“Espionage and Enslavement in the Revolution” – Virtual Book Talk
The East Hampton Library’s Long Island Collection will present a live Zoom discussion with author Claire Bellerjeau about her book “Espionage and Enslavement in the Revolution: The True Story of Robert Townsend and Elizabeth.” The book tells the story of Robert Townsend, a key member of the Culper Spy Ring, and his extraordinary efforts to rescue Elizabeth, an enslaved woman who had run away from his family and was re-enslaved. Documents from the Long Island Collection played a key role in telling this story. Claire Bellerjeau currently serves as historian and director of education at Raynham Hall Museum in Oyster Bay, New York, and has been researching the Townsend family and their slaves for over sixteen years, including curating a yearlong exhibit on the Townsend “Slave Bible” in 2005. She has spoken internationally and published several articles in scholarly journals about life and artifacts of colonial New York.