Grand Central Station of Underground Railroads
Photo #1: Indiana Freedom Trail Description of Levi Coffin Home in Fountain City, Indiana. Plaque Reads: "Levi Coffin (1798-1877), a Quaker abolitionist, lived in Newport (now Fountain City) with his family 1826-1847. Moved from North Carolina because he & his wife, Catharine, opposed slavery. Advocated, and sold in his store, free-labor products not produced by slaves. House built circa 1839; designated a National Historic Landmark 1966.
Coffin's Reminiscences (1876) (journals) documented work in Underground Railroad & antislavery movement.
The Underground Railroad refers to a widespread network of diverse people in the nineteenth century who aided slaves escaping to freedom from the southern U.S."
Photo #2: Levi Coffin State Historic Site. (113 U.S. 27 N, Fountain City) This is the Coffin family home, an 8-room Federal style brick home in Fountain City, Indiana, that became a "safe haven" for escaped slaves on their journey to Canada.
Photo#3: The Barn behind the house.
(From Jill Martin)
Many of Wayne County's Quaker settlers traveled from North Carolina to a state free from the horrors of slavery. Abolitionists, Levi Coffin & his wife, Catharine, were North Carolina Quakers who came to Fountain City (then called Newport) in 1826 as part of the Quaker Migration.
Levi was owner of a mercantile store, selling only goods made by free, not slave labor. He built a brick house ADAPTED to hiding escaped slaves. There was a hiding place under the eaves of the maid's room, and an underground spring formed a hidden water source in the cellar; thus, they did not have to walk to the outside well.
With the help of his like-minded neighbors, Levi aided TWO THOUSAND escaped slaves find freedom. His house was known as the "Grand Central Station" of the Underground Railroad.
Levi and Catherine continued their abolitionist work after moving to Cincinnati in 1847. However, only this Fountain City house survives as evidence of Coffin's work..