By 1829, James F. Brown, a manumitted enslaved person from Maryland, finds work as a Master Gardener at Mount Gulian, the Verplanck’s estate in Fishkill Landing, New York. Brown kept diaries of his daily life and was very active in the 19th century horticulture movement. He attended meetings and corresponded with important horticulturists of the day such as Andrew Jackson Downing and Henry Winthrop Sargent.

Armstead, Myra B. Young. Freedom’s Gardener: James F. Brown, Horticulture, and the Hudson Valley in Antebellum America. (New York: New York University Press, 2013).

See also the James F. Brown Papers, 1827-1866 at The New-York Historical Society.