Syracuse in Onondaga County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Wesleyan Methodist Church
The Freedom Trail
— The Underground Railroad —
The Wesleyan Methodist Church was a biracial abolitionist congregation and a major center of the Underground Railroad. Luther Lee, pastor (1843 and 1852-1855) and editor of the True Wesleyan (1844-1852), assisted as many as 365 freedom seekers a year. Church members Charles, Montgomery, and Chloe Merrick raised money and supplied passes on the railroad to freedom seekers. James Baker, a Georgia-born whitewasher, and Mary Baker, his Maryland-born wife, were freedom seekers themselves. The Bakers and some other fugitives residing in Syracuse worried that the 1851 arrest of William "Jerry" Henry might lead to more arrests. They fled to Canada soon thereafter.
The church hosted a prayer service for John Brown when he was hung on December 2, 1859. It also hosted a gathering of Syracuse black citizens on January 20, 1863, to celebrate Lincoln's issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation.
Wesleyan Church members
Erected by Preservation Association of Central New York, City of Syracuse, and Onondaga Historical Association. (Marker Number 4.)
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Abolition & Underground RR • African Americans • Churches & Religion • Civil Rights.
Location. 43° 2.826′ N, 76° 8.904′ W. Marker is in Syracuse, New York, in Onondaga County. Marker is at the intersection of East Jefferson Street and East Onondaga Street, on the left when traveling east on East Jefferson Street. Marker is located along the sidewalk, directly in front of the former Wesleyan Methodist Church building. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 304 East Onondaga Street, Syracuse NY 13202, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Great Central Depot (here, next to this marker); Fayette Park (approx. 0.2 miles away); University Club (approx. 0.2 miles away); James K. McGuire (approx. 0.2 miles away); Syracuse Grade Crossing Elimination (approx. 0.2 miles away); Courier Building Daniel Webster's "Syracuse Speech" (approx. 0.2 miles away); Double Enders (approx. ¼ mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Syracuse.
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. Syracuse Freedom Trail & Underground Railroad
Credits. This page was last revised on September 5, 2019. It was originally submitted on September 3, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 69 times since then and 41 times this year. Photos: 1. submitted on September 3, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7. submitted on September 5, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.