Urbana in Champaign County, Ohio — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
The Underground Railroad in Champaign County / Lewis Adams
The Underground Railroad
in Champaign County
The inhumanity of slavery and the Fugitive Slave Acts of 1793 and 1850 motivated anti-slavery activists to operate a covert network, the "Underground Railroad," which helped fugitive slaves escape captivity. From early 1800s to the end of the Civil War, local activists assisted runaway slaves on their journeys north to freedom. Guides ("conductors") used their homes, farms, and churches ("stations") to hide and shelter runaway slaves ("cargo.") If captured, fugitives were severly punished and re-enslaved; "conductors" faced large fines and imprisonment, and Free Persons of Color risked being sold into slavery. A route often - traveled was once a path used by migrating buffalo, which became an Indian trail called the Bullskin Trace. It ran north from the Ohio River to Lake Erie and later became U.S. Route 68.
Lewis Adams (1785 - 1864), a free Black man and a founding member of St. Paul African Methodist Episcopal (A.M.E.) Church, was an Underground Railroad conductor in Champaign County from approximately 1825 to 1861. Adams, his sons, and his father-in-law, Francis Reno, guided many runaways through the county. Adams sheltered fugitives at his home in Urbana and later his farm in Concord Township (Muddy Creek). In 1848
Erected 2013 by Friends and Descendants of Lewis and Susan Adams / The Ohio Historical Society. (Marker Number 32-11.)
Marker series. This marker is included in the Ohio Historical Society / The Ohio History Connection marker series.
Location. 40° 5.506′ N, 83° 45.356′ W. Marker is in Urbana, Ohio, in Champaign County. Marker is at the intersection of U.S. 68 and Lewis B Moore Drive (County Route 55), on the left when traveling north on U.S. 68. Touch for map. The marker is located in Freedom Grove Park with parking at N40 05.486 W83 45.415. Marker is in this post office area: Urbana OH 43078, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Xue, Bian, and Sun Memorial (approx. 0.7 miles away); Bailey and Barclay Halls / Johnny Appleseed John Anderson Ward Farmstead / John Quincy Adams Ward & Edgar Melville Ward (approx. 0.8 miles away); Billy "Single" Clifford /Clifford Theater (approx. one mile away); Dayton, Springfield, and Urbana Electric Railway (approx. 1.1 miles away); Champaign County Civil War Memorial (approx. 1.1 miles away); Mad River and Lake Erie Railroad (approx. 1.2 miles away); Simon Kenton (approx. 1.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Urbana.
Categories. • Abolition & Underground RR • African Americans •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on October 20, 2014, by Douglas McLeod of LaSalle, Ontario, Canada. This page has been viewed 377 times since then and 46 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on October 20, 2014, by Douglas McLeod of LaSalle, Ontario, Canada. • Al Wolf was the editor who published this page.