Corinthian Hall Craft Intervention in Rochester, NY:

Call for volunteers and fiber artists for Aug. 21, 2019 yarn installation!


Frederick Douglass sculpture on Corinthian Street in downtown Rochester.

Help us add color, through a yarn intervention at this site, to honor the work of the Rochester Ladies Anti-Slavery Sewing Society, who invited Douglass to speak at Corinthian Hall (now a parking lot) on July 5, 1852, where he delivered his now famous Fourth of July speech.

The curators of the exhibit Crafting Democracy: Fiber Arts and Activism seek volunteers and fiber artists to leave their colorful mark on Rochester history. Help us honor a premier piece of Rochester’s abolitionist past – with yarn and thread!


A Frederick Douglass sculpture by artist Oliva Kim sits on the perimeter of a downtown parking lot on Corinthian Street, marking the historical significance of what was once a grand hall of civic engagement and protest. Built in 1849, Corinthian Hall was the site where Frederick Douglass delivered his iconic July 5, 1852 speech before the Rochester Ladies Anti-Slavery Sewing Society: “What to the slave is the Fourth of July?” The site has been a parking lot since 1928.


The time is ripe to honor the women who invited Douglass to deliver his now-renowned Fourth of July speech. This craft intervention pays homage to the women who were the benefactors of Douglass and his newspaper, The North Star, and who regularly organized anti-slavery lectures and fundraising bazaars for the abolitionist cause at Corinthian Hall. 


On August 21, 2019 (from 9-11 a.m.), co-curators Juilee Decker and Hinda Mandell will lead a yarn installation to bring vibrancy and color to this parking lot. But we need your help!

We are seeking three types of craft contributions that will be installed on the site in August:


1.    Knit or Crochet “swatches,” of any color, yarn weight and yarn fiber, measuring 7” high X 7” long.

2.    Knit or Crochet flowers of any design/size/color.

3.    Embroidery, of any color or design, measuring 7” high X 7” long.


Please send your contributions by August 15 to:


Hinda Mandell

School of Communication


92 Lomb Memorial Drive

Rochester, NY



Or, show up with your handicraft in person on installation day: 9 a.m. on Aug. 21.


We hope you will help spread the word in Rochester and beyond. Questions? Please drop us a note! (Also: If you don’t do yarn or handicraft, but would like to be part of the Aug. 21 installation, please get in touch. The more hands the merrier!) Hinda Mandell: