Ardent Anti-Slavery Activist used Mansion as Station on Underground Railroad
MILLBURY, MA - A descendant of those that served in George Washington's Continental Army, Asa Waters Senior will be honored Saturday July 1st by Worcester's chapters of the descendants of the American Revolution from 8 a.m. to noon at the Asa Waters Mansion, 123 Elm Street, in Millbury. The event is free and welcomes the public.
Water's family engendered a "natural aristocracy" in Millbury that extended to the Great-Grandson of Asa Waters II - William Howard Taft, who would become President of the U.S. in 1908. Legend has it that Asa Waters III, an ardent anti-slavery activist, used the mansion as a station on the Underground Railroad, helping runaway slaves escape to freedom.
At 8 a.m., Colonial uniformed descendants of patriots who served in the American Revolution will muster at the Asa Waters Mansion and proceed with those attending to the Grass Hill Cemetery in West Millbury. After the ceremonial marking at Asa Waters' resting place, the group will return to the mansion for a reception at 10 a.m. There will be speakers from various military societies including the keynote address by Colonel Leonid Kondratiuk, Director, Historical Services, Office of the Adjutant General of the Massachusetts National Guard.
Immediately following the speakers there will be presentations by the Sons of the American Revolution (SAR) to award those that have helped to support and promote patriotism in our community. The theme of the event is to honor patriots (both black and white) that served from the Blackstone Valley in the American Revolution.
Refreshments will follow the reception on the grounds weather permitting. There will be representatives from the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) and the Children of the American Revolution (CAR) to answer questions on finding out if your family tree goes back to the American Revolution and if so, how you may be able to join one of the patriotic societies in attendance.
The recently restored Asa Waters Mansion is one of the crown jewels of the Blackstone Valley. Asa Waters, the 2nd, had this magnificent home built in 1826. A successful gunsmith and entrepreneur, he envisioned a structure that would reflect both his affection for his wife, and his success in the business world. He wanted it to be one of the most beautiful in the country.