RED BANK, NJ: The Navesink Maritime Heritage Association in conjunction with the New Jersey Council for the Humanities, has scheduled a public presentation of “Why Wench Betty’s Story Matters: The Murder of a NJ Slave in 1784.”

Enslaved woman Wench Betty was murdered in 1784 and the subsequent court proceedings for her murder were held that year. 

The presentation will reveal powerful Revolutionary War ideas of freedom and liberty at a time when slavery still existed in New Jersey.

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The program will be narrated by Sue Kozel using court documents, coroner’s reports, and slaveowners’ records to enhance her presentation.

Kozel teaches at Kean University and has been designated as a Public Scholar by the New Jersey Council for the Humanities.  She has co-edited a book on Quakers and abolition, and published numerous works on Black freedom, abolitionism, and American and New Jersey History.

“Researching the life and death of "Wench Betty" changed my life because she was killed as a piece of property in New Jersey.  She said "no" to her owner in front of white guests, and Betty's owner became enraged.  He began whipping her and then chasing her out of his brother's house back to his home.  Arthur Barcalow killed her with a broomstick handle with one stroke while she was sitting in the kitchen.  Slavery was brutal in the North and South,” said Kozel.

When: Wednesday, March 17

Time: 7:30pm via a ZOOM Meeting

Registration: to register, click HERE.   

After registration, you will receive an email with the Zoom link a few hours before the presentation start time.

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