Illinois Underground Railroad
Illinois Underground Railroad

In Northeastern Illinois and Chicago

3,000 to 4,500 freedom seekers passed through northeastern Illinois from the 1820s through 1861.  Of those traveling through Chicago, roughly one-third came to Chicago and went by ship to Detroit and Canada, one-third traveled by train from Chicago after 1852, and one-third left Chicago overland first south through the Calumet region and then east through northwest Indiana and onto Michigan.  Their movements reached from La Salle and Livingston Counties to the southwest into Will and Cook Counties, with some traveling through what are now the western and northern suburbs.


MY WORK  -- My presentations and publications include:                                                                              

The Underground Railroad South of Chicago - 2019

To the River:  The Remarkable Journey of Caroline Quarlls, a Freedom  

      Seeker on the Underground Railroad - 2019

Barefoot to Chicago:  Freedom Seekers and the Underground Railroad

      in Northeastern Illinois - TBP in 2023


Papers and presentations at the annual symposium of the Illinois State Historical Society:   

2006 -- "The UGRR South of Chicago"

2007 -- "Chicago and the UGRR"                                                                   

2010 -- "Freedom Seekers in Illinois"                                                                            

July, 2010 -- presented “Freedom Seekers in Illinois” at the annual   

      National Park Service Network to Freedom conference in 


July, 2014 -- presented "Women Freedom Seekers and Chicago"  at the    

       annual National Park Service Network to Freedom conference in  



For my suggestions on the most important UGRR sites to be recognized and added to the Network to Freedom historic site listings with the National Park Service,  go to the "Top 7 Needed UGRR Sites"