News Flash Home
The original item was published from 3/3/2022 4:22:26 PM to 3/12/2022 12:00:01 AM.

News Flash

News & Town Board Reports (gblist)

Posted on: March 5, 2022

[ARCHIVED] Greenburgh Slice of History

“His Soul Goes Marching On” in Greenburgh Abolitionists in Greenburgh Part I-The Life of Stephen Archer

Text</p><p>Description automatically generated

 

Logo</p><p>Description automatically generated with medium confidence

 

“His Soul Goes Marching On” in Greenburgh Abolitionists in Greenburgh Part I-The Life of Stephen Archer

By: Riley Wentzler & Felicia Barber

 

Introduction:

 

John Brown's body lies a-moldering in the grave
 John Brown's body lies a-moldering in the grave
 John Brown's body lies a-moldering in the grave
 But his soul goes marching on!

 

The stars above in Heaven are looking kindly down
 The stars above in Heaven are looking kindly down
 The stars above in Heaven are looking kindly down
 On the grave of old John Brown!

 

Chorus:

Glory, Glory, Hallelujah
 Glory, Glory, Hallelujah
 Glory, Glory, Hallelujah
 His soul goes marching on

 

He captured Harper's Ferry with his nineteen men so true
 He frightened old Virginia till she trembled through and through
 They hanged him for a traitor, they themselves the traitor crew
 He's gone to be a soldier in the Army of the Lord, /|
 He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored. 

 

Chorus:

Glory, Glory, Hallelujah
 Glory, Glory, Hallelujah
 Glory, Glory, Hallelujah

His soul goes marching on.
 

John Brown died that the slaves might be free, /
 John Brown died that the slaves might be free,
 His soul goes marching on.
 

Chorus:

Glory, Glory, Hallelujah
 Glory, Glory, Hallelujah
 Glory, Glory, Hallelujah
 His soul goes marching on

 

The stars above in Heaven now are looking kindly down, /
 The stars above in Heaven now are looking kindly down,
 The stars above in Heaven are looking kindly down
 On the grave of old John Brown

His soul goes marching on.

 

Chorus:

Glory, Glory, Hallelujah
 Glory, Glory, Hallelujah
 Glory, Glory, Hallelujah
 His soul goes marching on”

(John Brown’s Body by Massachusetts 12th Regiment- Union Army 1861)

 

The above song is a tribute to the late abolitionist John Brown, traitor to America, but hero to the Abolition Movement. He launched a daring raid on the United States’ Arsenal at Harper’s Ferry in October of 1859 in hopes of arming slaves and starting a slave revolt in the state of Virginia. His hope was to bring a quick and decisive end to slavery. Previously we wrote about Vernon Jordan and his contributions to the Civil Rights’ Movement. As revolutionary as the Civil Rights’ Movement of the 1960’s was, we must not forget that it would not have been possible without the Abolition Movement of the 1780s-1865 which came before it. This movement eventually brought an end to the abhorrent yet long enduring practice of chattel slavery in America. Long before there were: Martin Luther King Jr, Rosa Parks, and Malcom X there were: Harriet Tubman, Sojourner Truth, Frederick Douglass, and of course, John Brown. 

 

Previously we examined Greenburgh’s connection to the Civil Rights’ Movement, let us now step further back in time and examine Greenburgh’s connections to the Abolition Movement. We begin this journey in Greenburgh’s Village of Dobbs Ferry, by examining the life of the humble Quaker, Stephen Archer.

 

A person sitting in a chair</p><p>Description automatically generated with low confidence

 

Stephen Archer (1803-1877)

 

The Humble Quaker:

 

Stephen Archer was born on September 6th 1803 in Greenburgh’s Village of Tarrytown. At the time of his birth, his father, John Archer, was 25 and his mother, Elizabeth (Dean) Archer, was 21 (https://ancestors.familysearch.org/en/LQRD-DNR/stephen-archer-1803-1877). Stephen was a Quaker, and like most Quakers, a passionate abolitionist.

 

He was also a good friend of the former slave and prominent abolitionist, Sojourner Truth (https://docsouth.unc.edu/neh/truth84/truth84.html). Sojourner Truth was an African American woman born in 1797 in Ulster County, New York to slave parents, James and Elizabeth Bomefree. Her birth name was Isabella Bomefree (Microsoft Encarta 1993-2003). Her master, John Dumont, beat her regularly (Sellman, in Encarta Africana 1993-2003). In 1826, she ran away to New York City. One year later, New York abolished slavery. While in New York City, she worked as a cook and a maid (Microsoft Encarta 1993-2003). Although she was illiterate, she was deeply religious, attending both the Methodist and African Methodist Episcopal Zion churches (Microsoft Encarta 1993-2003). It was from listening to the various preachers at these churches that she learned to speak well. In 1843, she took the name Sojourner Truth. She then began preaching herself, combining evangelical Christian sermons with powerful advocacy of the abolition of slavery (Microsoft Encarta 1993-2003).

 

Stephen Archer married Emeline Ascough in 1819 (https://ancestors.familysearch.org/en/LQRD-DNR/stephen-archer-1803-1877). In 1836, he purchased the Livingston Mansion in Greenburgh’s Village of Dobbs Ferry from Peter Van Burgh Livingston (Liber #70). Peter Van Burgh Livingston was the son of the original owner of the property, Philip Livingston (Liber #28).

 

Stephen Archer used his home to shelter escaping runaway slaves (https://beelocalbuzz.net/beelocalbuzz/articles/slavery-and-the-underground-railroad). He would take these people through a secret passage leading from the coal cellar to under the garden (https://beelocalbuzz.net/beelocalbuzz/articles/slavery-and-the-underground-railroad).He died on December 16th 1877 at his home in Greenburgh’s Village of Dobbs Ferry, at the age of 74. He is buried in Sleepy Hollow Cemetery (https://ancestors.familysearch.org/en/LQRD-DNR/stephen-archer-1803-1877).

 

Conclusion:

 

In conclusion, as revolutionary as the Civil Rights’ Movement of the 1960’s was, we must not forget that it would not have been possible without the Abolition Movement of the 1780s-1865 which came before it which eventually brought an end to the abhorrent yet long enduring practice of chattel slavery in America. Greenburgh is proud to celebrate its contributions to this great movement, by looking back on the life of the humble Quaker, Stephen Archer.

 

a_slice_of_history.jpg


 

 

Previous Slices of History include:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

About the Authors:

 

We are both Assistant Town Historians at Greenburgh Town Hall and we are engaged to be married and are currently looking for permanent employment.

 

Riley Wentzler:

I was born and raised in a small rural town in central Pennsylvania. In high school, I took every honors course available including four years of Spanish. I received A’s in all of them. I graduated third in my class of 146 students. This brought me to Edinboro University of Pennsylvania. Once there, I continued my trend of academic excellence. I graduated summa cum laude in Political Science with a minor in Spanish and a Master’s in Communication Studies, with a G.P.A of 3.94. It was also there that I met my lovely fiancée, Felicia Barber. My Master’s in Communication has promoted public speaking, teamwork, and customer service. My Political Science degree has developed my research skills using computer-based tools and provided me with experience using the Microsoft Office products. My minor in Spanish has facilitated my bilingual capabilities. During my internship at Greenburgh, I created the petition for the State Roads project using website tools. My diverse education and areas of interest have provided me with a wide range of skills. I look forward to finding a career opportunity in business or government. To suggest a topic for next week’s article, you can contact me at assistanthistorian@greenburghny.comor to help me find employment, you can contact me at rjwentzler413@gmail.com 

 

Felicia Barber:

I was born in New York City and raised in Hartsdale, New York. I graduated from Ardsley High School. I recently earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Graphic Design at Edinboro University of Pennsylvania. It was here that I met my fiancé, Riley Wentzler. As a result of my academic excellence, I won a scholarship every year. I learned and applied many graphic design skills to projects during my summer internships and at school. I am proficient in using Adobe graphic design applications including Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign. For my Identity/branding course at Edinboro, I created logos to appear on the tee-shirts of Physical Education majors. For a veteran’s upcoming event, I used a typeface to focus the reader to the soldier in the poster. For the State Roads Legislative Campaign project, I created the embedded graphic-photo that accompanied the petition I am looking for a job to utilize my skills as a Graphic Designer in an agency, print shop, company or government To suggest a topic for next week’s article, you can contact me at assistanthistorian@greenburghny.comTo learn more about my artwork or to help me find employment you can contact me at feliciadbarber@gmail.com.

 

 

Two Interviews with the authors:

 

https://riverjournalonline.com/around-town/a-love-of-history-and-each-other/13708/

 

https://wcbs880.radio.com/articles/news/stories-main-street-couple-cerebral-palsy-brings-manytalents-town-greenburgh


 

 

References:

 

Academic Affairs Library, UNC-CH University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. (2001, (NOT GIVEN) (NOT GIVEN)). Narrative of Sojourner Truth; a Bondswoman of Olden Time, Electronic Edition. Retrieved from Documenting The American South: https://docsouth.unc.edu/neh/truth84/truth84.html

 

Intellectual Reserve, Inc. v(2021, (NOT GIVEN) (NOT GIVEN)). Stephen Archer. Retrieved from FamilySearch: https://ancestors.familysearch.org/en/LQRD-DNR/stephen-archer-1803-1877

 

[New York]. [Westchester County]. [Deed], [1836]. [Westchester County Courthouse], [Liber # 70]: [White Plains, NY].

 

[New York]. [Westchester County]. [Deed], [1826]. [Westchester County Courthouse], [Liber # 28]: [White Plains, NY].

 

Microsoft Corporation. (1993-2003, (Not Given) (Not Given)). Encarta Encyclopedia. Redmond, Washington, United States of America.

 

Sellman, J in Encarta Africana, Microsoft Corporation. (1993-2003, (Not Given) (Not Given)). Encarta Encyclopedia. Redmond, Washington, United States of America.

 

Toth, H. (2022, February 1). Retrieved from Bee Local The Neighborhood Buzz: https://beelocalbuzz.net/beelocalbuzz/articles/slavery-and-the-underground-railroad

Facebook Twitter Email

Other News in News & Town Board Reports (gblist)

Bed Bath Beyond closing Elmsford store

Posted on: January 30, 2023

AARP TAX PREP - FREE

Posted on: January 27, 2023

Avoid Late Property Tax Penalties

Posted on: January 19, 2023

Home heating sales tax suspended -

Posted on: January 12, 2023