American Society of Freedmen Descendants

During the Cato Freedom Conference and Think Tank of April 30-May 2, 2010, participants formed the American Freedmen Descendants Commission. Charged with exploring means of racial understanding through heritage appreciation, the Commission critiqued a proposal for the establishment of the American Society of Freedmen’s Descendants, a group dedicated to respecting the societal contributions of enslaved Americans.

During the conference in 2010, The Cato Freedom Award was established to honor individuals who have distinguished themselves in research, preservation, family research, or Freedmen history. The award will be presented periodically as deemed appropriate.

The USCTI & American Society of Freedmen Descendants Mini-Conference took place November 4-5, 2011 at Hartwick College. The Northeast Regional Coordinator of the National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom Sheri Jackson took part in opening-day events.

American Society of Freedmen Descendants

Photo: Darlene Colón*, Sylvia Cooke Martin*, Madeline O. Scott*, Ruth Hodge*, Sheri Jackson of the National Park Service, National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom, and Harry Bradshaw Matthews*.
*American Society of Freedmen Descendants Senior Fellow.

The Mini-Conference was part of a Hartwick's Faces of the Civil War, 2011-12 Civil War Symposium. The symposim takes place September through April with exhibits; presentations; trips; grave-site salutes to Civil War soldiers; and musical performances.