The Charles Sumner Post of the Grand Army of the Republic (G.A.R.) was built in 1908 by African American veterans of the Civil War and served as a gathering place for veterans of the U.S. Colored Troops. It was named in honor of the famous Massachusetts abolitionist senator. It served as the center of African-American community life for 60 years. It is the only building of its kind in the state of Maryland, and one of only two such monuments left standing in the United States. It was named to the National Register of Historic Places in 2005.
After falling into disrepair and near demolition, a coalition of preservationists, foundations and philanthropic citizens joined together in a decade-long capital campaign and a display of generosity that amassed over half a million dollars to bring the building back to life. A complete list of organizations and individuals whose contributions made this revival a reality appears under the SUPPORTERS section of this website.
Since reopening in June 2014, the building has become a small museum, entertainment and educational space. Gradually reweaving the center into the cultural fabric of the local community while simultaneously exposing the facility as a site of national importance, it is attracting scholars, artist, students and tourism to this storied Eastern Shore hamlet.