Barnard Station - Home of Eusebious and Sarah Barnard
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Longwood Progressive Meeting

In May 1853, fifty-eight women and men temporarily left their original Friends meetings (many “read out” or disowned and not accepted back until many years after the Civil War ended). They created the Pennsylvania Yearly Meeting of Progressive Friends based on “moral accountability” and “practical righteousness.”  They built and dedicated the Longwood Progressive Meetinghouse in 1855 just in time for the Third Annual Session of the Pennsylvania Yearly Meeting of Progressive Friends. It was opened for “religious, moral, scientific and literary” purposes and activities. It always had a Quaker core, but it invited membership to all interested in supporting various reform topics. Founding members included Eusebius, his brother William and their cousin Simon Barnard; all three were also prominent stationmasters and conductors on the UGRR.

Longwood Progressive Meetinghouse was a beacon of reform, where members discussed slavery, women’s rights, capital punishment, prison reform and other issues. Speakers included Frederick Douglass, Sojourner Truth, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Susan B. Anthony, William Lloyd Garrison and Lucretia Mott.  Several became close friends of the Barnards and often stayed at their houses, particularly that of Simon Barnard in Newlin Township.  

Harriet Tubman also came to the Kennett area on occasion and in her famed 1854 Christmas Escape she led 3 of her brothers to freedom with a stop over the DE border into the free state of PA at the Pennsbury home of Longwood Progressive members Allen and Maria Agnew.

In 1855, Joseph A. Dugdale, a fellow member of Longwood Progressive Meeting, led the founding of the adjacent cemetery and embedded progressive ideals into its operations. In accordance with the founding philosophy, the cemetery’s bylaws allowed no distinction on account of color or condition in its burial plot assignments. As a result, black Civil War soldiers, doctors, and nurses who died tending to the Civil War wounded are among those laid to rest aside abolitionists and station masters of the Underground Railroad.

Eusebius Barnard and many of his family are buried at Longwood Cemetery. His first wife Sarah passed away in 1849 and buried at Marlborough Burial Grounds, but she was later moved and placed at Longwood Cemetery next to her husband Eusebius and daughter Elizabeth, who had sadly died at age 26. 

Longwood Progressive Meeting (2021), now the Brandywine Valley Tourism Information Center