The Monday, October 16 members’ meeting is also the Varnum Continental’s Annual Meeting, and it’s only fitting that we look back at one of the significant accomplishments of the man whose name our organization bears: Rhode Island General James Mitchell Varnum. In the winter of 1777, facing a shortage of troops, General Varnum made the bold move of proposing that a regiment of slaves from the state be created, and that those men be allowed to earn their freedom after three years of service.
The General’s proposal was approved by General George Washington and adopted by the state’s General Assembly. Thus began of one of the most provocative and unique experiments in our military history, one that continues to provoke debate and controversy to this day.
Historian Robert A. Geake’s “From Slaves to Soldier” explores of the struggle to bring the regiment to fruition, their role in the American Revolution, and the legacy they created for future soldiers of color that serve in the Armed Forces today. He’ll share that story with us at our October meeting.
As always, your guests are welcome.
Reservations must be received by 5:00 pm Friday, October 13. Call Scott Seaback at 401/413-6277 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
TIME: 5:30 pm (social hour); 6:30 pm (dinner followed by program)
MENU: Prime rib, baked potato and sweet potato bar, grilled veggies, salad, rolls & butter, dessert and coffee
LOCATION: Varnum Memorial Armory Museum, 6 Main St, East Greenwich, RI, 02818.
FEE: $20/person including dinner