Cummings Family Hosts Pingree at Historic Abyssinian on Portland’s East End


Congresswoman Chellie Pingree (D) on a Guided Tour with Pamela Cummings of the Historic Abyssinian Meeting House Yesterday.  (Both Photographs Provided by Pingree’s Office).

The Historic Abyssinian Meeting House, 73 Newbury Street,  on the East End of Portland Was the Site of a Tour by Congresswoman Chellie Pingree (D) Yesterday.  Construction of it Began in 1828 and it was Part of the Underground Railroad.

Congresswoman Chellie Pingree (D). joined the Cummings family on a guided tour of the historic Abyssinian Meeting House (AMH), 73 Newbury Street on the East End of Portland to see first-hand how the $1.7 million in funding she secured will help finally complete the restoration effort.   Pamela Cummings, who guided Congresswoman Pingree on the tour and her father, Leonard, have led the Committee to Restore the Abyssinian since 1998.

“It was an honor and a privilege to join the Cummings family on a tour of the AMH.  Their 25 year effort to restore this landmark will finally be complete and I was proud to help make that possible through my role on the House Appropriations Committee,” said Pingree in a press release issued this morning by her office.

The press release continued:  “With this vital funding, the Abyssinian will become a living place of history, giving our community and all those who visit the opportunity to step into the past and learn about the important role the Abyssinian had in seminal events in our shared history, such as the Undergroud Railroad and advocating for the abolition of slavery.  It’s wonderful to see this cornerstone of Portland’s two-century old Black community begin a new chapter.”

“For 25 years, our mission has been to restore the Abyssinian.  We have held true to that vision, and now we can create a living, historic memory for people because to truly understand the Abyssinian, you have to feel the life and struggles that once existed there,” said Pamela Cummings, President of the Committee to Restore the Abyssinian.  “My family and the Committee can’t thank Congresswoman Pingree enough for working to secure this federal funding. With it, we’re closer than ever before to bringing this piece of Black history back to life.”

For more background information on the federal funding secured by Congresswoman Pingree, plese visit post herein dated March 9, 2022.  This blogger had the memoracble pleasure of sitting with Deborah Cummings (and her young daughter) late into the night in 1998, at a city council meeting when it returned the deed to the Committee for $250.