MR. HARVEY ZIEGLER

Harvey Ziegler, born March 3, 1920, is a life-long resident of Damascus, Maryland.  He will soon celebrate his 101st birthday and reminisces on his life’s journey.  He states, “I am not a quitter, I am a fighter.”  His journey thus far, and continues to be, in the words of John Lewis, “getting into good trouble.” 

Mr. Ziegler is the lone surviving sibling of 13 children.  He started working (around the age of 16) at the little stores scattered around Damascus.  He walked about ½ mile from his home to work.  He recalls when he went to the store for his mother, several white ladies would yell out to him, “Harvey, bring me some cheese” or “Harvey, bring me some butter”.  He said they would pay him five cents for his delivery services.  By today’s standards that is not much, however, during this time in history he said, “I could buy a big ole’ bag of candy!”

Our honoree attended high school from 1935-1939.   He has held several jobs such as, school bus driver, heavy equipment operator, and was a government employee.  He exercised his good trouble ethic while employed.  As a government employee, he was denied several promotions. With the aid of Congressmen and Senators, he fought for and won his rightful positions.  He proudly acknowledges that he is a firm believer in “fighting for what you believe in.”  He has served honorably with the National Association of Colored People (NAACP) for many years.  From 1959-1977 he was the Youth Advisor and helped with the integration process.  Mr. Ziegler is a veteran.  He served his country from 1941-1945 during WWII.  He served stateside and overseas in Germany.  Thank you for your service.

Mr. Ziegler and his deceased sister, Inez Ziegler McAbee, were front runners for Civil Rights in Montgomery County during segregation. They have been awarded numerous prestigious awards for their leadership. In 2004 they started a non-profit organization called The Damascus Connections Committee. This committee enabled them to support the citizens of Montgomery County with Civil Rights issues along with building unity in the community amongst all ethnic groups.

Mr. Harvey Ziegler, our friend, may God’s blessings guide, support, sustain and empower you as you continue to get into good trouble.  We have come a long way, yet we still have many rivers to cross.