Jerry's Favorite Stories | Ohio's history with the Underground Railroad (1998)


As many of you may know, I'm retiring from 10TV News this month. My last day on the air will be Tuesday at 6. I've enjoyed a great 45-year career with the Dispatch Broadcast Group. I've been blessed to travel the world pursuing stories.

I'll be sharing some of my favorites with you.

Back in the summer of 1998, I came across a fascinating piece of Ohio's black history: The underground railroad.

Some call the railroad America's first civil rights movement but it wasn't underground, nor actually a railroad. It was a network of safe houses scattered across the state - in the early 1800s - that helped escaped slaves run to freedom.

Ohio has roughly 3,000 miles of Underground Railroad routes.

Columbus has several documented underground railroad safe houses. Some slaves settled here.

Others afraid their former owners would send slave catchers up north to track them down traveled all the way to Lake Erie to get into Canada for freedom and safety.

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