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Lewis Hayden
Birth: 1811
Fayette County
Kentucky, USA
Death: Apr. 7, 1889
Suffolk County
Massachusetts, USA

Former slave who became a prominent abolitionist. He was the first African-American state government employee in Massachusetts and a member of the Massachusetts General Court. Aided by Underground Railroad activists Delia Webster and Calvin Fairbank, Hayden escaped from slavery in Kentucky in 1844 with his second wife Harriet and her son Joseph. Settling in Boston, the Haydens ran a clothing store and a boarding house, using these enterprises to provide food, shelter and clothing for fugitive slaves. After passage of the Fugitive Slave Act in 1850, Hayden became a leader in resisting its enforcement in Boston. In 1851, he helped rescue a fugitive named Shadrach Minkins from the custody of federal marshals. In 1854, he led an unsuccessful attempt to free Anthony Burns from custody. The attempt turned violent, but it marked the end of federal efforts to recapture escaped slaves in Boston. In 1859, Hayden raised money to finance John Brown's anti-slavery raid on Harper's Ferry. Active in politics, Hayden was appointed in 1858 as a "messenger" in the office of the Massachusetts secretary of state, a post he held until his death. He helped propel his friend John Andrew into the Massachusetts governorship in 1860 and worked closely with Andrew to create the 54th Massachusetts Regiment, the first African-American Civil War unit fielded by a free state. After the war, Hayden was elected to the Massachusetts General Court, but served only one term. An active Mason, he fought racism in the Masonic movement. Two years before he died, he persuaded the General Court to approve a memorial on Boston Common to the five Americans killed by British soldiers in the "Boston Massacre" of 1770, one of whom, Crispus Attucks, was a free black man. Hayden's funeral, attended by over 1,200 mourners, took place at the Charles Street AME Church in Boston. The story of his early life is told by Harriet Beecher Stowe in her book, "The Key to Uncle Tom's Cabin." (bio by: Michael Walter) 
Family links: 
  Harriet Bell Hayden (1813 - 1893)
Woodlawn Cemetery
Middlesex County
Massachusetts, USA
Plot: Lot 2327, Blooming Path
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Originally Created by: Michael Walter
Record added: Oct 26, 2005
Find A Grave Memorial# 12171999
Lewis Hayden
Added by: Curtis Jackson
Lewis Hayden
Added by: Ron Moody
Lewis Hayden
Added by: William Sweeney
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- JasmineFlower
 Added: Feb. 18, 2017
A man of braveryA man of integrity
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 Added: Oct. 24, 2016

- Larry E. Barnes
 Added: Sep. 19, 2016
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