In the 1920s, two extraordinary students attended the Colored High and Training School in Baltimore. After graduation, their lives took very different paths, but each shared his particular talents with the world, arguably making it a better place for all of us.
Abolitionist “Captain” John Brown made quite an impression on Frederick Douglass when they first met, but, while bound by the same passion, the two men went on to fight to end slavery by very different means.
On August 24, 1813, during the Battle of Bladensburg, Commodore Joshua Barney, along with 360 sailors and 120 Marines, defended Washington—fighting against the British hand-to-hand with cutlasses and pikes.
In February 1848, Chesapeake Bay boat captain Daniel Drayton was offered a few hundred dollars to go to Washington and pick up 76 people escaping from slavery and take them to freedom in Pennsylvania. Things did not go well.
In 1840, William Gilmor held a tournament, replete with jousting, a quintain, and guests clad in Medieval garb, at his Vineyard estate in Baltimore, which was located near 29th Street and Greenmount in the Waverly neighborhood in Baltimore.
The story of William Othello Wilson, a native of Hagerstown who served as a "Buffalo Soldier" with the Ninth US Calvary fighting the Sioux at Pine Ridge before retiring to a "quiet life" back home in Maryland.
During the Civil War, Hetty Cary, known as "the most beautiful girl in the South," supported the Southern cause with her fellow "Monument Street Girls" in Baltimore, moved to Richmond, and had a tragic, brief marriage to a Confederate general.