The Robbins House is a Concord-based nonprofit organization focused on raising awareness of Concord’s African, African American, and antislavery history from the 17th through the 19th centuries. Our mission is to reveal the little known African American history of Concord and its regional and national importance. Our vision is to inspire conversation, expand understanding and contribute to a better society.

Our goals are:

  1. To unearth and share the stories of Concord’s earliest African Americans (particularly residents of African descent in the 19th century Robbins House);
  2. To create educational resources based upon the experience of Concord’s early African Americans; and
  3. Connect their early fights for freedom and equality with modern social justice movements.

Board of Directors
Maria Madison, President
Liz Clayton, Vice President
Anne Forbes, Clerk
Jim Callahan, Treasurer
Kim Frederick, Educator, Concord Academy
Johanna Glazer, Educator, Concord-Carlisle High School
Jayne Gordon, Historian / Interpretation Educator
Angelica King-Shaw, Student Interpreter
David Lincoln, Historian / Interpreter
Polly Peterson, Educator / Writer
Michelle Purrington, Educator / Interpreter

In Memorian [2015]
Nancy Ehrlich, Material Culture Anthropology
Kelly Goode, Media Specialist

Staff & Scholars
Elon Cooke, Humanities Director & Assistant to the Scholar-in-Residence
John Hannigan, Scholar-in-Residence
Rebecca Sommers, Bookkeeper

Advisors
Current Advisory Board members and consultants have been extremely generous with their time and support in championing the Robbins House Interpretive Center:

  • Tom Beardsley, Old Manse Site Director
  • Johanna & John Boynton, Boynton/Brennan Builders, LCC
  • Dinah Buechner-Visher, President, Lookout Foundation
  • Professor Lois Brown, Wesleyan University
  • Nancy Butman, Historical Commission Emeritus
  • Denise Dennis, Dennis Farm Trust, Colonial African American Descendant
  • Professor Robert Gross, University of Connecticut Emeritus, author, Minutemen and their World
  • David Fisher, Landscape Architect
  • Lorell Gifford, Webmaster, Rivervisions
  • Carol Gupta, author, Concord’s Great Meadows: A Human History
  • Kate Atkinson Kaplan, Development Management
  • Professor Elise Lemire, SUNY Purchase, author, Black Walden: Slavery and Its Aftermath in Concord, Massachusetts
  • Leslie Obleschuk, Chief of Interpretation & Education, Minute Man National Historical Park
  • Ronni Olitsky, Lead Interpreter
  • Professor Joanne Pope Melish, University of Kentucky, author, Disowning Slavery: Gradual Emancipation and ‘Race’ in New England, 1789-1860
  • Rob Morrison, Educator, The Fenn School
  • Professor Sandra Herbert Petrulionis, Penn State Altoona, author, To Set Things Right: The Antislavery Movement in Thoreau’s Concord 
  • Chris Rhodes, Multimedia Consultant
  • Larry Sorli, Preservation Architect
  • Diann Strausberg, Old Manse Education Director
  • Donna Thomas, Graphic Designer
  • Jan Turnquist, Orchard House Director
  • Professor Charles Willie, Harvard University Emeritus
  • Patrick Woods
  • Joe Zellner, Concord Public Schools Emeritus, Civil War 54th Re-enactor
  • Linda Ziemba, Exhibits Designer, Trace Design Group

 

Partners 

  • The Robbins House works closely with the Town of Concord and in partnership with the Minuteman National Park Service, as the site by the North Bridge where the Robbins House is located is owned by the Town of Concord and leased by the NPS. Decisions affecting The Robbins House are made in conjunction with the Minuteman National Park Service.
  • The Robbins House also partners with the Old Manse, under the guidance of The Trustees of the Reservation, to provide programming and services.
  • The Robbins House is a member of the Concord Historical Collaborative.