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'Walk to Freedom' banner carried to Lewiston landmark


Mon, Sep 12th 2022 07:00 am

After walking hundreds of miles, Ken Johnston, left, is welcomed by Lewiston’s Tim Henderson, portraying underground stationmaster Josiah Tryon, at the Freedom Crossing Monument on Thursday. Johnston began his “Walk to Freedom” on July 14 in New York City, tracing the footsteps of freedom seekers such as Harriet Tubman, while visiting known Underground Railroad communities along the way.

2022 is the bicentennial of Tubman’s birthday. His final destination is St. Catharines, Ontario.

Lewiston was the final stop for freedom-seekers who had been enslaved in the southern U.S. In the mid-1800s, local volunteers, such as Tryon, assisted them in their journey across the Niagara River to Canada and freedom.

Johnston was also greeted by Susan Geissler, the sculptor commissioned to create the Freedom Crossing Monument, which was dedicated in 2009.

Johnston is the recipient of the 2021 Mural Arts Philadelphia Fellowship for Black Artists, and the 2018 Amherst Irish Association’s Margaret Maher Award. For more information on Johnston and the “Walk to Freedom,” visit ourwalktofreedom.com. (Submitted photo)

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