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Lexington to Hold Quock Walker Day Events and Festivities on Saturday

LEXINGTON — On Saturday, the Association of Black Citizens of Lexington will host a community commemoration of Massachusetts Emancipation Day, otherwise known as Quock Walker Day, with a trail walk and opening ceremony as part of a family-friendly festival featuring history, music, culture and activities for adults and children of all ages.


Fourth Annual Quock Walker Day Hike for Freedom
Saturday, July 6, 8:00 a. m. – 10:00 a. m.
Bowman Elementary School. 9 Philip Rd, Lexington, MA

Fourth Annual Quock Walker Day Community Celebration
Saturday, July 6, 11:00 a. m – 2:00 p. m.
Lexington Visitors Center. 1875 Massachusetts Avenue Lexington, MA


Quock Walker Day honors the July 1783 decision of the Massachusetts Supreme Court that Quock Walker, a freedom-seeking Black man, was the victim of assault and battery by a White enslaver, and that ideas of slavery and perpetual servitude were incompatible with the Massachusetts constitution.

The case was prosecuted by Robert Treat Paine, the first Attorney General of Massachusetts, and one of the signatories of the Declaration of Independence.

The holiday was first observed in Lexington in 2021 and recognized as a statewide holiday in 2023 by Governor Maura Healey. The Governor’s Proclamation will be read at the event by State Senator Cindy Friedman.

The event is hosted by the Association of Black Citizens of Lexington, and is supported by the Lex250 Commission, the organizer of the 250th Anniversary Celebrations of the Battle of Lexington in 1775. The weekend events will also recognize Black patriots who fought during the battle and supported the patriot cause in other ways.

Available for comment, both during and before the event, is Sean Osborne, Association of Black Citizens of Lexington Historian and leader of the campaign to recognize MA Emancipation Day.

(Media are kindly asked to contact Nik Kaurin via [email protected] or (339) 338-3688 to arrange advance interviews or RSVP for the opening ceremony).

Governor’s Proclamation for MA Emancipation Day. (Photo Courtesy Office of the Governor)