Gail Shaffer Blankenau

Gail Shaffer Blankenau

1pm @Red Cloud Opera House Art Gallery
April 5, 2024

Author and historian Gail Shaffer Blankenau will join us for a talk and signing of her new book, Journey to Freedom: Uncovering the Grayson Sisters' Escape from Nebraska Territory, at the Red Cloud Opera House auditorium at 1:00 p.m. central time. Blankenau's book tells the story of Celia and Eliza Grayson, two enslaved sisters who escaped from their enslaver Stephen F. Nuckolls in 1858.  

According to the University of Nebraska Press, "Gail Shaffer Blankenau provides the first detailed history of Black enslavement in Nebraska Territory and the escape of these two enslaved Black women from Nebraska City. Drawing on multiple collections, records, and slave narratives, Journey to Freedom sheds light on the Graysons’ courage and agency as they became high-profile figures in the national debate between proslavery and antislavery factions in the antebellum period."

1:00 p.m. Author talk with Gail Shaffer Blankenau
2:00 p.m. Book signing 

About Gail Shaffer Blankenau

Gail Shaffer Blankenau is a professional genealogist, historian, speaker, and author. She holds an MA degree in history from the University of Nebraska-Kearney and in 2023 she received the James L. Sellers prize for her article about the Grayson sisters in a volume of Nebraska History magazine. Blankenau is from Nebraska and currently lives in Lincoln.