore once again in the communities in which he lived. By searching for evidence in Quash’s surroundings, including town records and social connections, not only was James able to find direct evidence of Quash’s life, but build a vibrant picture of a well-connected, motivated, and successful individual, whose story adds weight to arguments that Black history is there to be found, if only we know where to look.