Charles Reason

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NYPL ID number: 104235
Portrait Collection




Photographs and Prints Division, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, The New York Public Library, Astor, Lenox and Tilden Foundations
The younger brother of Patrick Reason, Charles also attended the Mulberry Street School in the late 1820s where he excelled as a student. After graduation, he dedicated himself to a life of public activism, fighting for the abolitionist cause ase well as the restitution of black male suffrage taken away by an 1822 amendment to the State constitution. A member of several literary societies that flourished in the black communit in the 1830s and 1840s, Charles gave lectures of Milton and Wordsworth and dabbled in poetry writing.

Above all, Charles was devoted to the cause of black education. As principal teacher at the Laurens Street school, he taught Philip White in the late 1830s. Years later, he became Maritcha Lyons's teacher.


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Denison's, “Charles Reason,” Black Gotham Archive, accessed July 10, 2018,