While the story of Billy Winters is
known by many, Rhonda Forristall—Curator of the Deep River Historical Society—has
turned up a few surprises through her research.
In her second book Forristall, she tells this incredible story. Join
WHS for this fascinating author talk on Friday, June 14th, from 6:30
to 7:30 pm. This is presented in
conjunction with the exhibit Remembered on view through June 30th.
Born enslaved, Billy Winters escaped
through the Underground Railroad and sought a safe place to live. He found
sanctuary in Deep River and for a time in New Bedford, Massachusetts. Frederick
Douglass and Winters were two of the thousands who sheltered in New Bedford
after self-emancipation between 1840-1863.
Billy told the story of his eventful
life to a reporter for the Deep River New Era shortly before he died in
November of 1900. Using this first-hand account, Forristall was able to trace
his steps and add some details to Billy’s story. Due to the secrecy needed to
protect the operators of the Underground Railroad, and those they were trying
to save, there are very few first-hand accounts in existence.
There is no charge for this event however reservations are recommended, register at www.westporthistory.org or call (203) 222-1424 x5. Light refreshments will be served.