Events: In-Person Event

Ellen and William Craft: A Love Story

  • April 30, 2024
  • The Ware Center, 42 N. Prince Str., Lancaster, PA
  • 5pm Doors Open | 5:30pm Talk
  • FREE | Tickets Required
A graphic with two images. The image on the left is the front cover of the book "Master Slave Husband Wife" by Illyon Woo. The image on the right is of Illyon Woo, a woman with light skin and long dark hair. She rests her arm on the back of a chair and looks off to the left of the photo.

TICKETS ARE NOW AVAILABLE

On Tuesday, April 30, LancasterHistory is thrilled to welcome New York Times bestselling author Dr. Ilyon Woo for a talk and book signing for her latest book, Master Slave Husband Wife: An Epic Journey from Slavery to Freedom, at the Ware Center for the Performing Arts. Described as three epic journeys compressed into one monumental bid for freedom, Master Slave Husband Wife is a historical American love story—one that would challenge the nation’s core precepts of life, liberty, and justice for all—that challenges us even now.

A graphic with two images. The image on the left is the front cover of the book "Master Slave Husband Wife" by Illyon Woo. The image on the right is of Illyon Woo, a woman with light skin and long dark hair. She rests her arm on the back of a chair and looks off to the left of the photo.
The front cover of “Master Slave Husband Wife” (left) and author Ilyon Woo (right). Photo by Michael Wilson.

Named as a best book of 2023 by The New Yorker, Time, NPR, Smithsonian Magazine, and Oprah Daily, Master Slave Husband Wife tells the remarkable true story of Ellen and William Craft, who escaped slavery through daring, determination, and disguise, with Ellen passing as a wealthy, disabled white man and William posing as “his” slave. Posing as master and slave, while sustained by their love as husband and wife, they made their escape together across more than 1,000 miles, riding out in the open on steamboats, carriages, and trains that took them from bondage in Georgia to the free states of the North.

Along the way, they dodged slave traders, military officers, and even friends of their enslavers who might have revealed their true identities. The tale of their adventure soon made them celebrities and generated headlines around the country. Americans could not get enough of this charismatic young couple who traveled another 1,000 miles criss-crossing New England and drawing thunderous applause as they spoke alongside some of the greatest abolitionist luminaries of the day—among them Frederick Douglass and William Wells Brown.

But even then, they were not out of danger. With the passage of the infamous Fugitive Slave Act of 1850, all Americans became accountable for returning refugees like the Crafts to slavery. Then yet another adventure began as slave hunters came up from Georgia, forcing the Crafts to flee once again—this time from the United States–with their lives and thousands more on the line and the stakes never higher.

Dr. Ilyon Woo is the New York Times bestselling author of Master Slave Husband Wife: An Epic Journey from Slavery to Freedom and The Great Divorce: A Nineteenth-Century Mother’s Extraordinary Fight Against Her Husband, the Shakers, and Her Times. Her writing has appeared in The Boston GlobeThe Wall Street Journal, Time, and The New York Times. She has received support for her research from the Whiting Foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the American Antiquarian Society, among other institutions. She holds a BA in the Humanities from Yale College and a Ph.D. in English from Columbia University.

EVENT DETAILS & HOW TO REGISTER

This event will take place in person at the Ware Center, 42 N. Prince Street in Lancaster, on Tuesday, April 30, 2024. Doors open at 5pm, followed by the lecture at 5:30pm in Steinman Hall. Post-lecture (~6:30pm), Ilyon Woo will be available for a book signing of her book, Master Slave Husband Wife. Copies of the book will be available for purchase.

CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS

This event is free and open to the public but requires advance registration and tickets to attend. To attend this program, please register online or by calling (717) 392-4633. Individuals may only purchase a maximum of four (4) tickets per transaction. If you do not receive a confirmation email for registering, please check your junk/spam folders before contacting support@lancasterhistory.org. Advance registration is strongly encouraged. We are not accepting a waitlist.

Please note that this is an in-person event only. LancasterHistory will not be recording or livestreaming this lecture.

This event is made possible through a partnership with Millersville University’s History Department and by generous supporters, Anne G. Gardner and the Musser-Lyons Endowment for Equity and Education at LancasterHistory.

Please Note: In the Winter/Spring 2024 Programs & Exhibitions guidebook, this event is titled “Master Slave Husband Wife: An Epic Journey from Slavery to Freedom.” After the printing of the guidebook, this event title was altered but it is the same event.


Membership Makes History Happen! Your membership enables us to bring dynamic speakers to LancasterHistory and gives you other exciting benefits! Learn more about becoming a member of LancasterHistory or renewing your membership today.

Featured Event Book Signing In-Person Event Lecture

Storytime [May 2, 2024]

Enjoy the sights and sounds of nature this May during Storytime! Each week, we’ll read aloud from a book centered on a historical or environmental topic, and then lead a craft or activity. This May, we’ll explore gardening, growing, and other springtime themes!

Colorful book cover with a leaf border and three children walking.
Credit: Scholastic

On May 2, we’ll read We’re Going on a Nature Hunt by Steve Metzger (illustrated by Miki Sakamoto).

When three friends take off on a lovely spring morning, they have no idea where the day will lead them. Together, they explore the beauty nature has to offer. And together, they have fun everywhere they go off on an adventure, or right here at home! – Scholastic

Storytime is free, and registration is required to ensure we have craft supplies for everyone. Storytime is designed for young readers, ages 2-6, but older and younger siblings or friends are welcome to attend. Register for all Storytime programs or individual programs online or over the phone by calling (717) 392-4633.

Storytime will take place outdoors unless it rains, in which case it will be moved indoors. All attendees should abide by LancasterHistory’s Heath & Safety Protocols for Visitors. We kindly ask that at least one (1) adult 18 years or older attend for every household.

Children's Program Family-Friendly In-Person Event Outdoor

May 2, 2024 LancasterHistory, 230 N President Avenue, Lancaster 10 - 11am FREE | Registration Required

Harriet Lane: Compassionate Philanthropist

By the age of 10, Harriet Lane had lost her mother, father, and two brothers to tuberculosis. Her uncles, Edward and James Buchanan, served as her guardians. During this special subject tour, visitors will learn about Harriet’s life and the unique resilience that shaped her concern for others and helped her rise above personal challenges and sorrows.

Harriet Lane: Compassionate Philanthropist, a special guided tour of Wheatland, will be held on Saturday, May 4. Tours will be available on the hour, beginning at 10am and continuing until the last tour at 3pm. Please Note: These tours are not our regular General Admission tours and will be more focused on a particular topic than a general history of Buchanan and the home.

Tickets are available for purchase online or over the phone by calling (717) 392-4633. When booking online, be sure to first select the date of May 4, followed by the tour time of your choice. Advance reservations are highly recommended as tours may sell out and walk-in tickets may not be available. Members receive complimentary admission, but should reserve their tickets in advance to guarantee the tour time of their choice.

In-Person Event Tour

May 4, 2024 230 North President Avenue, Lancaster, PA Tours from 10am - 3pm FREE/Members | $17/Adults (18+) | $15/Seniors (65+) | $10 (11-College ID)

Spring Seasonal Gathering Tour

Join the Friends of the Tanger Arboretum for their Spring Seasonal Gathering Tour on Saturday, May 4 at 10am. Horticulturist Jeffrey (Jeff) Hazlett will lead attendees on a walking tour through the Arboretum for a glimpse at what’s new, blooming, or to come with the approach of warmer, sunnier months. In particular, attendees will learn about the many flowering trees on the grounds, the pollinator gardens, and the two recognized Pennsylvania Champion Trees that call the Arboretum home!

Jeff Hazlett
Presenter Jeff Hazlett

Jeff Hazlett is the current Vice President of the Board of the Friends of the Tanger Arboretum and past president of the organization. He studied horticulture at Penn State University and is currently the president of Ever Green Tree & Lawn Care in Lancaster, PA. Jeff is a nature lover and an active volunteer for the Friends of the Tanger Arboretum and LancasterHistory.

HOW TO REGISTER
The event, “Spring Seasonal Gathering Tour,” will take place on Saturday, May 4, 2023 at 10am at LancasterHistory. Tickets are $5/Adult (18+) and $3/Child. Friends of the Tanger Arboretum members receive complimentary admission, but should still register for the program. Tickets may be purchased online or by calling (717) 392-4633. Advance tickets recommended as the program has limited capacity. The tour will last approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour. If you would like to attend but have questions or concerns about the accessibility of the walking route, please contact Emily Miller at (717) 392-4633, ext. 133 or emily.miller@lancasterhistory.org for more information.

The Friends of the Tanger Arboretum is a member of the American Horticultural Society Reciprocal Admission Program. AHS Reciprocal Admission Program members may register for tickets in advance and must show a valid membership card upon checking in. AHS Members should contact Emily Miller, emily.miller@lancasterhistory.org, with any questions or to register for tickets in advance.


This event is hosted by the Friends of the Tanger Arboretum. The Friends of the Tanger Arboretum, a subsidiary organization of LancasterHistory, helps foster public interest in, and support for, the maintenance and development of the Tanger Arboretum as a community asset. To learn more about the Arboretum or to become a member, please visit the Arboretum’s webpage.

Family-Friendly In-Person Event Outdoor Tour

May 4, 2024 LancasterHistory, 230 N. President Ave., Lancaster 10am $5/Adults (18+) | $3/Children | FREE for Friends of the Tanger Arboretum Members

County Founding Day Open House

On May 10, 1729, Governor John Penn granted a county charter to local citizens to create what would become Lancaster County. Join us as we celebrate 295 years of Lancaster County with extended museum hours and special tours of our major exhibit, Thieves & Vagabonds, which tells the story of the county’s origins and the complex history of law and justice in our community.

More information to come! Please check back later.

Open House Family-Friendly In-Person Event

May 9, 2024 LancasterHistory, 230 N. President Ave., Lancaster, PA 5-8pm More Details to Come!

Storytime [May 9, 2024]

Enjoy the sights and sounds of nature this May during Storytime! Each week, we’ll read aloud from a book centered on a historical or environmental topic, and then lead a craft or activity. This May, we’ll explore gardening, growing, and other springtime themes!

Book cover with a man in a work apron and a farm field in the background
Credit: MacMillan Publishers

On May 9, we’ll read John Deere, That’s Who! by Tracy Nelson Maurer (illustrated by Tim Zeltner).

Back in the 1830s, who was a young blacksmith from Vermont, about to make his mark on American history? John Deere, that’s who! Who moved to Illinois, where farmers were struggling to plow through the thick, rich soil they called gumbo? Who tinkered and tweaked and tested until he invented a steel plow that sliced into the prairie easy as you please? Long before the first tractor, who changed farming forever? John Deere, that’s who! Beautiful illustrations—including spectacular landscapes—reflect the time period and bring John Deere’s remarkable story to life.MacMillan Publishers

Storytime is free, and registration is required to ensure we have craft supplies for everyone. Storytime is designed for young readers, ages 2-6, but older and younger siblings or friends are welcome to attend. Register for all Storytime programs or individual programs online or over the phone by calling (717) 392-4633.

Storytime will take place outdoors unless it rains, in which case it will be moved indoors. All attendees should abide by LancasterHistory’s Heath & Safety Protocols for Visitors. We kindly ask that at least one (1) adult 18 years or older attend for every household.

Children's Program Family-Friendly In-Person Event Outdoor

May 9, 2024 LancasterHistory, 230 N President Avenue, Lancaster 10 - 11am FREE | Registration Required

Nature Series: Native Plants of Hidden Valley

A graphic with a color photograph of an adult woman with light skin and curly black hair. She holds a vase with plants and a Luna moth.Join the Friends of the Tanger Arboretum on Saturday, May 11 at 10am for “Native Plants of Hidden Valley!” Presenter Lydia Martin, a local ecological design consultant, will explore her favorite native plants and how they aid the natural landscape and provide many benefits to wildlife at Hidden Valley, her 10-acre property in southern Lancaster County. Leave inspired to incorporate more native plants in your own green spaces and support the local plants in your ecological community!

Lydia Martin is an ecological design consultant who teaches private and public landowners how to restore and manage their properties for the benefit of people and wildlife. Lydia is also the Director of Community Engagement for Let’s Go 123, a local non-profit committed to bringing urban youth and families together through outdoor and nature-based activities. For more than 15 years she’s pursued her love of conservation and is passionate about promoting access, education, and advocacy to Lancaster’s diverse community about trails, green space, native plant restoration, and waterways in central Pennsylvania. Lydia manages 10 acres of woodlands, wetlands, ponds, and meadow habitats at “Hidden Valley” with her family in southern Lancaster County.

HOW TO REGISTER
The event, “Native Plants of Hidden Valley,” will take place on Saturday, May 11 at 10am at LancasterHistory. Tickets are $5/Adult (18+) and $3/Child. Friends of the Tanger Arboretum members receive complimentary admission, but should still register for the program. Tickets may be purchased online or by calling (717) 392-4633. Advance tickets recommended as the program has limited capacity.

The Friends of the Tanger Arboretum is a member of the American Horticultural Society Reciprocal Admission Program. AHS Reciprocal Admission Program members may register for tickets in advance and must show a valid membership card upon checking in. AHS Members should contact Emily Miller, emily.miller@lancasterhistory.org, with any questions or to register for tickets in advance.


This event is hosted by the Friends of the Tanger Arboretum. The Friends of the Tanger Arboretum, a subsidiary organization of LancasterHistory, helps foster public interest in, and support for, the maintenance and development of the Tanger Arboretum as a community asset. To learn more about the Arboretum or to become a member, please visit the Arboretum’s webpage.

Family-Friendly In-Person Event Nature Series Program

May 11, 2024 LancasterHistory, 230 N. President Ave, Lancaster 10am $5/Adults | $3/Children (17 & Under) | FREE Friends of Tanger Arboretum Members

Stevens & Smith Center Ceremonial Groundbreaking

A vibrant contemporary photo of historic brick buildings along a road.
The Thaddeus Stevens & Lydia Hamilton Smith Center for History and Democracy on the corner of South Queen and Vine Streets in Lancaster City.

Join LancasterHistory for a ceremonial groundbreaking at the Thaddeus Stevens & Lydia Hamilton Smith Center for History and Democracy on Monday, May 13, 2024! The event will begin at 9am in Commons on Vine in the Lancaster County Convention Center with coffee and pastries, followed by remarks from local dignitaries and figures such as Mayor Danene Sorace, Representative Ismail “Izzy” Smith-Wade-El, Representative Michael Sturla, and LancasterHistory President & CEO Thomas R. Ryan, Ph.D. After remarks, the public is invited to tour the Stevens & Smith Center for first behind-the-scenes looks at the space before construction officially begins.

This event is free and open to the public, but requires registration and space is limited.

Register Online for the Groundbreaking

Registrations may also be made over the phone by calling 717.392.4633.

Parking for the event is available at local garages for a fee, including the Penn Square Garage at 28 S. Duke Street.

This event has also been cross-posted to stevensandsmithcenter.org.

Open House Dedication/Memorial Family-Friendly In-Person Event Off-Site Event Tour Reception

May 13, 2024 Commons on Vine, Lancaster Co. Convention Center 9am - 12pm FREE | Registration Required

Storytime [May 16, 2024]

Enjoy the sights and sounds of nature this May during Storytime! Each week, we’ll read aloud from a book centered on a historical or environmental topic, and then lead a craft or activity. This May, we’ll explore gardening, growing, and other springtime themes!

Illustration of a blue sky and large white clouds with a boy and a dog. The boy is pulling a wagon with bird seed, flowers, and small critters.
Credit: MacMillan Publishers

On May 16, we’ll read And Then It’s Spring by Julie Fogliano (illustrated by Erin E. Stead).

Following a snow-filled winter, a young boy and his dog decide that they’ve had enough of all that brown and resolve to plant a garden. They dig, they plant, they play, they wait . . . and wait . . . until at last, the brown becomes a more hopeful shade of brown, a sign that spring may finally be on its way.MacMillan Publishers

Storytime is free, and registration is required to ensure we have craft supplies for everyone. Storytime is designed for young readers, ages 2-6, but older and younger siblings or friends are welcome to attend. Register for all Storytime programs or individual programs online or over the phone by calling (717) 392-4633.

Storytime will take place outdoors unless it rains, in which case it will be moved indoors. All attendees should abide by LancasterHistory’s Heath & Safety Protocols for Visitors. We kindly ask that at least one (1) adult 18 years or older attend for every household.

Children's Program Family-Friendly In-Person Event Outdoor

May 16, 2024 LancasterHistory, 230 N President Avenue, Lancaster 10 - 11am FREE | Registration Required

James Buchanan, John Brown, & the 1859 Attack on Harper’s Ferry

On Thursday, May 16, join LancasterHistory as we welcome author and historian Dr. John Quist for a discussion of John Brown’s 1859 attack on the U.S. Armory at Harper’s Ferry and why then President Buchanan chose to hand Brown over to Virginia authorities for prosecution.

Headshot photograph of an older man with light skin. He has gray-white hair and a closely-kept beard.
Presenter Dr. John Quist

President James Buchanan’s domestic policy of peace and moderation derailed in October 1859 when radical abolitionist John Brown led 21 men on a raid of the U.S. Armory at Harper’s Ferry, Virginia. Dr. John Quist of Shippensburg University joins us to discuss Buchanan, Brown, and the challenging questions Brown’s actions raised about slavery, violence, and obedience to the law.

John Quist, Ph.D. is a professor of history at Shippensburg University. He received his PhD from the University of Michigan. He is also the author or editor of several books, including Restless Visionaries: The Social Roots of Antebellum Reform in Alabama and Michigan (LSU Press, 1998), (with Michael J. Birkner) James Buchanan and the Coming of the Civil War (University Press of Florida, 2013), and (with Michael J. Birkner and Randall M. Miller) The Worlds of James Buchanan and Thaddeus Stevens.

EVENT DETAILS & HOW TO REGISTER

This event is expected to take place in person at LancasterHistory on Thursday, May 16, 2024. Doors open and a reception begins at 5pm. The lecture will begin at 5:30pm. The lecture will also be streamed to Zoom at 5:30pm for those who wish to join us virtually.

This program is free and open to the public. In-person attendance requires advance registration in order to guarantee a seat. Due to capacity restrictions, tickets may not be available at the door. Virtual attendance requires advance registration in order to receive the Zoom link. Register online by clicking the appropriate link below or by calling (717) 392-4633. Registration will close online on Thursday, May 16 at 5:30pm. The online version of this program will also be recorded and uploaded to LancasterHistory’s YouTube channel after the event.

REGISTER TO ATTEND IN PERSON

REGISTER TO ATTEND ONLINE

By purchasing a ticket to our facility and/or program, you are agreeing to our Admissions & Programs Terms and Conditions.


Membership Makes History Happen! Your membership enables us to bring dynamic speakers to LancasterHistory and gives you other exciting benefits! Learn more about becoming a member of LancasterHistory or renewing your membership today.

In-Person Event Lecture Online/Virtual Event Reception

May 16, 2024 In Person at LancasterHistory & Online via Zoom 5pm Reception | 5:30pm Lecture FREE | Registration Required