This week in New England history: May 2-8

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A list of significant dates in New England history:

May 3

1845: Macon B. Allan is admitted to the Massachusetts bar, making him the first licensed African-American attorney.

May 4

John Adams

John Adams

1780: James Bowdoin, John Adams, Samuel Adams, John Hancock, and Robert Treat Paine found the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in Boston in the midst of the War for Independence. The Academy is created to bring thought leaders together to address critical issues of the day and seek out avenues of action.

May 8

Phillis Wheatley

Phillis Wheatley

1753: Phillis Wheatley, acclaimed poet and author, is born in West Africa. As a young girl, she is brought to Boston on a slave ship and purchased by John Wheatley as a personal servant to his wife. She is educated in Boston and goes on to become the first black woman to publish poetry in the American colonies.