In early June, I attended a historic marker dedication to honor Plymouth Freeman, a slave who earned his freedom by serving in the Revolutionary War. The marker was created in response to an article about Freeman I wrote for my book with Erica Barnes, “‘The Bear Tree’ and Other Stories from Cazenovia’a History,” published by Syracuse University Press. The article was also published by the fantastic blog New York Almanack.
Plymouth Freeman first came to my attention as having been labeled in reminiscences and old newspaper reports as being the cook for General George Washington during the Revolutionary War. Further research showed that he also claimed to be the son of an African king who was kidnapped and brought to America as a slave. While the stories of who Freeman was did not turn out to be exactly accurate, he was still a fascinating man who did serve in the Continental Army for six years, and was definitely worthy of an article and a chapter in our book.
Thank you William G. Pomeroy Foundation for erecting this wonderful historic roadside marker in the town of Nelson!