Warren County Memorial Library will host North Carolina Humanities Council Road Scholar Laurel Sneed for a discussion entitled, “Thomas Day, Cabinet Maker: Man in the Middle.” on Thursday, May 30, from 1 to 2 p.m. 

A black artisan and businessman, Day crafted furniture and ran a successful store during the height of slavery. Described by the New York Times as a “major antebellum figure,” he stood at the center of competing forces in 19th-century America: between black and white, slave and free, North and South, Africa and America, and art and craft. 

Dramatic new research is forcing a re-interpretation of the complex layers of identity Day created to maintain his personal integrity as a human being, while living with the racism of the antebellum South. 

This presentation by filmmaker, educator, and Sneed, a longtime Thomas Day researcher, encourages audience member participation as they analyze the historical evidence, savor his furniture’s legacy, and explore the mystery of one of the state’s most extraordinary and historical figures.

The library is at 119 S. Front St., Warrenton, and can be reached by calling 252-257-4990. All library programs are free and open to the public. Visit wcmlibrary.org for event details and additional programs offered.