Paul Cuffe Day at Westport Elementary

In conjunction with the Westport Historical Society, Chief Two Running Elk of the Cuffe Clan of the Pocasset tribe celebrated Paul Cuffe Day with the students of Westport Elementary on January 17, 2024, Paul Cuffe’s birthday. Westport Elementary School in Westport, MA was the first racially integrated school in the United States. Paul Cuffe (1759-1817) was of African American and Native American descent, born on Cuttyhunk Island, and he later made his home in Westport. He was a Quaker who fought against slavery and sought out tolerance.

Chief Two Running Elk’s presentation included talk of his uncle’s life and the tribe, encouraging the students to be anything they want using his uncle as an example. He also spoke on the important of being kind, to have many friends all over the world, and to explore different cultures. In the days leading up to the Chief’s visit, students were taught lessons about Paul Cuffe. The program has been going on for 4 years.