This sophisticated Black man lived in the United States at a time most people who looked like him were enslaved and considered subhuman. Even those who were free were usually limited to a small set of occupations. Aaron Hewlett, however, managed to find a way to prosper here in Cambridge.
Throughout “Love Story,” viewers can glimpse Cambridge before urban renewal, cellphones and personal computers, and much of the film’s visual honesty comes from director Arthur Hiller’s portrayal of star-crossed lovers’ newlywed life in the Agassiz neighborhood (before gentrification).
History Cambridge hosted Harvard and Simmons educators at History Cafés in the spring exploring the history of the city’s Black community, including abolitionist Harriet Jacobs, who ran boarding houses in the city, and threads of the Black experience through the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries.
The first mention of slavery in Cambridge is from 1639, in a reference to a “Moor” living in the household of Nathaniel Eaton, master of Harvard College. By the 1770s, several of the wealthiest residents of Brattle Street (otherwise known as Tory Row) held multiple people in bondage.