The cemetery located next to the First Church contains the graves of Venture Smith (1728-1805) and several members of his family. Smith was captured as a child in Africa and brought to Connecticut, where he was sold as a slave. He dictated a pamphlet about his experiences that can be read in the book Five Black Lives. Despite being a slave, Smith was able to work at other jobs, enabling him to buy his freedom, and later, the freedom of his wife and children. One of his sons served in the American Revolution. His wife is buried next to him, and nearby is the grave of another son, Solomon, who served in the War of 1812. Venture’s granddaughter, who died in 1902, is buried here as well. These stones are located near the wall that is next to the church, about halfway back from Route 151.
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