1850 ladies: With Freedom comes duty: The 54th Regiment and the war effort

1850 ladies: With Freedom comes duty: The 54th Regiment and the war effort

850 ladies: With Freedom comes duty: The 54th Regiment and the war effort.

Ruth and Abby, the 1850s ladies, is a living history program of the New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park. It is a program used to educate the public and convey a sense of the everyday life of women in New Bedford during the prosperous whaling era.

During the 1850s, the building at 33 William Street in downtown New Bedford was the New Bedford Institution for Savings. Ruth Bly had a safe deposit box in the vault of that bank. Ruth and her friend and neighbor, Abby Almy, discovered that if they remained in the vault for exactly 22 minutes, they would be transported through time to the present day. Disconcerting at first, the two ladies have come to enjoy visits to the 21st century. They happily share stories of their life in New Bedford during the prosperous whaling era. Seeing history through the eyes of people who lived it brings life to facts and dates and helps people get a real feel for the time period. The ladies encourage people to interact, ask questions, and have fun learning about the people and events of 19th century New Bedford.

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