The 176th Anniversary of the Historic 1848 Attempted Escape of Enslaved People to Freedom from the Southwest, Washington DC.

The Pearl was a schooner that carried 77 enslaved people from Washington, DC, on an attempted bid for freedom. The incident and its aftermath contributed to the abolition of slavery in Washington, DC, the nation’s new capital, and the United States. This event is free and open to the public.

“So few people know about this important part of DC’s history," said Rev. Ruth Hamilton, the first convener of The Pearl Initiative composed of Southwest residents. On this 175th anniversary of the event, and the third annual remembrance, members of The Pearl Initiative hope this commemoration will stimulate or renew interest in the story of the Pearl. We also honor the longstanding work of The Pearl Coalition founded by the late Lloyd D. Smith, and carried on by his grandson, David Smith.