Famous Afro-Americans Historical Sites Recognized by the National Park System
Your feedback is important to us!
After viewing our curriculum units, please take a few minutes to help us understand how the units, which were created by public school teachers, may be useful to others.
JOHN J. SMITH HOUSE
John J. Smith lived at 86 Pinckney Street from 1878 to 1893. He was born free in Richmond, Virginia on November 2, 1820, Mr. Smith moved to Boston twenty-eight years later. He established himself as a barber (hairdresser). His shop at the corner of Howard and Bulfinch Streets was a center for Black abolitionist activity and a rendezvous for fugitive slaves. During the Civil War, Smith was stationed in Washington, D.C. and worked as a recruiting officer for the all-Black 5th cavalry. After the war, Smith was elected to the Mass. House of Representatives in 1868, 1869 and 1872. In 1878, the year he moved to this house, he was appointed to the Boston Common Council.