On September 25, the Camden County Historical Society unveiled a third historical marker indicating a site where enslaved Africans were sold in Camden.
The new marker is located at Cooper Poynt Park, the site of the Cooper Poynt Ferry. Enslaved people were sold off of ferries there between 1761 and 1765. The newest marker is the last of three historical markers acknowledging the sale of enslaved people throughout Camden. The second marker on the corner of Federal Street and Jersey Joe Walcott Boulevard was dedicated on June 17, 2019,. The first marker, located on the corner of Cooper and Front streets, was dedicated in 2017.
At the unveiling ceremony speakers highlighted the legacy of slavery today. “Without Black history, we would not have many of the great edifices that we see in Philadelphia, Camden and many cities across the nation. So where do we move forward beyond this? Where do we go? America, South Jersey, Camden County, recognize and notice the people that you have in your hands, for this country to move forward,” said Wasim Muhammad, Camden School Board president.
The ceremony also included a prayer by Rev. Dr. Charles McNeil, pastor of Grace Temple Baptist Church, and a reading by poet Sandra Turner-Barnes.
Historians estimate that as many as 800 people were sold at the three sites in Camden.