Tag Archives: Underground Railroad

Virginia’s waterways were paths to freedom for escaped slaves

South-central Pennsylvania, including York and Adams counties, were often the first place that escaped slaves from Maryland and Virginia headed in their quest for freedom. Several books, including those by Cooper Wingert and David G. Smith, cover the topic across … Continue reading

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Hanover’s “peculiar man:” Big Bill Otter

In 1885, a McSherrystown, PA, newspaper editor deemed William Arter (as he misspelled Otter) as “a peculiar man” who did “some very foolish things.” Otter, who lived in nearby Hanover from 1809 until 1821, was certainly one of the most … Continue reading

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Save Hybla. Period.

“Captain Tanner,” an orderly dispatched from General Gordon called down from his lathered mount, “Compliments of the General. He wishes for you to send the left section of your battery over to yonder hill and deploy. See the stone house … Continue reading

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Battle to save Underground Railroad Station marks 154th anniversary of Rebel invasion of York County

Today marks the 154th anniversary of the beginning of the Confederate invasion of York County, Pennsylvania. Lieutenant Colonel Elijah V. White’s 35th Battalion, Virginia Cavalry, entered Hanover, where a delegation of city fathers had assembled to meet the oncoming Rebels. … Continue reading

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York’s Underground Railroad Heroes: Joseph Wickersham

In the early 1800s, York County, Pennsylvania, played an important role in the growing movement to abolish slavery. Many people in southern York County were ambivalent to slavery or tolerated it; others actively supported the trade by hiring slaves from … Continue reading

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York’s Underground Railroad Heroes: Joseph Garretson

Jim McClure and I will be co-presenting a talk on the Underground Railroad in York County, Pennsylvania, at the February 15 monthly meeting of the York Civil War Round Table (250 E. Market Street, York; free admission and parking). I … Continue reading

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Save the Mifflin House: why we all should care.

A few months ago, I was among a small group of fellow history buffs who were invited on a personal tour of the historic Mifflin House, known to its Quaker founders as “Hybla,” just outside of Wrightsville, Pennsylvania. A generation … Continue reading

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York CWRT Feb. 15: Jim McClure & Scott Mingus discuss the Underground Railroad

On February 15, 2017, please join the York Civil War Roundtable in its 20th Anniversary Year, welcoming authors Scott Mingus and James McClure to our meeting for their combined presentation on the  Underground Railroad in York County, Pennsylvania. The monthly … Continue reading

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York’s Underground Railroad Heroes: William Yocum

Old West gunslingers, marshals, sheriffs, and cowboys have always fascinated me. As a lad, I read as many books as I could on the topic. Names such as Bat Masterson, Wild “Bill” Hickok, Calamity Jane, Billy the Kid, and Jesse … Continue reading

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York’s Underground Railroad Heroes: Henry W. Grant

Henry W. Grant was born to slave parents in Cecil County, Maryland, and grew up on his master’s plantation. When he turned 19, he received his freedom  when his owner died.  Grant soon moved to Pennsylvania, where he eventually married … Continue reading

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