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Middlesex County Black History Month Celebration Features Harlem Hellfighters

The Harlem Hellfighters in 1917 Credits: Good Reads

Middlesex County Prosecutor Andrew C. Carey is pleased to announce that the 2018 Middlesex County Black History Month Celebration will be held on Friday, February 16, 2018, at 12:30 p.m. in the Jury Room of the Middlesex County Courthouse, located at 56 Bayard Street, New Brunswick. This event is free and open to the public.

The featured keynote speaker will be Dr. Jeffrey Sammons, a renowned Professor of History at New York University.  Dr. Sammons will discuss the unique history of the famed World War I all-black regiment, the 369th, also known as the Harlem Hell Fighters. 

Although initially relegated to non-combat duty by the U.S. Command, the 369th was sent to France and spent more time in front-line trenches than any other American infantry unit.  Fighting alongside French, Moroccan and Senegalese soldiers at the campaigns of Champagne-Marne and Meuse-Argonne, the courageous men of the 369th distinguished themselves in some of the fiercest battles of the Great War.

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“Middlesex County takes pride in honoring and sharing the history of our multicultural populations while promoting learning as well as diversity,” said Freeholder Director Ronald G. Rios. “We want to educate our residents on the significant role African-Americans played in World War I and other historic events.”

The celebration is sponsored by the Middlesex County Board of Chosen Freeholders in partnership with the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, the Superior Court of NJ - Middlesex Vicinage, and the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office.

Prosecutor Carey stated, “We are grateful for the support of the  County Freeholders in sponsoring this event, and we are honored to have Dr. Sammons speak to us about such a dedicated group of heroes who played such an important role in American History.”

For more information on this program, please contact Reggie Johnson, Community Affairs Liaison at the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office and President of the Metuchen-Edison Area Branch of the NAACP, at 732-745-8430.


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