Voices of Baltimore: Black, White and Gray
Working to combat mass incarceration and hunger in West Baltimore, Dominique Stevenson frequented Sandtown for years prior to Freddie Gray’s arrest. Serving as Director for the American Friends Service Committee’s Friend of a Friend program, she and others had been looking for a physical place to operate out of in the neighborhood when the property that would become the Tubman House caught their eye.
Partially spurred by the governor’s announcement about demolitions, the Tubman House coalesced around the idea of working with and not for the surrounding community. Programming at the house includes arts, history, and activism, and a large mural of Harriet Tubman adorns one wall.
Stevenson believes the property is “historically significant” because of its proximity to Freddie Gray’s arrest site, which is across the street, and says the organizers are fighting to preserve community use of the building and lot. The city has already paid a contractor to demolish the row, she says, but she hopes the work at the Tubman House inspires other people to consider ways to “push back” against power.