Robert Middleton left St. Helena at age 18, returning 45 years later after serving in the army, studying at Howard University, and a career of social work in Washington, D.C. and on an Apache Indian reservation. Today, Robert works to protect ancestral land from the effects of suburban expansion and development along the coast. The Middleton family has lived on the island for several generations, and Robert, his parents and grandparents all attended the historic Penn School. Robert is also instrumental in the work of the Ibile Indigo House. Large crops of indigo plants, some seven feet high, can be seen from the road leading past his property.