Sandusky in Erie County, Ohio — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
The Underground Railroad / Abolition Boats Provide an Escape to Freedom in Erie County
The Underground Railroad was neither underground nor a railroad, but a system of loosely connected safe havens where those escaping the brutal conditions of slavery were sheltered, fed, clothed, nursed, concealed, disguised, and instructed during their journey to freedom. Although this movement was one of America's greatest social, moral, and humanitarian endeavors, the details about it were often cloaked in secrecy to protect those involved from retribution of civil law and slave-catchers. Ohio’s history has been permanently shaped by the thousands of runaway slaves passing through or finding permanent residence in this state
The promimity of the mouth of the Sandusky Bay to the Lake Erie Islands leading north to Canada was crucial in safely transporting runaway slaves to freedom. Several types of vessels to as “abolition boats”. The fearless men who captained these crafts had to be skilled in navigating the treacherous waterways that poured into the western basin of Lake Erie. Runaways could earn passage to Canada by working in or around the shipyards that lined the mile-long
The abolition boats included: Walk-in-the-water, Superior, The Arrow, United States, Bay City, Mayflower, May Queen, Morning Star, and others. The captains included: Captain Shepherd, Captain Swiegel, Captain Thomas McGee (owner of the Steamboat Hotel), and others.
Erected by ODOT and Friends of Freedom Society.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: African Americans.
Location. 41° 27.564′ N, 82° 42.489′ W. Marker is in Sandusky, Ohio, in Erie County. Marker is on East Shoreline Drive, on the left when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 411 East Shoreline Drive, Sandusky OH 44870, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Shoreline Park (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Donahue Hardware (approx. ¼ mile away); Jay Cooke (approx. ¼ mile away); State Theatre (approx. ¼ mile away); Hubbard Building (approx. 0.3 miles away); Sandusky Aviation, Shipyard & Railroad (approx. 0.3 miles away); G.A. Boeckling Building (approx. 0.3 miles away); Kilbourne Plat (approx. 0.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Sandusky.
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on November 23, 2014, by Denise Boose of Tehachapi, California. This page has been viewed 617 times since then and 36 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on November 23, 2014, by Denise Boose of Tehachapi, California. • Al Wolf was the editor who published this page.