1700s
1800s
1900s
2000s

1732: John Fearing of Hingham sells four-year old boy named Prince to Hawkes Fearing

John Fearing of Hingham sells four-year old boy named Prince to Hawkes Fearing, and in 1735, Hawkes Fearing sells Prince, now seven years old, to Benjamin Jones. Eighteenth century records record the sale of adults and children by and to Hingham families.

1732: John Fearing of Hingham sells four-year old boy named Prince to Hawkes Fearing2021-02-25T15:43:53-05:00

1750: Hingham’s first shipyard opens

Captain Francis Barker opened Hingham’s first shipyard at Hingham Harbor, building schooners for coastal trade. Hingham’s trade in lumber and its mackerel fleet remained active in the triangular trade supporting slavery in the West Indies into the first half of the 19th century, after slavery was abolished in Massachusetts. 

1750: Hingham’s first shipyard opens2021-02-25T12:55:59-05:00

1768: Property of Pompey Barnes, a free Black man, listed in tax assessment records

Pompey Barnes, a free Black man, is reported to own a house, 2 cows, 6 sheep, 8 acres of pasture, 1 acre of tillage, 3 acres of mowing land, and 2 tons of fresh hay. He and his wife and sons were among the several free Black families in 18th century Hingham.

1768: Property of Pompey Barnes, a free Black man, listed in tax assessment records2021-02-25T15:43:30-05:00

1770s: Free and enslaved Black men fight in militia units raised in Hingham

During the Revolutionary War, free and enslaved Black men fought in militia units raised in Hingham. Among the Black men who fought in Hingham militia units were Winsor Barker, Caesar Blake, Squire Cushing, Joseph Dunbar, Joseph Falmouth, Asher Freeman, Jack Freeman, Jubal Freeman, and Caesar Scott. Cromwell Barnes a free Black man from Hingham, enlisted in a Boston militia unit in 1779.

1770s: Free and enslaved Black men fight in militia units raised in Hingham2021-02-25T15:47:36-05:00

1783: Slavery abolished in Massachusetts

Slavery was abolished by judicial decision in Massachusetts when the Supreme Judicial Court ruled, in a freedom suit brought by Quock Walker, that slavery was inconsistent with the newly adopted Massachusetts state constitution. Two years earlier, Elizabeth Freeman, known as Mumbet, had won her freedom, on the same grounds, from a western Massachusetts jury.

1783: Slavery abolished in Massachusetts2021-02-26T08:06:09-05:00

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