Video: Harriet Tubman’s former church in St. Catharines holds open house this weekend
Published February 1, 2023 at 4:10 pm
When the Salem Chapel British Methodist Episcopal (BME) Church in St. Catharines opens its doors to the public this weekend, it’s hard not to think of their most famous parishioner – freedom fighter Harriet Tubman.
While Tubman was only a St. Catharines resident from 1851 to 1858, she remains perhaps the most famous and iconic person to ever call the Garden City home.
As Black History Month continues, the church, located at 92 Geneva St., is hosting an open house Feb. 4 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The free open house will include tours and talks at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.
The Salem Chapel BME Church, originally founded in 1820 by African-American freedom seekers, is a valued historical site due to its design, and its important associations with abolitionist activity.
Oddly, despite her historical significance, no one knows Tubman’s true birthday. However, she died on March 10, 1913 so March 10 has become the day used to celebrate her birth, as well.
Tubman escaped slavery in Maryland to became a “conductor” on the Underground Railroad, leading enslaved people to freedom in the northern United States and Canada before the Civil War, all while carrying a bounty on her head.
But she was also a nurse, a Union spy and a women’s suffrage supporter. Tubman is one of the most recognized icons in American history and her legacy has inspired countless people from every race and background.
Many scholars agree that the Salem Chapel British Methodist Episcopal Church, which began as an African Methodist Episcopal Church, is the oldest Black church in Ontario.
Here’s a quick look at the most famous person to ever walk through the doors at Salem Chapel BME Church.insauga's Editorial Standards and Policies advertising