UWindsor Unveils Statue Honouring Abolitionist Mary Ann Shadd

Thursday May 12th, 2022

Posted at 5:39pm

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Amherstburg Freedom Museum Photo

The University of Windsor unveiled the bronze statue of trailblazing abolitionist and newspaper publisher Mary Ann Shadd (Cary) today in downtown Windsor.

The statue, conceived and sculpted by Windsor artist Donna Mayne, will be a focal point of UWindsor’s downtown campus. It stands in the greenspace at the corner of Chatham and Ferry streets, on the grounds of Windsor Hall, a former home of the Windsor Star.

Born in Wilmington, Delaware and arriving in Upper Canada in 1851, Shadd Cary was a teacher and prominent activist in Underground Railroad communities. On March 24, 1853, she published the first edition of The Provincial Freeman, a newspaper that advocated equality, integration and self-reliance for Black people in Canada and the United States. Shadd Cary was the first woman in Canada and the first Black woman in all of North America to establish a newspaper.

“Mary Ann Shadd embodied the reality of exceptionalism,” said UWindsor Vice President of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, Clinton Beckford. “A uniquely gifted and dedicated character who in her lifetime was an anti-slavery activist, journalist, publisher, teacher, and lawyer. Her establishment of a newspaper was only one of a string of watershed moments and accomplishments. I join our community today in recognizing and celebrating her pioneering life and its indelible impact on Black lives today.”

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