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Mary and Eliza Freeman Center for History & Community

The Mary and Eliza Freeman Houses are the last two houses to survive of “Little Liberia,” a settlement of black freedmen in this area that began in 1831 and reached its height just prior to the Civil War. Like many communities at that time, “Little Liberia” began around the formation of an African Methodist Episcopal church, which stands nearby as Walters Memorial A.M.E. Zion. Mary (1815-1883) and Eliza (1805-1863) Freeman were two African American women of prominence who purchased these properties in 1848 to utilize as rentals while they lived and worked in New York City. The sisters later moved to Bridgeport and owned several other rental properties in the community. During their lifetimes, the Freeman sisters overcame significant obstacles as women and as African Americans in 19th century society. These houses are privately owned and not open to the public.

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