Learning from our past, shaping the future


Paul Robeson was a scholar, an all American athlete, an artist, and an activist.  The son of a former slave turned preacher, he rose to prominence at a point in history when segregation was legal in the country.

He continues to serve as an inspiration to people of all races and walks of life today.  Read more >


Episode 6: Reflections on Robeson 125

The latest edition of our podcast is our reflection on the wonderful two-week commemoration of the 125th birthday of Paul Robeson, Princeton’s native son.

In this issue we hear from American Bass Baritone Mark S. Doss who serenaded a cohort of Robeson Alliance members and Scholars along with several new friends at Lincoln Center’s Here I Stand concert. The intimate setting was the perfect launching point for our celebration.

We will also meet the adult class of Robeson Fellows this year—artists whose work has inspired us to think about poetry, photography, fashion and film in brand new ways. We will begin by pausing to remember the late, great Harry Belafonte—a civil rights icon, entertainment legend and friend of Paul Robeson who passed on April 25th 2023.


We pay tribute to the life and legacy of Harry Belafonte, an extraordinary artist, activist, and humanitarian. His powerful voice and magnetic presence on stage enchanted audiences around the world, while his unwavering commitment to social justice inspired generations to act.

Watch Harry Belafonte’s interview on PBS American Masters, where he recounts the day he met Paul Robeson and the profound impact Robeson made on his life as a mentor and role model.

Harry Belafonte with Paul Robeson House of Princeton board


Arts Council of Princeton Robeson Tomato mural

The Arts Council of Princeton’s Robeson tomato mural currently on Spring Street in Princeton. Many thanks to the Arts Council of Princeton, and the incredible sponsors: NOFA NJ, Send Hunger Packing Princeton, Princeton University Office of Community and Regional Affairs, and Kucker Haney Paint Co.

Read about our Robeson Freedom Garden campaign in Town Topics.

A guiding principle of the Robeson Freedom Garden is honorable harvest. “Honorable harvest – to take only what is given, to use it well, to be grateful for the gift, and to reciprocate the gift.”

We will gather in September 2023 to celebrate Robeson tomato gardens planted in the 2023-24 growing season. We invite every citizen to join us in this campaign of dignity and freedom that celebrates community and collective action toward reaching the goal of making ROBESON a HOUSEhold name.


The “Paul Robeson House,” is a residential property located at 110 Witherspoon Street, Princeton, NJ, where Paul Robeson was born. It has been the focal point for advancement of the African American community in the Princeton area for over a century.

It was the residence for Reverend Drew Robeson and his family when he was appointed pastor of the Witherspoon Street Presbyterian Church in 1879. The property later transferred to private ownership and became the “first residence” for many migrant workers, domestics, and laborers that came to Princeton. Through the years, it has served as a gathering place and service center for neighborhood residents. Many of the new residents settled in the Witherspoon-Jackson community and became the driving force for social, educational, and civic advancement of the community.


Rozyln Anderson Flood

Rozyln Anderson Flood

Board Member

As both an attorney and a poet, I was drawn to Paul Robeson’s advocacy for racial and social justice, eloquently shaped by his artist’s soul.

As Paul explained, “The artist must elect to fight for freedom or slavery.  I have made my choice.  I had no alternative.”



Dr. Joy Barnes-Johnson

Dr. Joy Barnes-Johnson

Board Member

“The Paul Robeson House project builds on an important legacy of Mr. Robeson: full human dignity.”

As an idea, the house serves as a center within a historic district known to be a friendly neighborhood in its community. The complexity of Robeson’s work to address economic, aesthetic, and political freedom can be explored by all who will come.


Kevin Gift

Kevin Gift

Board Member

“Paul Robeson’s legacy inspires me to use my talents to build a peaceful world with equal justice for all.”

Paul Robeson used his abundant God given talents to turn a vision for world peace and human equality into reality. Our world is better today due to his positive influence and efforts.

Jeffrey Yuan

Jeffrey Yuan

Board Member

“The Robeson House can be a center and vehicle for greater social good and become a manifestation of Robeson’s legacy that the world should and must be a better place for all.”

Don’t go along to get along. Be willing to sacrifice to do what you know is right.