The Summer of Freedom — A Preppy Girl and the Sign that Changed her Thinking

A hero is someone who understands the responsibility that comes with his freedom. — Bob Dylan

Women’s Peace Encampment — Romulus, NY 1983

In the summer of 1983 I had just finished my junior year of high school. Life was good. I would be a senior next year. I was confident about my college applications. I had my driver’s license and I had just met some new friends at a brief summer camp I attended. These friends lived several towns over in the small upstate New York town of Romulus. Together, Sarah, Tom, Rob and I planned long lazy weekends on Seneca Lake.

The summer of 1983 was an uncharacteristically turbulent one for the town of Romulus. Home to the Seneca Army Depot, this quiet rural farming community became the epicenter of a wave of protests that season, as the Seneca Women’s Encampment for a Future of Peace and Justice took up residence in a dilapidated farmhouse on the outskirts of town.

The small depot served as a munitions storage and disposal location with a well-known, but officially unconfirmed, history of ties to the Manhattan Project and cold war nuclear stockpiling. Residents of the small town were largely supportive of the military and smugly proud of their mostly hidden contribution to national defense.



Donna L Roberts, PhD (Psych Pstuff)

Writer and university professor researching the human condition, generational studies, human and animal rights, and the intersection of art and psychology