Thomas Mundy Peterson was the first African American voter in the United States. He cast his vote in Perth Amboy, NJ on March 31,1870, the day after the Fifteen Amendment was adopted. In New Jersey, March 31 of each year is designated as Thomas Mundy Peterson Day in recognition of his historic vote.
Documentary filmmaker John Kerry Dyke, from Perth Amboy, has recently completed a new film entitled “Thomas Mundy Peterson – A Short Documentary.” The eight and a half minute short hits on the history of slavery in Perth Amboy, the Abolitionists, Eagleswood and the Underground Railroad and details of Thomas Mundy Peterson’s life in Perth Amboy. The work contains rare historic images of Perth Amboy, as well as mentions the local people involved in encouraging Thomas Mundy Peterson’s historic vote. The documentary short is airing on local cable on Comcast Channel 34 at 9pm, and can also be viewed on youtube here.