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Jackson in Jackson County, Michigan — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
 

The First Congregational Church

Experience Jackson

— The Jackson Underground Railroad Tour —

 
 
The First Congregational Church Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Craig Doda, September 26, 2022
1. The First Congregational Church Marker
Inscription.  
An Emboldened Community For Civil Rights
Starting in the 1840s, the First Congregational Church played an active role in social reforms, civil rights and the anti-slavery movement. This is the setting where the congregation tried to do what was right-working below the radar and breaking the law to help runaway slaves-all while dealing with the conflicting views of pro-slavery community members.

Passionate sermons from Reverend William Sullivan and Reverend Gustavis Foster were famous for their biblical arguments against slavery. They stirred the souls of the congregation and the message rippled throughout the state of Michigan.

Jackson - Hub of the Underground Railroad
During the decades leading up to the American Civil War, Jackson, Michigan was both hub and haven for thousands of slaves escaping through a human network called the Underground Railroad. The ultimate destination (usually Canada) for slaves on the route varied by slave and guide, but it was always considered "the land of freedom and was sought by slaves one night, one mile, and one act of kindness at a time.

Several
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community leaders and families in Jackson secretly housed, clothed, fed and reassured runaways. while others supportive of the business of slavery openly hunted and punished escaped slaves or anyone aiding their fight. Some northerners went so far as to capture the runaways and return them to servitude. Not every slave on the Underground Railroad escaped.
 
Erected by City of Jackson, Michigan. (Marker Number 2.)
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Abolition & Underground RRChurches & Religion.
 
Location. 42° 14.867′ N, 84° 24.545′ W. Marker is in Jackson, Michigan, in Jackson County. Marker is at the intersection of North Jackson Street and West Michigan Avenue, on the left when traveling north on North Jackson Street. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 120 N Jackson St, Jackson MI 49201, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The St. Joseph Indian Trail (a few steps from this marker); Edward Pomeroy Post No. 48 Grand Army Of The Republic (a few steps from this marker); a different marker also named First Congregational Church (a few steps from this marker); Abolitionists in Jackson (within shouting distance of this marker); Horace Ismon / Ismon Building
The First Congregational Church Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Craig Doda, September 26, 2022
2. The First Congregational Church Marker
(within shouting distance of this marker); Jacksonburg Public Square (within shouting distance of this marker); Bucky Harris Park (within shouting distance of this marker); This alley is named for Emma Nichols (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Jackson.
 
The First Congregational Church image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Craig Doda, September 26, 2022
3. The First Congregational Church
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on September 29, 2022. It was originally submitted on September 29, 2022, by Craig Doda of Napoleon, Ohio. This page has been viewed 126 times since then and 32 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on September 29, 2022, by Craig Doda of Napoleon, Ohio. • Devry Becker Jones was the editor who published this page.

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Jun. 15, 2024