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Burial Place of Blanche K. Bruce

Blanche Kelso Bruce (1841-1898) was the first black man to serve a full term as U.S. senator (1875-1881), representing Mississippi. Blanche Bruce is significant to the Underground Railroad because he was born enslaved on March 1, 1854, near Farmville, in Prince Edward County, Virginia, and escaped from slavery in Missouri to freedom in Kansas during the Civil War. Like Frederick Douglass (his friend), Bruce showed the public distinction a formerly enslaved person could attain, given educational, economic, and political opportunities. He is buried at Woodlawn Cemetery in DC.