How City of Detroit played a significant role in fight to protect those who were still enslaved
Juneteenth commemorates the announcement of emancipation of enslaved people in Texas on June 19, 1865.This happened more than two years after President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation on Jan. 1, 1863.
‘Freedom in rural Michigan’: Washtenaw County hosts Underground Railroad historian
WASHTENAW COUNTY, MI - A scholar of the Underground Railroad in Michigan is bringing Washtenaw County residents the story of the connection between two historic properties and the fight against slavery close to 200 years ago. Mull will lead a Black History Month presentation at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 24, via Zoom hosted by the Washtenaw County Parks and Recreation Commission. The talk, titled “Freedom in Rural Michigan: Sharon Hollow and Watkins Farm,” will highlight two county-affiliated sites and the early Michigan pioneers that played a role aiding freedom-seeking people fleeing southern states. The Watkins Lake State Park and County Preserve, split between Jackson County and Manchester Township in Washtenaw County, also has ties to the the pre-Civil War era of resistance to slavery. Read more: Escaped slave’s Ann Arbor grave and nearby farm recognized as part of Underground RailroadMull, a founding member and past chair of the Michigan Freedom Trail Commission, is the author of “The Underground Railroad in Michigan,” an account of abolitionists and the freedom struggle in mid-nineteenth-century Michigan.mlive.com
Saginaw County forms specialized domestic violence court
SAGINAW, MI — Saginaw County is starting a new specialized court, one focusing on domestic violence cases. “Recent statistic show women in Saginaw County experienced intimate partner abuse nearly twice the state average.”In 2018, women in Saginaw County experienced domestic violence at nearly double the rate of the state average — 8.05 to 4.82 per 1,000. “Every day I see the effects domestic violence has on defendants’ intimate partners, children and the community,” Frank said. Currently, domestic violence cases are spread among the county’s district court judges. The domestic violence court joins several other specialized dockets in Saginaw County, including drug, sobriety, veterans, business, and mental health courts.mlive.com
$10K grant will help provide historical markers in Jackson County
JACKSON COUNTY, MI - A $10,000 grant will help the Jackson County Historical Society place markers at some of the county’s historical buildings and sites. The bulk of it is being spent on the society’s historical marker program to educate the public about significant people, places and events in Jackson County’s history, said President Maurice Imhoff. The historical society intends to mark several sites it has been researching within Jackson County, officials said. Once the marker application process is fine-tuned, the historical society intends to open the program to interested Jackson County residents, officials said. For more information on events and the historical marker program, visit the society’s Facebook page and its website.mlive.com
Film documents popular 1920s Black resort in Michigan, near where Underground Railroad once ran
CASS COUNTY, MI — More than 1,500 freedom seekers are said to have used Vandalia’s network of safe houses in the mid-1800s along their journey on the Underground Railroad. It was a place “where Black families escaped, unwound and enjoyed one another’s company in a peaceful environment,” said Cathy LaPointe, of the Underground Railroad Society of Cass County. It was one of the more popular spots along the Underground Railroad, Connor said. Cass County filmmaker Sally Jo Connor’s new documentary “Paradise” tells the story of a once popular Black resort near the Village of Vandalia. Presented by the Underground Railroad Society of Cass County and Michigan Humanities Council, the showing is free to the public, she said, but donations are appreciated.mlive.com
Connecting kids to their food is the goal of Willow Run Acres farm
That’s why he launched Willow Run Acres farm, an educational farming organization that recently opened its latest location in partnership with Vestergaard Farms. The newest location of Willow Run Acres, which celebrated a grand opening June 19 on S. Wagner Road in Ann Arbor, is an educational farm focused on teaching kids how to connect with nature and the origin of their food. Collins, who runs the farm and is a former professional chef, started Willow Run Acres after growing potatoes with his daughter for a class project years ago. Educating students about the origin of their food is also important to Michael Vestergaard, who owns the property used by Willow Run Acres. “TC is much more than growing produce,” Vestergaard said.mlive.com
Ypsilanti declares Juneteenth a city holiday
YPSILANTI, MI -- Ypsilanti has made Juneteenth an official city holiday. The Ypsilanti City Council approved a resolution recently to recognize the holiday each year on June 19. City officials pointed out that Ypsilanti has a record of fighting bigotry, slavery and racism. The city sent soldiers, Black and white, to fight and die for the Union in the Civil War to free the slaves. Ypsilanti City Mayor Lois Richardson proposed the resolution after virtually attending the National League of Cities and learning that other cities were creating a Juneteenth holiday, she said.mlive.com
Domestic violence survivor, ‘in silence for years,’ shares her story
“When you’re in domestic violence, you feel like you’re the only one going through this,” she said. Castell-Morris is a domestic violence survivor and wants to help other women in the community speak out about it. Guest speakers will include survivors of domestic violence and mothers who have lost daughters to domestic violence. “I was in silence for years, never shared anything about domestic violence, and that’s how I believe that I was stuck,” Castell-Morris said. Castell-Morris is a domestic violence survivor and wants to help other women in the community speak out about it.mlive.com
‘History 4 All’: Celebrating Black History Month
WDIV-Local 4, in keeping with the station’s initiative of “Celebrating Black History” throughout February, aired a primetime special called “History 4 All” on Wednesday, Feb. 24. You can watch the full special in the video above. From what should be taught in our schools’ history classes to why we still need Black History Month, Local 4′s anchors and reporters highlight topics impacting on our local communities and beyond. “Our hope is that these in-depth stories will spark conversations about how we all benefit from a diverse community like we have here in Metro Detroit,” said Vice President and General Manager Marla Drutz. This hour-long special was hosted by Devin Scillian and Kimberly Gill, and featured stories from them, as well as Rhonda Walker, Evrod Cassimy, Paula Tutman, Steve Garagiola, Larry Spruill, Victor Williams and Jamie Edmonds.
How Detroit played a role in the Underground Railroad
DETROIT – The Underground Railroad -- dangerous path to freedom for slaves -- ran through Metro Detroit before heading into Canada. Here’s a look at some Detroiters who played big roles in the Underground Railroad and the historic sites in the city, as well as across the Detroit River in Canada, that you may not have ever noticed. READ: Work underway to restore Underground Railroad safe house in Walled LakeWatch the full report in the video above to learn more.
Tonight: Local 4′s ‘History 4 All’ special will spark family conversations
WDIV-Local 4, in keeping with the station’s initiative of “Celebrating Black History” throughout February, will air a primetime special called “History 4 All” on Wednesday, February 24 at 8 p.m.Watch it on Local 4 and ClickOnDetroit -- it will stream here:From what should be taught in our schools’ history classes to why we still need Black History Month, Local 4′s anchors and reporters highlight topics impacting on our local communities and beyond. “Our hope is that these in-depth stories will spark conversations about how we all benefit from a diverse community like we have here in Metro Detroit,” said Vice President and General Manager Marla Drutz. This hour-long special is hosted by Devin Scillian and Kimberly Gill, and features stories from them, as well as Rhonda Walker, Evrod Cassimy, Paula Tutman, Steve Garagiola, Larry Spruill, Victor Williams and Jamie Edmonds. Stories include:AdChanges in the corporate world in response to 2020′s civil unrestLesser known Underground Railroad sites in Metro DetroitDiversity in the front office of sport teams and why the Lions and Pistons are leading the wayMotown’s programs for young musicians and singersWDIV’s “History 4 All” special airs Wednesday, February 24 at 8 p.m. on Local 4.
Its role in the Underground Railroad could earn Jackson train station national historic recognition
JACKSON, MI -- Jackson’s historic train station has long been credited for its role in developing the city’s economy. Jackson historians want to add the nearly 150-year-old Amtrak station to the National Park Service’s National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom. The station was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2002, but James said an Underground Railroad designation would further highlight the building’s history as the oldest continuously operating train station in the country. If the designation is approved, it’ll join two other historic Underground Railroad sites in the city. Evergreen Cemetery is where people involved in the Underground Railroad, including an escaped slave, are buried.mlive.com
Work underway to restore Underground Railroad safe house in Walled Lake
DETROIT – Community members are coming to together in Walled Lake to help restore this historic house. Watch this inspiring story above. If you’d like to help, contact Greenhouse of Walled Lake: email@example.com. More: Black History Month section
Underground Railroad in Detroit: Important people, sites you might not know
DETROIT – Have you ever learned about George DeBaptiste? How about William Lambert? Here’s a look at some Detroiters who played big roles in the Underground Railroad, and the historic sites in the city (and just across the Detroit River in Canada) that you may never have noticed. Watch the full story above to learn all about it. More: Black History Month section
Deer Widows Weekend at Frankenmuth River Place Shops raising funds for Underground Railroad
FRANKENMUTH, MI — “Deer widows” are invited to a special event at Frankenmuth River Place Shops this weekend to support both local businesses and Saginaw’s Underground Railroad while they shop. River Place Shops, 925 S. Main St., is collaborating with the nonprofit for its inaugural Deer Widows Weekend Fundraiser taking place Friday through Sunday, Nov. 13-15. Proceeds will go to the Underground Railroad to provide shelter and resources for women and children in need this holiday season, according to a River Place Shops news release. The Underground Railroad has provided emergency shelter and services to victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking and human trafficking in Saginaw County for more than 40 years. Jessica Haynes, marketing and events director at River Place Shops, added in a statement, “We know so many of our visitors to Frankenmuth look forward to their annual holiday shopping trip.mlive.com
The story of Monroe's Underground Railroad
There are documents in Ohio that mention routes in Monroe County during the days of slavery escape routes. The Underground Railroad was an organized system of escape routes that would take runaway slaves from the southern states up through the northern states and finally into Canada where they could live free and out of bondage. The Underground Railroad existed from at least the 1820s through about 1865 when the Civil War ended. There were prominent families in Sylvania who were very active in the Underground Railroad, in particular the Harroun and Lathrop families. The Boy Scouts in Lenawee County for many years had a hiking trail that followed an Underground Railroad route from Adrian to Tecumseh.monroenews.com
Story of the Underground Railroad to Mexico gains attention
In this Feb. 2, 2019, photo, provided by the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, is the Eli Jackson Methodist Church and cemetery in San Juan, Texas. It is located on a ranch once operated by Nathaniel and Matilda Jackson, a biracial couple believed to have been "conductors" of the Underground Railroad to Mexico. Across Texas and parts of Louisiana, Alabama, and Arkansas, scholars and preservation advocates are working to piece together a puzzle of a largely forgotten piece of American history: a network that helped thousands of Black slaves escape to Mexico. (David Pike/University of Texas Rio Grande Valley via AP)
Story of the Underground Railroad to Mexico gains attention
It is located on a ranch once operated by Nathaniel and Matilda Jackson, a biracial couple believed to have been "conductors" of the Underground Railroad to Mexico. The two families' ranches served as a stop on the Underground Railroad to Mexico, descendants said. But just how organized the Underground Railroad to Mexico was and what happened to former slaves and those who helped them remains a mystery. The examination of the Underground Railroad to Mexico comes as the U.S. is undergoing a racial reckoning around policing and systemic racism. Some Mexican American families are finding themselves having uncomfortable conversations about race in the wake of their newfound awareness of the Underground Railroad to Mexico.
Frederick Douglass statue vandalized in Rochester park
This photo provided by WROC-TV shows the remnants of a Frederick Douglass statue ripped from its base at a park in Rochester, N.Y., Sunday, July 5, 2020. The statue of abolitionist Douglass was ripped on the anniversary of one of his most famous speeches, delivered in that city in 1852. (Ben Densieski/WROC-TV via AP)ROCHESTER, N.Y. A statue of abolitionist Frederick Douglass was ripped from its base in Rochester on the anniversary of one of his most famous speeches, delivered in that city in 1852. Police said the statue of Douglass was taken on Sunday from Maplewood Park, a site along the Underground Railroad where Douglas and Harriet Tubman helped shuttle slaves to freedom. The statue was found at the brink of the Genesee River gorge about 50 feet from its pedestal, police said.
Detroits essential civil rights sites, mapped
When most Americans think of the modern civil rights movement, they think of the South. Housing and school segregation, as well as police brutality, were prevalent here for decades after African Americans migrated north. To get a better sense of the citys place in the civil rights movement, and learn more about important local sites, we spoke with historian Jamon Jordan of Black Scroll Toursa popular black history tour company based in Detroit. Its important for Detroiters and others to know this history because civil rights is connected to Detroit history, Jordan says. Jim Crow and segregation were national phenomena.Here are 10 Detroit sites that played an important part in the civil rights movement.detroit.curbed.com