In the mid 1830s, countless numbers of slaves passed through Illinois to escaped slavery through the underground railroad.
Sunday, the Peoria Riverfront Museum hosted an hour long lecture as a part of their Illinois Lecture Series on the Underground Railroad, specifically through Central Illinois.
Owen Muelder is the Knox College Underground Railroad Historian. He says, “We’re only about 100 miles from the slave state of Missouri for instance, so the movement of fugitive slaves was active in this area because slaves knew they could pass through the free state of Illinois.” “Perhaps the greatest flaw when our Country was created, was that the United States of America held up this model of democracy and freedom to the world, but at the same time allowed slavery to exist in southern states.”
Peoria Riverfront Museum’s next event in the lecture series will be a panel discussion on the history of labor in Illinois on Sunday, May 6th.