Where Was The Station In Canton Illinois For The Underground Railroad? (Solution)

What was the first underground railroad station in Illinois?

  • Quincy, Illinois, was the first Underground Railroad station across the border of Missouri—a slave state. An abolitionist, Eells was actively involved in the Underground Railroad.

Where did the Underground Railroad go through Illinois?

In the 1800s, Wheaton, Glen Ellyn, Glendale Heights, Wayne Center, Warrenville, West Chicago, Lombard, Naperville, Downers Grove, Hinsdale, Lyons and Oak Brook had stations on the Underground Railroad. Passengers from the south, southwest and western parts of the state passed through DuPage County.

Did the Underground Railroad go through Chicago?

Underground Railroad. As the terminus of most Underground Railroad routes originating in Illinois towns bordering the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers, Chicago was a hub of antislavery activity. Workers provided lodging or transportation and were sometimes personally involved in rescue efforts.

Where was the Underground Railroad in Michigan?

Cassopolis and Vandalia are two small towns in southwestern Michigan, not far from the Indiana border. These towns are some of the first stops in Michigan escaped slaves stopped at if they traveled north through Indiana. Many of Michigan’s Underground Railroad stationmasters in southwestern Michigan were Quakers.

Where were the stations on the Underground Railroad?

These were called “stations,” “safe houses,” and “depots.” The people operating them were called “stationmasters.” There were many well-used routes stretching west through Ohio to Indiana and Iowa. Others headed north through Pennsylvania and into New England or through Detroit on their way to Canada.

Where did the Underground Railroad have safe houses?

In the years leading up to the Civil War, the black abolitionist William Still offered shelter to hundreds of freedom seekers as they journeyed northward.

What cities did the Underground Railroad go through?

In the decades leading up to the American Civil War, settlements along the Detroit and Niagara Rivers were important terminals of the Underground Railroad. By 1861, some 30,000 freedom seekers resided in what is now Ontario, having escaped slave states like Kentucky and Virginia.

What is the route of the Underground Railroad?

Routes. Underground Railroad routes went north to free states and Canada, to the Caribbean, into United States western territories, and Indian territories. Some freedom seekers (escaped slaves) travelled South into Mexico for their freedom.

Why would Cairo Illinois be an important city to the Underground Railroad?

“There were a lot of railroad lines, and (U.S 51) came through Cairo. It was a real important spot for African-Americans moving north because it was the first city in the north.” In the antebellum years, Cairo was a stop on the way back to slavery.

Was Michigan part of the Underground Railroad?

Conductors on the Underground Railroad helped them find routes and ways to escape to the north. Many towns in southern Michigan were part of the Underground Railroad. Conductors hid fugitives in their homes and barns during the day. The hiding places were called depots.

Did the Underground Railroad go through Michigan?

There are at least seven known paths that led freedom seekers from various points in Michigan to the Canadian shore and it is estimated that 200 Underground Railroad stops existed throughout Michigan between the 1820s and 1865.

Did Michigan ever have slaves?

1787. The Northwest Ordinance makes slavery illegal its territories and states. Although Michigan is part of the Northwest Territory, there are enslaved people living in Michigan until 1837.

Were there tunnels in the Underground Railroad?

Contrary to popular belief, the Underground Railroad was not a series of underground tunnels. While some people did have secret rooms in their houses or carriages, the vast majority of the Underground Railroad involved people secretly helping people running away from slavery however they could.

How far did the Underground Railroad go?

Because it was dangerous to be in free states like Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Ohio, or even Massachusetts after 1850, most people hoping to escape traveled all the way to Canada. So, you could say that the Underground Railroad went from the American south to Canada.

What happened to Cesar in the Underground Railroad?

While the show doesn’t show us what happens after their encounter, Caesar comes to Cora in a dream later, confirming to viewers that he was killed. In the novel, Caesar faces a similar fate of being killed following his capture, though instead of Ridgeway and Homer, he is killed by an angry mob.

Indicators point toward mid-1800s Canton site as former Underground Railroad safe house

  • Today, the red-brick, two-story home with an unusually large (at least for Canton Township) three-acre yard, which sits near the intersection of Warren and Morton-Taylor roads, is a focal point simply because it doesn’t blend in with its surrounding environment. It’s also a popular destination for Civil War-era historians who believe it may have been a previous Underground Railroad station that briefly harbored fleeing Southern slaves en route to Canada, a voyage that would take them only two days. Many historians believe the structure on the southeast corner of two busy township roads, which is surrounded by semi-modern subdivisions, an apartment complex, and a 7-Eleven, was used for the Underground Railroad as a complex (at least during the 1800s) and potentially gravely dangerous path to freedom for slaves fleeing to Canada. A hard-core piece of proof indicating the property temporarily housed enslaved people in the mid-1850s is impossible to come by given the Underground Railroad’s as-stealthy existence, but the circumstantial evidence that does exist is rather persuasive. Jamie and Laura Flora, longtime owners of the home, have done enough study on the structure to conclude that, indeed, their old property at 43425 Warren Road did serve as a temporary resting spot for Southern slaves on the verge of achieving freedom through Canada’s gift of freedom. David Curtis, a Canton historian who has put in around 200 hours of study into the site, is compelled by the thought that the home served as an Underground Railroad safehouse, despite the fact that it will almost certainly never be confirmed beyond a reasonable doubt. “Determining whether or whether a property was a stop on the Underground Railroad (UGRR) is challenging since, by its very nature, it was not something that was widely marketed,” Curtis explained. The Athlete of the Week award goes to Canton’s Lenny Kubitski. It is planned to restore Canton’s damaged ‘Community Arch’ sculpture and reinstall it at the Ford Road crossroads. Curtis discovered tax, census, and ownership papers that dated back to the mid-1850s, none of which were 100 percent definitive in their findings. In 1852, Curtis discovered, the land was sold to John Kinyon for $3,000, according to Curtis. “This increase in the value of the land suggests that significant improvements have been made to the property, most likely the construction of a barn or a home.” It was Issacher Hughes who acquired the land in 1858. Issacher was born in a part of Steuben County where a small number of Quakers lived. Because most Quakers were strongly in favor of slavery being abolished, this has been the sole indication that the house was involved in the UGRR that I have come across.” According to the Floras, who owned the home from 1988 to 2018, they discovered documentation indicating that the Godwin family, who owned the home for several years throughout the twentieth century, discovered Civil War-era newspapers that were used as insulation in the home’s back room during that time period. “The barn was also mentioned in the (documents) as a probable hiding place for escaped slaves,” Laura Flora continued. Among the home’s fascinating features is a crawl space at the back of the building, which was designed so that fleeing slaves could have entered the home by scaling a short wall when pursued by ruthless bounty hunters and escaped into the night if a posse of curious hunters entered the house through the front door. In an interview with the Floras, a history student from Eastern Michigan University who was granted permission to inspect the house stated that she believes the remains of stepping stones next to a well on the west side of the building, which has since been filled in, provide additional evidence of the Underground Railroad. As Laura Flora pointed out, “she informed us that it was normal practice to use a clover as a symbol of safety.” “And she identified the corner of the region as something that may have been a clover,” says the narrator. More:’Dangerous’ Despite the owner’s protests, the Canton home is planned for destruction. More:The Canton Police Department provides an opportunity to learn about what it is like to be an officer. It appears that harboring fugitive slaves was extremely perilous for the proprietors of safe houses, as evidenced by an enormous mountain of documentation. Property owners who were discovered to be harboring slaves were frequently killed in public ceremonies in the expectation that the publicity would deter others from doing the same. According to the Floras, the Warren Road structure appears to be no more than the third-oldest structure in Canton. “We’ve heard that an ancient house in the township was just demolished
  • If it was the first or second oldest residence in the township, then this one is among the top-two oldest in the township,” says the historian. The Floras’ tenacity has ensured that the house has survived to this day in major part. Upon arriving at the property in early 1989, only a few months after the Floras had completed their acquisition of the historic building, Laura Flora discovered that the 1940s-era windows that she and her husband had recently fixed had been boarded up. Flora immediately realized that a rapidly growing fire had caused substantial damage to the interior of the house the night before, posing the question of whether she and her husband should rebuild the house or demolish it. They decided to restore the house. “It was a difficult decision,” Laura Flora said. “However, we take great delight in restoring heritage rather than destroying it, which is why we decided to restore.” It was rented out to strangers while the Flora’s children weren’t living there, according to the Floras. Many of them were drawn to the property because of its history and suspected links to the Underground Railroad, they said. It appeared that graduate students pursuing their master’s degrees were interested in the property throughout its last four years on the market, according to Laura Flora. “You could see they were interested in the historical aspect of the house they were living in,” says the author. At the mention of slavery, Flora’s stomach tightens as she remembers the dark chapter in our country’s history that it represents. “Just the thought of what people might do to other people makes me feel sick to my stomach,” she explained. Get in touch with reporter Ed Wright by emailing [email protected] or calling 517-375-1113.
See also:  What Happened Right After The Underground Railroad Was Done With Harriet Tubman? (Correct answer)

Canton station (Illinois) – Wikipedia

On 4th Avenue in Canton, Illinois, there is a historicChicago, Burlington, and Quincy Railroad station that is open to the public. The station, was opened in 1914, was the second constructed by the CB Q in Canton since the company began providing service to the city in the early 1860s. The CB Q, along with the Toledo, PeoriaWestern Railroad, was one of two railways that served Canton, Illinois. The station served as the departure point for business travelers, tourists, and servicemen during World War I and II, owing to the lack of paved roads in the area at the time of construction.

The station also served freight trains that transported industrial products from the surrounding area, which included primarily farming equipment and coal.

As a result, the night trains were discontinued in 1950, and passenger service to the station was discontinued entirely in 1961.

The city purchased the station from the railroad in 1989 for an undisclosed sum.

Chicago, BurlingtonQuincy Railroad Station
U.S. National Register of Historic Places
Location Along 4th Ave. between E. Elm St. and E. Chestnut St.,Canton, Illinois
Coordinates 40°33′28″N90°2′3″W / 40.55778°N 90.03417°WCoordinates:40°33′28″N90°2′3″W / 40.55778°N 90.03417°W
Area less than one acre
Built 1914
Built by Chicago, BurlingtonQuincy Railroad
Architect Swift, G.B.,Co.
NRHP referenceNo. 93000842
Added to NRHP August 31, 1993

TheChicago, Burlington, and Quincy Railroad Station was designated as a National Historic Landmark on August 31, 1993, and it was included on the National Register of Historic Places as such. It is one of four sites in Canton that are listed on the National Register of Historic Places; the others being the Parlin Library, the Ulysses G. Orendorff House, and the Orendorf Site.

Preceding station Burlington Route Following station
GormantowardSt. Louis St. Louis–Savanna NorristowardSavanna


Hennepin Canal was built in the adjacent area in 1890, and it either pioneered or developed canal methods that were subsequently employed for the construction of the Panama Canal, which is now a 105-mile park. As a major transportation center, Princeton’s railroad station, a functional historic covered bridge, and its closeness to the surrounding highway are all evidence of the town’s importance as a transportation hub. As a committed abolitionist in the mid-19th century, Owen Lovejoy utilized his Princeton mansion (now a National Historic Site) and other Princeton properties as a significant station on the Underground Railroad, which helped to escort escaping slaves to the northern states and Canada.

A station on the Underground Railroad, the Lovejoy home, now a museum and National Historic Monument, assisted fugitive slaves in their journey to freedom in the northern United States and Canada during the Civil War era.

Its importance as a center for tourists and commuters alike continues to be played out at Princeton’s historic Railroad Station.

Its building is reminiscent of the usual type of railroad stations constructed at the period, particularly in the Midwest.

The park adjacent to the station is named for Darius Miller, a former president of the Chicago, Burlington, and Quincy Train who advocated for the installation of safety measures near railroad tracks.

Day 1, Stop 13:

Drive to the town of Henry. Explore Henry, and while you’re there, stop by the wayside and listen to the audio (near the ancient lock on Cromwell Dr) translating the following phrases: Ruins of a former lock Aerial view of the Steamboat Elsie’s lighthouse Bridges across the Illinois River Henry, Illinois, is a town of 2,500 inhabitants that hugs the western bank of the Illinois River. Residents of Henry, Illinois, who were named after a general of the Illinois militia during the Blackhawk War, have a strong connection to the water.

This made it possible to navigate the river further upstream.

Farmers needed affordable transportation for their agricultural products, so the dam and lock provided a solution.

List of Sites for the Underground Railroad Travel Itinerary

KANSAS 1.John Brown Cabin -Osawatomie 2.Fort Scott National Historic Site- Bourbon County

IOWA1.Tabor Antislavery Historic District -Tabor2. George B. Hitchcock House -Lewis vicinity3.Henderson Lewelling House -Salem4.Jordan House -West Des Moines

WISCONSIN 1.Milton House -Milton

ILLINOIS 1.Owen Lovejoy House -Princeton 2.John Hossack House -Ottawa3.Dr. Richard Eells House -Quincy 4.Beecher Hall -Jacksonville5.Rutherford House- Oakland

MICHIGAN1.Dr. Nathan Thomas House -Schoolcraft2.SecondBaptist Church -Detroit

INDIANA 1.Bethel AME Church -Indianapolis 2.Levi Coffin House -Fountain City 3.Eleutherian College Classroom and Chapel Building -Lancaster4.Lyman and Asenath Hoyt House -Madison5.Madison Historic District -Madison

OHIO 1.Harriet Beecher Stowe House -Cincinnati2.JohnP. Parker House -Ripley3.John Rankin House -Ripley 4.Village of Mt. Pleasant Historic District -Mt. Pleasant 5.Wilson Bruce Evans House -Oberlin6.RushR. Sloane House -Sandusky7.Daniel Howell Hise House -Salem 8.Col. William Hubbard House -Ashtabula9. Reuben Benedict House -Marengo10.Samuel and SallyWilson House -Cincinnati11.James and Sophia ClemensFarmstead -Greenville12.Spring Hill -Massillon13.Putnam Historic District -Zanesville

PENNSYLVANIA 1.F. Julius LeMoyne House -Washington2.JohnBrown House -Chambersburg3.Bethel AME Zion Church -Reading 4.Oakdale -Chadds Ford5.White HorseFarm -Phoenixville6.Johnson House -Philadelphia

NEW YORK 1.Harriet Tubman Home for the Aged, Residence and ThompsonAME Zion Church -Auburn 2.St. James AME Zion Church -Ithaca 3.Gerrit Smith Estate and Land Office -Peterboro 4.John Brown Farm and Gravesite -Lake Placid 5.Foster Memorial AME Zion Church -Tarrytown6.Plymouth Church of the Pilgrims -Brooklyn7.Asa and Caroline Wing House -Oswego8.Edwin W. and Charlotte Clarke House -Oswego9.John P. and Lydia Edwards House -Oswego10.Orson Ames House -Oswego11.Starr Clock Tinshop -Mexico

VERMONT 1.Rokeby -Ferrisburgh

MAINE 1.Harriet Beecher Stowe House -Brunswick2.Abyssinian Meeting House -Portland

MASSACHUSETTS 1.African American National Historic Site -Boston 2.WilliamLloyd Garrison House -Boston 3.William Ingersoll Bowditch House -Brookline4.The Wayside -Concord5.Liberty Farm -Worcester6.Nathan and Mary Johnson House -New Bedford7.Jackson Homestead -Newton8.Ross Farm (Hill Ross Farm)Northampton9.Dorsey-Jones House- Northampton10.Mount Auburn Cemetary -Cambridge

CONNECTICUT 1.Austin F. Williams Carriagehouse and House -Farmington

NEW JERSEY 1.The Grimes Homestead -Mountain Lakes2.PeterMott House -Lawnside Borough3.Bethel AME Church -Greenwich4.Mount Zion African Methodist Episcopal Church and Mount ZionCemetery -Woolwich Township

DELAWARE 1.Appoquinimink Friends Meeting House -Odessa2.Friends Meeting House -Wilmington3.New Castle County Courthouse -New Castle

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA 1.Frederick Douglass National Historic Site 2.Mary Ann Shadd Cary House

MARYLAND 1.John Brown’s Headquarters -Sample’s Manor 2.Riley-Bolten House -North Bethesda

VIRGINIA 1.Bruin’s Slave Jail-Alexandria 2.Fort Monroe -Richmond3.Moncure Conway House -Falmouth4.Theodore Roosevelt Island- Rosslyn

WEST VIRGINIA1.Jefferson County Courthouse -Charles Town2.HarpersFerry National Historical Park -Harpers Ferry

FLORIDA 1.British Fort -Sumatra vicinity2.Ft.Mose Site -St. John’s County

COLORADO1.Barney L. Ford Building -Denver

NEBRASKA 1.Mayhew Cabin -Nebraska City

Kentucky 1.Camp Nelson -Jessamine County

Main Map |Home

Illinois’ Underground Railroad

During and after the American Civil War, slaves fleeing to freedom in the north began migrating into Illinois. Despite the fact that Illinois was a free state, it was far from a safe or hospitable environment for slaves of any kind. Because of the state’s Black Laws, African Americans were forbidden the most fundamental liberties (such as the right to congregate in groups, the right to vote, the right to bear weapons, and so on), and the Fugitive Slave Act forced people to return escaped slaves to their owners.

In order to avoid detection, slaves were had to move through Illinois in a covert manner, frequently at night.

Visitors may tour the residences (which have been preserved in their 19th-century architecture) and hear tales about this pivotal period in American history from Grafton to Galesburg to suburban Chicago, among other places.


Many of Illinois’ Underground Railroad properties were owned by abolitionists and were located near waterways, which made them ideal locations for fugitives. Princeton is home to several notable historic sites, the most notable of which is the Owen Lovejoy Homestead, which is a National Historic Landmark. In honor of the abolitionist preacher whose elder brother, Elijah, was murdered in 1837 by a pro-slavery mob in response to opinion columns he wrote in the newspaper, the street is named for him.

Lovejoy relocated to Princeton and became an outspoken advocate for the abolition of slavery, assisting blacks in hiding in his home. Tours of his 1850s home reveal the secret passageways that lead to the tight, tucked away spaces.


On this side of the Mississippi River, Dr. Richard Eell’sHouse in downtown Quincy was the initial stop for many hundred slaves arriving from the south. Concealed in this two-story early-1800s mansion were slaves who crossed the border from Missouri to escape their captors.


On Saturdays and Sundays, a nine-stop tour of Underground Railroad locales throughout town takes place, taking visitors to places including Beecher Hall and Woodlawn Farm, where hundreds of slaves hid. The trip is free.


These in-depth excursions are available in this Underground Railroad village near the Mississippi River. Since 1995, Underground Railroad specialist J.E. Robinson has conducted walking or driving tours in this region by appointment, sharing human tales to help tourists appreciate the conditions slaves were forced to live in and the dread they felt when they were apprehended. Trip participants will visit the Enos Apartments, where subterranean passageways that mimic Roman tombs may be found 15 feet below 3rdStreet, as part of the Alton Underground Railroad tour.

Some trips take visitors to the Cheney Mansion in Jerseyville, which has a subterranean cellar that operated as a “station” during World War II.

Louis to Canada in 1853, stopping in Illinois along the route.


At the residence of Dr. Hiram Rutherford, a close friend of Abraham Lincoln, the town of Oakland in eastern Illinois served as a shelter for slaves. When the famous Matson Slave Trial took place in 1847, Rutherford was a participant, and it was a contentious dispute over whether slaves residing in the region were free or not. Slavery was abolished through the court system, and a black population ultimately developed in the region.

Suburban Chicago

Many of the slaves who managed to make it to northern Illinois stopped at hundreds of Underground Railroad locations in Chicago’s western suburbs on their way north. Blanchard Hall, on the campus of Wheaton College, held slaves in subterranean passageways. Although the tunnels are no longer in existence, the institution maintains a permanent display about them on the first floor of the building. Graue Mill and Museumin Oak Brook, a property listed on the National Register of Historic Places, offers a variety of other attractions.

Both black and white abolitionists would deliver food to the slaves who were housed in this building.

TheSheldon Peck Homestead is open for visits on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, courtesy of theLombard Historical Society.

By allowing slaves to remain on his land, he put himself at danger of penalties and incarceration.

It is the National Park Service’s intention to continue working to conserve some of these Underground Railroad locations throughout Illinois, as well as to strengthen their educational initiatives.

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Canton Historic Depot

The Canton Historic Depot, which is located near the intersection of East Elm Street and Fourth Avenue, serves as a reminder of the progression of transportation in Canton over time. In the heart of the building is a foyer that leads to the original ticket window and counter. Meetings of the Canton City Council are held in a meeting room with a horseshoe seating configuration on the left side of the building. To the right of the entrance is an open gathering place for parties, showers, receptions, and other gatherings.

History of the Depot

The Canton Historic Depot, which was built in 1914 for the Chicago, Burlington, and Quincy Railroad, was restored to its former condition in the year 2000 after being damaged by fire. The building’s original woodwork, tile flooring, windows, luggage room, and brick roadway are still in place, as is its original brick street.

How to Rent the Depot

The Mayor’s Office in Canton may be reached at (309) 647-0065 for information about renting the depot. The facility has a capacity of 49 persons. Tables and chairs: A total of 40 persons can be accommodated. Renting for a shower or reception is $75 per hour, with charges varying depending on the type of use and the renter’s location or reason for renting. General Regulations: Alcohol and cigarette products are not permitted on the grounds, according to the general rules.

The Ohio Underground

The city of Canton, Ohio, embraces The Disappearing Person. This letter was addressed to Thomas Rotch by George Duncan, a slave whom Rotch had assisted in his emancipation. To find out what the letter says, click to this link. There’s something about the state of Ohio. The National Underground Railroad Freedom Center is located in Cincinnati, Ohio, and it was there that I first learned about Henry “Box” Brown and his miraculous emancipation from slavery. Now, the city of Canton, Ohio, has chosen my novel The Disappearing Man, which is about Henry Brown, as its selection for the One Book, One Community Program for 2011.

According to a 1996 article in the Ohio State Parks Magazine, “The Underground Railroad in Ohio was an extremely effective and highly planned organization.” Approximately three thousand miles of roads crisscrossed the state, with the majority of them pointing northeastward, and at least 23 ports of entry were built along the Ohio River, according to the report.

Apparently, after failing to apprehend his fugitive slave on the opposite side of the river, the owner claimed that Tice had “joined the underground railroad.” As a result of her escapes over the Ohio River, Harriet Beecher Stowe was inspired to write Uncle Tom’s Cabin, an anti-slavery novel that became the second most widely read book in the United States, behind the Bible, throughout the nineteenth century.

  1. Stowe resided in Cincinnati from 1830 until 1850, making him another another abolitionist with a link to the state of Ohio.
  2. Spring Hill, the home of Quakers Thomas and Charity Rotch, is one of these communities.
  3. However, there was one near call when a slave catcher called DeCamp visited up and demanded that an escaped mother and her children be given over.
  4. Ohio State Parks Magazine reports that “for the safety of those concerned, very few records were kept of the numbers and names of persons who gained freedom along the railroad,” but that it is estimated that at least 40,000 people travelled through the state of Ohio.

So hats off to the state of Ohio. Doug Peterson is an American businessman and philanthropist. Purchase “The Disappearing Man”

Canton, Bradford County, Pennsylvania – The Underground Railroad, Canton.

Bradford County, Pennsylvania is home to the Underground Railroad.

THE UNDERGROUND RAILROADAn interesting but little known chapter in Canton’s history relatesthe story of the “Underground Railroad” which passed through the town andcarried escaping slaves from the South to a safe haven in Canada and thefree states of the North. As this was neither a railroad nor underground,a word of explanation as to how the name was acquired might be enlightening.In 1831 a slave named Tice Davids ran away from his owner in Kentuckyand headed north. His master gathered a posse and started in pursuit. Thewould-be captors were drawing near by the time the fugitive reached theOhio River, so he had to jump in and swim across. The pursuers searcheduntil they found a boat, but by the time they reached the other side, theslavehad disappeared, leaving no trace.After a fruitless search, the master went to Ripley, a nearby town,and asked what became of the slave, he replied: “That nigger must havegone on an underground road, for no one has seen him pass on any road aboveground.”The story was repeated many times, and it is said the route of the slaveswas thereafter called the “Underground road”, which later was changed tothe “Underground Railroad.”So much secrecy surrounded the operation of the “underground”, necessitatedby the illegal aspects involved in helping a man’s property disappear thatit is almost impossible to find much authentic information on the subject.We do know one center of the “underground” was in Columbia, PA., wheremany Negroes had previously settled. William Wright, grandson of the founderof Columbia was active in assisting runaway slaves and established stationsat places easy for them to reach. Many times when the slaves were pursuedtoo closely to reach the next haven provided for them, Wright himself wouldconceal and disguise them to foil their enraged masters.
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Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, was a significant stop on the road northward to freedom. Several years ago, during the excavation for the Dauphin County Court House, a cave was discovered beneath the location of the mansion of Dr. William Rutherford, a major Abolitionist of the pre-Civil War era who lived in the vicinity. This cave served as a safe haven for hundreds of fleeing slaves on their journey to freedom. The slaves resumed their journey north from Harrisburg by a variety of different routes.

  1. Another slave ship followed the Susquehanna to Williamsport, with the slaves being hidden in the loads of canal boats on the way.
  2. Updegraf’s barn in Black Horse Alley, Williamsport, then to the Hughes residence, then to Trout Run, Wellsboro, and finally to Elmira, where they were sold.
  3. Williamsport’s first “underground” agents, David and Philip Roderick, were among the city’s first.
  4. Hughes and his wife provided safe haven for a large number of runaway slaves and assisted them on their journey north.

Originally, this road or trail ran north from Fort Agusta (Sunbury) to Muncy, past the Wolfe Run House of William Ellis, on to Abraham Webster’s near Huntersville, across the mountain at Highland Lake, down Ogdonia Creek to the Loyalsock, up thatstream to Elk Creek, up Elk Creek to Lincoln Falls, then to Estella and Eldredsville; over Burnetts ridge to the Schrader Branch, thence down thatstream to Towanda The Wolfe Run House, which was described before, is still intact, and it was here that the Negroes would occasionally hide in the fireplace.

  • A large number of those who were interested in assisting the slaves were Quakers, and many of the old Quaker households in Sullivan County, Pennsylvania, contributed to this effort as well.
  • A station was maintained on the family farm near Estella by L.
  • Tompkins, King’s grandpa, and Mr.
  • He was eating pancakes and syrup at the time, and his enjoyment in the syrup left an unforgettable imprint on her impressionable mind as a child.
  • Samuel and Reuben Battin, two brothers who lived on the “middle road” between Shunk and Wheelerville and were active agents for the Shunk station, were killed in a shootout with the police.
  • Each of the three departed one night in the spring, apparently being taken to the next “station.” Station No.
  • Miss Elizabeth Bunyan, a retired school teacher who still lives in Canton, recalls how her father’s team was hitched to a wagon that was ostensibly loaded with hay and under which the slaves huddled as they were transported to the next station.

Saxton provided a refuge but did little to facilitate transportation, as Miss Elizabeth Bunyan recalls.

Between 1846 and 1854, this station saw a great deal of activity.

James Parsons, a circuit riding Baptist pastor who had returned from New York State in 1846, was chosen to manage the station since there were no Quakers in the region of Canton.

After the death of the Rev.

Parsons, who had aided his father in bringing the slaves to their next destination, took up the responsibility of continuing the task.

A chamber was made ready for the fugitives at this location.

According to the Parsons’ family’s annals, the Negroes were peaceful and well-behaved, and they were extremely appreciative of any kindness offered to them.

From around 1840 to 1860, the “underground” worked in this area for a total of about 20 years, roughly spanning the years 1840 to 1860.

The men who vowed to assist escape slaves did so at enormous personal danger to themselves and their property, especially after the Supreme Court’s judgment in the Dred Scott case was overturned.

Because the stations were situated at intervals that a horse or team might traverse between nightfall and daybreak, this was always a perilous, night-long expedition.

Keagle: I conducted extensive research to get the facts for this article some years ago, and all of the names listed are those of genuine persons who were involved in the “underground” activities in this section of Pennsylvania.

Many of them were Quakers or members of other religious organizations who were opposed to slavery and concerned about its development into northern states.

James Parsons, and his son, Horatio B.

Eleanor P.

Keagle (1896-1971) Canton has a large population of African-Americans.

Black people have built their homes in the Canton region since the Civil War, although only a limited number have done so recently.

Leon Keagle provide information about some of the first black individuals to settle in Canton.

He hired her as his army cook and then shipped her north to his family, where she stayed for a number of years.

The house was at the back of Gus Krisehome, across the stream on East Union street, and it was occupied at the time.

He roasted them on a little grill until they were soft and hot, then rolled them into cones.

Baptized at the same time were Mrs.


Parsons (of white).

Boney Peterson’s wife, Johnny Robinson’s sister, and Johnny Robinson’s wife, Susan, all resided at the house where Julien Reed currently resides.

Susan Robinson passed away about the year 1867.

During the twentieth century, there were a few black individuals who resided in Canton, and the Independent-Sentinel published an article on George Lyle’s heroism in their Anniversary Issue in 1950.

A lot of people will identify George Lyle, the guy seated in the driver’s seat in this photograph, because he was a common face on the streets of Canton at the time.


George Lyle was a simple-hearted man, although he had a large number of friends.

They followed the old sprinkler wagon on hot summer days when he cruised the streets to “laid the dust,” despite the fact that they were barefoot.

During the winter, they “hitch” rides on these bonsai sleds.

During the early morning hours of April 27, 1920, a horse pulling a small cart on Union street became alarmed and began to flee.

In the coal yard, Mr.

It happened when he was yanked off his feet and flung to the ground, and one of the wheels went over him, breaking his leg severely.

The child was unharmed, but George was sent to the hospital and remained there for several months.

The gallant deed earned him the Carnegie Hero’s Medal, which came with a monthly payment of $26.00 as a reward for his bravery.

In addition to the Swan and Roberts families, there were several other black families who lived in Canton during the first half of the twentieth century, including the North family, who raised Mary and John Hackett, and the Bright family, who lived on a farm in the vicinity of Canton and was raised by the North family.

The Lewis Building was his place of employment, and he lived in the house on West Union Street that was the final house on the right.

The first bicycle I ever owned was purchased by my parents from him, and I vividly recall traveling to the first floor of the Lewis Building to collect it.

While I don’t recall how I brought the bicycle home, it was my first ride that I do recall clearly.

But because of my inexperience, I was unable to round the corner sharply enough to proceed up the sidewalk, and I ended up running into a tree that happened to be right in front of me.

Black families that have resided in the Canton region have experienced no racial tensions, in part because they were few in number, but also because they were all model citizens who were well-liked and respected by their neighbors and the rest of the town.

Most individuals were more concerned with the sort of person they were than than the color of their skin.

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