Abby Kelley Foster

abby kelley foster

Meet Massachusetts’ radical abolitionist, human and women’s rights activist, Abby Kelley Foster. Travel back to 1854 and enter her world—a tumultuous time when social and political differences divided our country- a time not unlike our own. Hear Abby’s emotionally powerful orations against slavery and prejudice, which changed the hearts and minds of many. See how one person can effect extraordinary changes in society by sheer determination, perseverance and hard work. A Q&A will follow.

The play features actress Lynne McKenney Lydick as Abby Kelley Foster.

Yours for humanity – Abby is a program of the Worcester Women’s History Project.


Audience Critiques on Yours For Humanity – Abby

Mrs. McKenney-Lydick was an amazing actress and was very informational. I would have liked to have been able to ask the question about Abby having a school named after her.

I felt transported back to the 1850’s.

She was so passionate about her character.

I loved the personal connection to her daughter!!

Her performance was so real. You could really see the effects of Abby’s life in the performance.

Her emotional connection to her character was great.

Her performance was extremely believable and emotional.

It was interesting to see the way women’s lives were in the 1800’s.

The performance on Friday was absolutely amazing. The woman playing Abby Kelly Foster did such an amazing job. I felt as if I was actually there listening to her speech. Overall it was really fantastic.

Mrs. McKenney- Lydick was totally in character. She gave us a vibe that we were in it. It was so intense, it made us not want to take our eyes off of her. The performance was very well developed.

I loved how she made the audience feel connected with eye contact.

Very informative on the life of Abby Kelly Foster. I probably learned more about this woman with this performance  than a day’s worth of reading. Beautiful performance!

It seemed like Abby Kelly was standing in front of me.

Being a theater student, this performance inspired me to work harder on my craft. Her performance made me want to make a change in the world. I was almost teary-eyed by the sheer emotion she emitted into the room.

It was very personal. How could she leave her husband and daughter?

The performance was actually really cool. She created images and scenes in my mind as if I were actually there. It was really amazing that Abby Kelly Foster the first woman lecturer and she was strong and moving. She persuaded so many people to join her in the ant-slavery movement.

The performance on Friday was great. She did an awesome job with her acting and it almost seemed like I was in it. Her outfit and  hairdo looked exactly like Abby Kelly Foster and the way she spoke convinced me what kind of person she was.

It was kind of exciting to find out someone who made history from Worcester!

I wish I could have asked if she ever got in trouble trying to help slaves escape.

A great amount of energy.

I thought the performance was educational and entertaining. There wasn’t a dull moment during the performance and she really engaged the audience. I’m sure that people left the performance entertained and with new knowledge.

The performance was amazing. I loved it.

I really felt like I was watching Abby Kelly Foster give a speech.

The Abby Kelly Foster performance was one of the best one person shows I have ever seen. What made it really special was the clear passion for the show itself from the actress.


Download a copy of the play’s brochure here.


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Friends volunteers of all ages in period clothing, celebrating the 4th of July in the annual Canterbury parade.

Friends volunteers of all ages in period clothing, celebrating the 4th of July in the annual Canterbury parade.