Nationally Known Historian to Speak at Louisburg College

David Cecelski

LOUISBURG, N.C.-Through the Tar River Center for History and Culture, Durham-based independent historian Dr. David Cecelski will give a lecture entitled "The Fire of Freedom: Abraham Galloway and the Slaves' Civil War" on Monday, December 2 at Louisburg College. The lecture will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Norris Theatre (please note, this is a change from the previous venue of the Person Place).

The presentation (the second in the Tar River Center for History and Culture's 2013-2014 lecture series on the Civil War and its aftermath in North Carolina and Franklin County) is free and open to the public.

Cecelski, an award-winning author of several books and hundreds of articles pertaining to North Carolina history and culture, has held distinguished visiting professorships at Duke University and at East Carolina University. His most recent book on Galloway, published by the University of North Carolina Press in 2012, won the North Caroliniana Society's North Caroliniana Book Award.

Abraham Galloway, born in 1837 to a slave mother and a white father in Smithville (the county seat of Brunswick County, North Carolina), escaped slavery as a young man. He served as a spy for the Union during the Civil War and recruited former slaves to fight against the Confederacy. Following the Civil War, Galloway became a well-respected leader of freedmen and served in the North Carolina Senate. After his untimely death in 1870, some 6,000 mourners attended Galloway's funeral.

Following Dr. Cecelski's lecture, students in HIS 221 (North Carolina history) at Louisburg College will give a brief presentation on the life of John H. Williamson, a former slave from Louisburg who, like Galloway, became a respected leader of African Americans. Williamson edited two newspapers and served six terms in the North Carolina House of Representatives.

For more information about additional lectures in the series, please visit the Center online at Questions can be directed to York at (919) 497-3252 or

About the Tar River Center for History and Culture

The Tar River Center for History and Culture (TRCHC) works with local governments, private organizations, educational institutions, and individuals to develop the Upper Tar River region's historical and cultural assets, to foster economic development, and to promote knowledge of the past. Learn more at: