Gwendora Reese, 2019 Grand Marshal photo courtesy Washington Post
by: Rande Davis and Skip Etheridge
  Gwendora Reese: The 2019 Poolesville Day
Grand Marshal

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The 2019 Poolesville Day Committee has announced its Grand Marshal to lead
this year’s parade on September 21.

Gwendora Reese, a direct descendent of Sugarland, one of the African American communities that surround Poolesville, which was originated and owned by freed slaves, was chosen for her years of service to preserving the important history of those proud and industrious people.

Ms. Reese’s great-grandfather, Phillip Johnson, was one of the original members of the Sugarland community which is located off of Sugarland Road. He had been a former slave who had shared many firsthand accounts of slave life with her while she was still a child. Although very few Sugarland descendants reside in the Poolesville community today, Ms. Reese felt a need to honor the memory of him, the community, and their many impressive achievements. Consequently, in 1995, Ms. Reese established the Sugarland Ethno-History Project and began the painstaking process of documenting the history of the freed slaves
in the community and their historical impact on the Town of Poolesville.

Even though most of the original residents were uneducated and unable to read or write, Ms. Reese has been able to scribe their oral history from decedents as well as from documents maintained by St. Paul’s Community Church. In 1996,
the church officially became a National Historic site.

To date, Reese and supporters of the project have collected more than a
thousand artifacts and documents. When the National Museum of African
American History and Culture opened in 2015, pictures from the Sugarland
community were selected to represent slave and post-slavery life. 
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2019 Parade Attendees
We were proud to bring you the following participants in 2019.
Bat-T
Browningsville Cornet Band
Cabin John Park Vol. Fire Dept.
Calleva
Capital Fence Inc
Cheer Prodigy All-Stars
Combine
CoMMotion Dance Studio
Council-member Andrew Friedson
Cub Scout Pack 694
Discovery Early Learning Center
Elf Preschool
Emily Claire McNeal - Miss Maryland Teen
Frances D Ichijo
Frederick Foot and Ankle
Gary Young
Girl scout brownies (walking for WUMCO)
Girl Scouts
Girls On The Run
Global Ecology Studies Program/ Poolesville High School
Hayden Legal Services LLC
Jack Wilson
Katie Woods
Knights of Columbus
Lost and Found Donkey Rescue
M-NC Park Police Mounted unit
Madison Fields
Madison Fields/Madison House Autism Foundation
Mary Kuruppu
Maryland for Bernie Sanders
Mexican Grill
Monocacy Elementary School PTA

Other large Farm Equipment
PAA Athletics
PACC
Patowmack Bowfishing Charters
Phil Abel
PHS Boys JV/Varsity Soccer Teams
PHS Boys Soccer Team
PHS Football
Poolesville Area Senior Center
Poolesville Green
Poolesville High School Poms
Poolesville High School Varsity Cheer
Poolesville High School Volleyball Team
Poolesville Lodge #97 of the I.O.O.F.
Poolesville Poms
Poolesville United FC
Poolesville Varsity POMS
Poolesville Veterinary Clinic
Poolesville Younglife
Post 247 American Legion
RC Jones
Roger mason
Rural Women's Republican Club
Scout Troop 496
SERVPRO of Poolesville/Clarksburg/Damascus
Star Gazing Farm Animal Sanctuary
Students Against Destructive Decisions
Ted Zoerner
The Potomac Hunt
Tinkus Wapurys Va Usa
Vince Doring
Zumba-Poolesville
Special appearance by the Washington Nationals' Mascots - George Washington and Screech .