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The Jennings
The Jennings

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Inspired by Thomas L Jennings

Thomas L. Jennings (1791–1856) was an African-American tradesman and abolitionist in New York City, New York. He was a free man who operated a tailoring and dry-cleaning business, and in 1821 was the first African American to be approved for a patent. Jennings became active in working for his race and civil rights for the black community. He was appointed as assistant secretary to the First Annual Convention of the People of Color in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1831. He helped arrange legal defense for his daughter, Elizabeth Jennings, in 1854 when she challenged a private streetcar company's segregation of seating and was arrested. With two other prominent black leaders, Jennings organized the Legal Rights Association in 1855 in New York. He founded and was a trustee of the Abyssinian Baptist Church, a leader in the black community.