(AMHERSTBURG, ON) – On Saturday, staff and volunteers of the Amherstburg Freedom Museum welcomed the community to its Annual Community Meeting and to mark a successful campaign to replace the roof of the Nazrey African Methodist Episcopal Church National Historic Site of Canada.
Local MPP Taras Natyshak and Dan Allen, the Chair of the Ontario Trillium Foundation’s local Grant Review Team, were on hand to congratulate the Museum’s board members on receiving a $45,000 Ontario150 Community Capital Program grant earlier this year.
“I’m thrilled to join board members and patrons of the Amherstburg Freedom Museum in celebration of this important Trillium grant,” said Natyshak. “Our region’s significance in the struggle for freedom and the abolition of slavery is an important part of our history. The families who sought refuge and found a new life in Amherstburg and Essex County contributed to our shared prosperity and cultural identity as Canadians. This Ontario150 grant will support the Amherstburg Freedom Museum in their commitment to sharing that history for all to appreciate, reflect, and preserve.”
Funds from the grant are being used to replace the roof of the historic church, as well as expanding and improving the courtyard. Upgrades to the courtyard area will address maintenance concerns and make it a better experience for walkers, and will also see the museum’s sign and flagpole moved.
In addition, a Free Little Library will be erected in the courtyard to provide Black history material to the community.
“This grant is great news for our Museum and Amherstburg,” said Museum president, Monty Logan. “It has assisted us in replacing the roof on our historic church and enhancing the courtyard so that we can continue to share the history and heritage of our site for many years to come.”
The Amherstburg Freedom Museum is a curated archive that preserves and shares Amherstburg’s stories of the Underground Railroad and the contributions and achievements of the Black community to Canada.