The Lawnside Historical Society’s 2022 Underground Railroad Youth Day Camp was a first-of-its-kind experience for both the dozen-plus children who attended and the state of New Jersey.
Starting at the Peter Mott House, students toured sites and heard lectures on the often untold history of the Underground Railroad.
“Our school has glossed over the Underground Railroad,” camper Katherine Gries, 11, told the Philadelphia Inquirer. “It’s important to remember the history of people who have been forgotten.”
Sites included the Mount Peace Cemetery, the final resting place of some 125 Civil War veterans as formerly enslaved people and others who were not allowed to be buried in white cemeteries; Mount Pisgah A.M.E. Church, which was established in 1792; and a former slave auction block site in Camden.
The historical society hopes to expand on the success of the inaugural camp in future years. The camp was featured in the Philadelphia Inquirer as well as NJ Spotlight News, airing on local PBS stations, and was supported in part by an NJCH grant.
To learn more about the camp, the Lawnside Historical Society, and the Peter Mott House, visit https://www.petermotthouse.org/.