Ashley Bryan

Ashley Bryan

Portland’s historic Abyssinian Meeting House executive board is honoring  Ashley Bryan as their first inductee to the Abyssinian Hall of Fame. Representatives of the board will be at the October 4 Community Storytelling Event at 1:00 pm to induct Mr. Bryan.

Established in 1828, the Abyssinian Meeting House on 73 Newbury Street in Portland, Maine, the third-oldest  African-American Meeting House in the country.

Built by free African-Americans just eight years after Maine entered the Union as a “free state,” the three-story, Federal-style building was once an important cornerstone for Portland’s African-Americans.

150 years ago, ships anchored and runaway slaves hurriedly disembarked on the Maine State Pier.They covertly walked up India Street onto Newbury Street to the Abyssinian Meeting House in search of help. William Lloyd Garrison and, locals think, Frederick Douglass gave impassioned speeches while members of the congregation helped those on the Underground Railroad find their way to Canada — and freedom.

For more information please visit http://abyme.org or Abyssinian Meetinghouse Facebook page.

For more information on the event please see stpaulsmaine.org