Clay study of Mary Ann Shadd
Concept drawing of Mary Ann Shadd
A century before Rosa Parks or Viola Desmond, there was Mary Ann Shadd.
An American teacher and abolitionist, Shadd moved to Windsor in the mid-1800s and promoted racial integration in a school she opened for children of families escaping slavery in the U.S.
With the subsequent launch of her weekly newspaper, The Provincial Freeman, Shadd became the first woman publisher and editor in Canada.
The paper had as its motto, "Self-reliance is the true road to independence." Read internationally, the publication encouraged emigration to Canada and guided the settlement of refugees traveling the Underground Railroad.
Later, Shadd fought for women's suffrage and was one of the first women of African descent to earn a U.S. law degree.
In 1994, she was declared a Person of National Historic Significance in Canada.
Donna has recently been commissioned to create a lasting tribute to Mary Ann Shadd with a life-size bronze by the University of Windsor.
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