The Rise and Fall of the Florence Settlement: People. Land, and Freedom

In this presentation, Jessica Harney tells the story of the Florence Settlement and the quest to uncover its history. The Florence Farming and Lumber Association was the governance and business organization used to promote, recruit, facilitate, and develop the Florence Farming Settlement in Florence, NY from around 1846-1860.  The primary promoter was the notable black abolitionist Stephen Myers of Albany, NY but through research of his correspondence and newspapers, a list of supporters emerged to tell a more complete narrative of those with whom he was working. The relationship between people, land, and freedom converges in this special place breeding opportunities for self-sufficiency and democratic sustainability for Black Americans. The origin of this settlement is examined and considered in the ways that the political, economic, and social conditions in America impacted the decline of the venture.

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