21 Seventh Street – Owned by Nathan and Mary (Polly) Johnson

New Bedford Pathways: Tour 2 "Old Bedford Village"

21 Seventh Street – Owned by Nathan and Mary (Polly) Johnson

New Bedford, Massachusetts 02740, United States

Created By: New Bedford Preservation Society


21 Seventh Street, Nathan and Mary (Polly) JohnsonNational Historic Landmark

Federal and Greek Revival Styles

21 Seventh Street, built by Nathan Johnson, is a mix of both the Federal and Greek Revival styles. The original two-story house built in the Federal style is attached to the circa 1855 Greek Revival front that sits on Seventh Street. Nathan and Polly Johnson owned several properties in this area, but 21 Seventh Street was their primary residence. The Johnsons were abolitionists and members of the anti-slavery society and active participants on the Underground Railroad. In 1838, the Johnsons offered shelter to Frederick Johnson, a recently escaped slave and Anna, his free-born wife. While staying with the Johnsons, Frederick changed his last name to Douglass with encouragement from Nathan Johnson. While living in New Bedford, Frederick Douglass began his journey as a national abolitionist and civil rights leader. Douglass actually remained in New Bedford until 1842, when he left to travel and lecture on his experiences as a slave to abolitionist groups throughout the country.

This point of interest is part of the tour: New Bedford Pathways: Tour 2 "Old Bedford Village"


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