Book on Underground Railroad in Ohio
Runaway slave John Price
Courtesy of the Oberlin College Archives
The Oberlin College Archives is pleased to announce the publication of The 1858 Oberlin-Wellington Rescue: A Reappraisal by Roland M. Baumann and Foreword by Frederick J. Blue.
The snatching away of the fugitive slave John Price from the hands of Kentucky slave catchers in Wellington, Ohio, on 13 September 1858, and subsequent trial of the 37 rescuers in 1859, represents one of the more celebrated stories in the history of Lorain County, Ohio. Most of the rescuers who secured Price's release and his escape to Canada epitomized a commitment to religious obligation, equal educational opportunity, and political pacifism. Oberlin's residents embraced a form of racial harmony during the 1840s and 1850s that resulted in a "golden era" of race relations. In Oberlin the Underground Railroad was real and important, concludes the author.
Roland M. Baumann attempts to evaluate the motives of the rescuers from their actions, their public utterances, and their personal writings. Following up on Nat Brandt and Aimee and William Cheek, Baumann emphasizes the significant role played by black Americans who participated in the rescue of fugitive Price. This book, illustrated with original photographs and two author-created historical documents, features the first likeness of John Price on its cover. The new interpretative perspective of this Underground Railroad story should add to our understanding of Oberlin at mid nineteenth-century and of the events preceding the Civil War.
ROLAND M. BAUMANN, Emeritus Archivist and Professor of History at Oberlin College, is a Fellow of the Society of American Archivists and a Founding Member of the Academy of Certified Archivists.
They Stopped In Oberlin, 2002 reprint
The Oberlin College Archives is pleased to announce a 2002 reprint of They Stopped In Oberlin:Black Residents and Visitors of the Nineteenth Century by William E. Bigglestone.
Published in 1981, They Stopped in Oberlin has been long out-of-print. In response to the many requests for a copy, the Oberlin College Archives produced this second printing. Copies can now find their way into the hands of new generations of genealogists and local historians.
This important reference tool contains 300 biographical sketches of "African-Americans who were born and reared during the era of slavery and who, for greater or lesser periods, made Oberlin and its surrounding area their home between 1840 and 1900." According to Oberlin College Archivist Roland M. Baumann, William E. Bigglestone is the first historian "to focus primarily on the town's black population and to indicate why so many were drawn to the area [Lorain County] either for protracted visits or to remain and become full-time residents" (Foreword). Important information on African-Americans who attended Oberlin College (called the "Collegiate Institute" before 1850) and the town's racially integrated public schools will also be found here.
Numbering 252 pages, the reprint edition includes a "Foreword" by Roland M. Baumann, an introduction by William E. Bigglestone, eight illustrations, and an index.