NORWICH, CT — Congressman Rob Simmons offered a salute to the contractors and craftsman who helped with renovations and installations on the famous sea-vessel theAmistad.

In 1839, off the coast of Cuba, 53 enslaved Africans rebelled against their captors on the Amistad. When the ship was seized and brought to New London, the Africans were sent to prison and put on trial before the U.S. Supreme Court. In that trial, the Africans won their freedom after John Quincy Adams argued on their behalf.

“The Amistad is a living museum of part of America’s past,” said Simmons. “We would not have this educational tool if it were not for the hard work of many individuals who donated their time and resources to the effort.”

The Southeast Connecticut Chapter of the Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors Association (PHCC) worked to install the plumbing and heating systems as the ship was built at Mystic Seaport. During the summer of 2000, a number of plumbing contractor volunteers put the finishing touches on the project.

“The Amistad is a symbol of the struggle for human rights and human dignity and a reminder that all people deserve and desire to be free. As we remember these lessons of the ship, let us remember those who donated their skill and their time to this construction,” said Simmons.

Publication date: 06/11/2001