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Book Talk - A Colored Man in Exeter

  • Exeter Historical Society 47 Front Street Exeter, NH, 03833 United States (map)

In the summer of 1957, the Ward family moved from Brooklyn, New York, to Lee, New Hampshire, to escape gang violence. It was an era when racial tensions were high and they were the first “colored family” in the area. Needless to say, over the years they encountered many interesting experiences and created a storied life. They also became respected members of the community, led by parents, Harold and Virginia Ward, a couple with strong convictions and compassion.

Harold, Michael Cameron Ward’s 94-year-old father, was hospitalized in the beginning of May 2015, with only weeks to live. On the 20th he made a request of his son: “Michael, I want you to write the stories of our existence. I want my great-grandchildren to know where they came from.” Then, as Michael sat beside his father’s bed on the fourth floor at Exeter Hospital, his father recounted stories of his life that had never been told before. If not captured, they would be lost forever. On June 9, 2015, Harold died, and Michael has been fulfilling his father’s request ever since.

On Tuesday, January 23rd, Michael Ward will discuss the book at the Exeter Historical Society. This event is co-sponsored by Water Street Bookstore and books will be available for purchase and signing.