Wednesday, May 24th 2017
6:00 PM - 7:30 PM
In Southeastern PA there are many places that are believed to have been associated with the Underground Railroad. And yet, there are relatively few properties in our region that have been well-documented as part of this chapter in our history and which are protected in some way from neglect, deterioration, or loss through willful demolition. This chapter in our history — spanning a period from about 1780 through 1860 — has always been shrouded in myth and legend. So many of the details of this early civil rights movement were kept secret or lost over time because involvement was mostly illegal and punishable by fines, property confiscation or imprisonment. In more recent years, many of these older buildings — those known “stations” or safe houses, and many still undiscovered — have deteriorated to the point that they fail victim to neglect and willful demolition. Further complicating the problem, it is rare in Pennsylvania for local municipalities to have local laws on their books to protect these historic places.
Lancaster historian, heritage tourism planner and tour guide Randolph Harris will present stories, photos, maps and other illustrations from his forty years of researching and documenting historic properties. For the most recent 15 of those years he has specifically focused his consulting and volunteer efforts on sites connected to the Underground Railroad across Pennsylvania.
Mr. Harris will explain how you can become involved in this exciting and challenging work in your own communities.
Questions about the program? Please contact us by email or by calling (717) 394-2651 x128.