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As the human race, we are like the black and white keys of a piano--independent but blending together we can make beautiful music. --T. Morris ChesterI don't ask that you love white people less, but that you love black people more. --T. Morris Chester

RisingFree

African American History
in South Central
Pennsylvania:
the 19th Century

Lincoln Cemetery
T. Morris Chester Tombstone
Ceremony, September 21, 2002 page 2

 

On Saturday, September 21, 2002, descendants of Thomas Morris Chester, journalist, educator, diplomat, lawyer, scholar, gathered at his grave in Lincoln Cemetery, Penbrook, to unveil a newly refurbished gravestone with corrected year of birth.  The ceremony was a part of the United States Colored Troops Institute Regional Conference, held at Harrisburg that weekend, at the National Civil War Museum.
Websites: 
US Colored Troops Institute | National Civil War Museum

Ms. Latonya Randall, great, great,  grandniece of Thomas Morris Chester, addresses the crowd. Click for a larger image.«  Left:  Ms. Latonya Randall, great, great,  grandniece of Thomas Morris Chester, addresses the crowd.  Prior to her speech, the Rev. Samuel O. Richardson, (at left, back to camera) great grandson of Chester and pastor of Slades Chapel AME Zion Church, Morgantown, North Carolina, offered a prayer.

Guests then sang Lift Every Voice and Sing.

Click photograph
for a larger image. 

Members of the American Legion Honor Guard present the colors.  Click for a larger image.» At right, members of the American Legion Honor Guard present the colors as descendants of Chester prepare to unveil the new tombstone.  At left is Elizabeth Hardy Autridge, great grandniece of T. Morris Chester, who presided over the ceremony. 

Click for a larger image.

 

The new tombstone was unveiled by Mr. Robert Richardson, Sr., grandson of Chester. Click for a larger image.The newly refurbished tombstone is unveiled.«  Far Left:  The new tombstone was unveiled by Mr. Robert Richardson, Sr., grandson of Chester.  Here, Mr. Richardson reads a short speech to the crowd.

«  Left:  The newly refurbished tombstone is unveiled, to applause and cheers, with the help of Mr. James Richardson.

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»At right, Mr. G. Y. Gbamakollie, great grandnephew of Chester, prepares to present Mrs. Ella Mae Simmons, Lincoln Cemetery Chairperson, with a certificate of thanks from the descendants of Thomas Morris Chester.

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«  Left:  Ms. Simmons accepts the thanks of the Chester family descendants on behalf of Wesley Union AME Zion Church and presents Mr. Gbamakollie with a memorial booklet containing a history of Lincoln Cemetery.  The ceremony came to a close with the guests and family singing the Liberian National Anthem, All Hail Liberia Hail, followed by a closing prayer offered by Wesley Union pastor Reverend Beatrice Carter on behalf of the Reverend Jimmy Allen Thomas of the church.

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Proud descendants of Thomas Morris Chester pose for pictures with the new tombstone.»At right, proud descendants of Thomas Morris Chester take time to pose for pictures with the new tombstone for their famous ancestor.  From left: Mr. Ernest Dennis, Mr. Gregory Richardson, and Mr. James  Richardson.

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Flags

«  From Left:  Mr. James Richardson, Mr. Ernest Dennis, Mr. G. Y. Gbamakollie, Rev. Samuel O. Richardson, and Mr. Gregory Richardson.

 

Chester's funeral notice from The Patriot, 1892
Back to Page 1 of Photos
Go to Photos from Conference

All photos on this page and on the preceding page are by George F. Nagle and are property of Afrolumens Project.  Please contact the site editor for permission to republish photos.

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This page was updated February 22, 2005.