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John W Jones, Runaway Slave Memorialized
May 30, 2022 @ 11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Date: Memorial Day, Monday May 30th at 11 AM
Event: John W Jones Memorial Day Celebration
Location: His gravesite in Woodlawn Cemetery, Elmira, New York, May 30th, 11AM (Signs will lead you to his location)
Featuring: The Dorothy Cotton Gospel Singers under the direction of Prof. Baruch Whitehead of Ithaca College will celebrate the life of runaway slave John W Jones at his grave in Woodlawn Cemetery in Elmira, NY on Monday May 30th at 11 AM.
John W Jones fled his enslavement in Leesburg, Virginia in 1841, evaded capture and found refuge in Elmira where he was accepted by the community and protected from bounty hunters. Mr. Jones worked with the father-in-law of Mark Twain, Jeremy Langdon, an abolitionist. Together, they led over 800 former slaves to freedom.
In 1864, the Union created the Elmira Prisoner of War camp along the Chemung River in Elmira. A dreadful place called Hellmira, the Union’s most Infamous Civil War Prison Camp, of Confederate prisoners. John W Jones was given the job of internment of Confederate Prisoners of War. John W Jones buried 2,978 Confederate soldiers who died at Hellmira between the summer of 1864 and spring of 1865
A small museum in honor of John W Jones is located just a short walk down the hill from the graves of John W Jones and his friend, Mark Twain buried nearby at Woodlawn Cemetery.
This event is being sponsored by local Veterans for Peace, Peace Action of Broome County, Pax Christi Upstate New York Ben Salmon Chapter, Ithaca Catholic Workers