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Weekender Recommendations: The Ex-Slaves’ Fortune: The Story of Cynthia Hesdra

by Visit Nyack

Nyack Library will host a book discussion this evening at 7pm on The Ex-Slaves’ Fortune: The Story of Cynthia Hesdra, by Dr. Lori Martin.

Cynthia D. Hesdra was born a slave in Tappan in 1808 to John and Jane Moore. She became an entrepreneur and abolitionist. During her lifetime, she operated a successful laundry business and owned a number of properties in New York and in New Jersey.

Photo Credit: Nyack Library

At the time of her death in 1879, she was worth about $100,000. She was a millionaire by today’s standards! Her husband, Edward, and many of her relatives, fought over her assets. The extensive court battle was precedent-setting from a legal standpoint and was one of the most celebrated cases of the time.
In 2015, Cynthia Hesdra was honored by the Toni Morrison Society with a Bench by the Road at Memorial Park in Nyack. Join Dr. Lori Martin, who was born and raised in Nyack, as she leads a discussion about the life and times of Cynthia D. Hesdra. Space is limited—every attendee receives a copy of the book. You can register for the event here.

Nyack People & Places, a weekly series that features photos and profiles of citizens and scenes near Nyack, NY, is sponsored by Sun River Health.

has customized Hudson Link bus schedules including departure and arrival times for Metro North trains between Tarrytown and Grand Central on routes H07 / H07X. is a web app to ease your cross river commute from Nyack News And Views.

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