John Freeman Walls Historic Site & Underground Railroad Museum, Lakeshore

4.3
#3 of 7 in Things to do in Lakeshore
Specialty Museum · Hidden Gem · Museum
Create an itinerary including John Freeman Walls Historic Site & Underground Railroad Museum
The John Freeman Walls Historic Site and Underground Railroad Museum is a 20acre historical site located in Puce, now Lakeshore, Ontario, Canada, about 25 miles east of Windsor.
To some the Underground Railroad is thought to be just that, a series of underground railroads that were built to hide and transport former slaves that were seeking to escape from the southern areas of the United States. In actuality it was a web of hidden, interconnected, man-made paths that were shrouded by forests and brush which assisted in the concealment of former slaves until they could reach a Refugee Terminal. These routes had two things in common. They all headed north and towards the free soil of the northern United States and Canada; and at various points along the way they all intersected with Refugee Terminals where runaway slaves could take shelter and would be given food and clothing. Despite the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850, which stated that “any federal marshal who did not arrest on demand any person believed to be a runaway slave could be fined $1000. As for the runaway slaves themselves, they would be arrested and stripped of any and all civil rights”. During the era of the Underground Railroad, the site was among one of several major termini in Southwestern Ontario for fugitive slaves. These locations represented the end of a slave's long journey to freedom where he/she could receive shelter and support until they were ready to move on and begin their own new lives in Canada. As it developed, the site became an important nexus for both the local black community and newly arrived fugitive slaves from the southern United States. Today, many of the original buildings remain, and in 1985, the site was opened as an Underground Railroad Museum. The site forms part of the African-Canadian Heritage Tour in Southern Ontario.
Make John Freeman Walls Historic Site & Underground Railroad Museum a part of your Lakeshore vacation plans using our Lakeshore travel itinerary planner.
Source
Create a full itinerary - for free!

John Freeman Walls Historic Site & Underground Railroad Museum reviews

Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
2 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • If you want to step back in time and feel what it was like to be a part of the Underground Railway, this is the place to go! 
    If you want to step back in time and feel what it was like to be a part of the Underground Railway, this is the place to go!  more »
  • This is a very interesting museum and historic site with authentic structures from the Underground railroad to freedom. It is run by Dr. Bryan Walls, a direct decedent of John Freeman Walls; the... 
    This is a very interesting museum and historic site with authentic structures from the Underground railroad to freedom. It is run by Dr. Bryan Walls, a direct decedent of John Freeman Walls; the...  more »
Google
  • It is not over and is flooded
  • When I was in high school I was one of many students that help with the building and maintenance and learning from my teachers, Winston and Allen Walls about the history behind it all will always be forever my happiest memories with knowing I learned from John Freeman Walls descendants that they keep that history alive to teach generations to come ,,,a must place to visit, you won't be disappointed.

Plan your trip to Lakeshore

  • Get a personalized trip
    A full day by day itinerary based on your preferences
  • Customize it
    Refine your trip. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it
    Choose from the best hotels and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it
    Everything in one place. Everyone on the same page.