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Bristol Street

This street is named after Bristol Baker, a Black American Revolutionary War veteran, from New Haven. Baker was one of the many enslaved African Americans who fought in the war for U.S. Independence. In fact, approximately 8,000 African Americans fought alongside the U.S. colonies in this war. Nearly 20,000 African Americans fought with the British -- you might wonder why. Well, the British Army promised Black soldiers who fought on their side freedom from slavery. The American colonies did not as a whole make the same promise. 

In Connecticut some slavers told enslaved Black men that they would be freed if they fought in the war. In some cases, they kept their word, and in some cases they betrayed the Black soldiers. Jack Arabus of Stratford, for example, was promised and then denied his freedom after serving in the war for six years. Arabas ran away and was caught and jailed in New Haven. He then sued the man who enslaved him, and won his freedom.

After serving in three different regiments and fighting for six years, Bristol Baker returned to Connecticut. In 1784, Baker was granted the freedom he had always deserved. He lived as a free man in New Haven for nine years before passing away in 1793. 

A Peoples' History of Dixwell
  1. Dixwell Tour Intro
  2. Hillhouse High School
  3. Directions to Monterey Jazz Club
  4. Monterey Jazz Club
  5. Directions to Hannah Gray Home
  6. Hannah Gray Home
  7. Directions to John Daniels Place
  8. John Daniels Place
  9. Directions to Goffe Street School
  10. Goffe Street School
  11. Directions to Negro YMCA
  12. Negro YMCA
  13. Directions to Masonic Temple
  14. Masonic Temple
  15. Directions to Q House
  16. Q House
  17. Directions to Bristol Street
  18. Bristol Street
  19. Directions to Grove Street Cemetery
  20. Grove Street Cemetery
  21. Directions to Attempt to Make an HBCU in New Haven
  22. Attempt to Create HBCU in New Haven
  23. Directions to Yale Law School
  24. Jane Matilda Bolin and Pauli Murray
  25. Directions to Grace Hopper College
  26. College Renamed
  27. Directions Back to Hillhouse High School
  28. End of Dixwell Tour