Friends celebrate John Creighton Day

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Dorchester Banner/DCHS
John Creighton had a great effect on those who knew him, as well as upon the history and knowledge of Harriet Tubman, and he will be missed by all.

CAMBRIDGE — On June 25, approximately 60 friends and associates of John Creighton gathered at the Heritage Museums and Gardens of Dorchester to celebrate his life. Mr. Creighton was a historian and researcher specializing in the life of Harriet Tubman. More than that, he was a husband, father, and friend to hundreds, who were all affected by his lust for local history and his wealth of acquired knowledge achieved in his exhaustive research.

John was blessed with three children — Steven, Danny and Heidi Creighton, who all survive him as does his sister, Suzanne Trice. All but Heidi, who lives in Hawaii, attended the event, as well as two grandchildren.

In recognition of Mr. Creighton’s life and work, Dorchester County Council earlier this month proclaimed June 25 to be John Creighton Day in Dorchester County.

John was born in Wilmington, Del. on June 25, 1941. He was educated in Wilmington, received his BA from Swarthmore College and his MBA at the University of Pittsburgh. After graduation, he applied for jobs on the Eastern Shore, becoming the editor of the Cornell Maritime Press at Tidewater Publishing on Bucktown Road. He lived at the Meredith House in Cambridge for a time, and worked as groundskeeper there to the benefit of the Historical Society. It was during this occupation that he made contact with persons interested in the life of Harriet Tubman, and that contact led to his life-long passion.

The evening event began with a video tribute to John’s life, produced by Robin Caudell and narrated by Linda Duyer. A resolution was delivered by Linda Prochaska on behalf of U.S. Senators Mikulski and Cardin during the program. Rick Price, representing the County Council, spoke on behalf of the Council’s John Creighton Day proclamation, and Cambridge Mayor Victoria Jackson-Stanley spoke and delivered a Resolution of Solemn Respect on behalf of Mr. Creighton.

This event was billed as a celebration of John Creighton, poet; and as a result a number of his poems were read by Fred Pomeroy, retired teacher and waterman. Karen Somerville sang The Water is Wide, a deeply moving spiritual. John’s son, Daniel Creighton read a number of poems as well.
A representative group from the Americorps National Civilian Community Corps sang Hush, Hush, Somebody’s Calling My Name. Captain Kermit Travers spoke warmly of John, and his experiences on the water.

At the end of the program, Ms. Somersville sang the song How Great Thy Art, and the rest of the evening was turned over to audience discussion of John and his work.

The event was a touching example of how well our community comes together to celebrate a friend and loved one. Without a doubt, John Creighton had a great effect on those who knew him, as well as upon the history and knowledge of Harriet Tubman, and he will be missed by all.

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Dorchester Banner/Paul Clipper
Friends and associates of John Creighton gathered at the Heritage Museums and Gardens of Dorchester to celebrate his life on June 25, which was proclaimed John Creighton Day by the Dorchester County Council.

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