Mary Ann Shadd Cary
(1823 – 1893)
Mary Ann Shadd Cary was a courageous abolitionist and the first Black woman in North America to publish a newspaper. She was born to free Blacks and grew up in Delaware, where her family home was a station on the Underground Railroad. Shadd moved to Canada in 1851 and opened a racially integrated school in Windsor, Ontario. In 1853, she began publishing The Provincial Freeman, which gave a voice to Black Canadians and called for an end to slavery. Shadd returned to the United States during the Civil War and worked as a recruitment agent for the Union Army. She continued her activism there and became known as an outspoken advocate for women's suffrage and one of the first Black women in the United States to study and practice law.
“Our young women want a more vigorous, practical and useful Education…to get her own living, to make out her own course in life, to [countenance] any position she chooses to occupy.”