Page 1 of Michael Shiner's Diary. Library of Congress

Michael Shiner's Diary, 1813-1869: A Black Man Looks at 19th Century Washington

February 4, 2014

On February 4, 2014, Leslie Anderson presented an illustrated lecture on Michael Shiner and his Diary, based on his recent publication: Life of Freed Slave Michael Shiner. Shiner was born into slavery in Maryland, was brought to Washington, D.C. about 1813 and eventually manumitted by 1840 following his owner's death. His diary, now in the holdings of the Library of Congress, records his experiences and observations during his years first as a slave and later as a freedman, working for many years at the Navy Yard. In 1867 Shiner purchased property and built a house on Capitol Hill between Ninth and Tenth Streets, D Street and North Carolina Avenue. He died in 1880 of small pox.

Leslie Anderson has served as a reference librarian in special collections in the Alexandria Public Library.

Past Lectures