Canton property of suspected Underground Railroad stop adorned with for sale sign
Although there is no documented proof, the home located on Warren Road thought to be stopover for slaves headed to Canada
A Canton Township home built in 1849 that local historians believe was once a stopover for slaves headed to Canada has a “For Sale” sign planted on its sprawling property.
The suspected (but not proven) “Underground Railroad” home, which sits on the southeast corner of Warren and Morton Taylor roads, is not registered as an historical site, so purchasers of the property could, theoretically, demolish the brick house if they choose.
Canton historian David Clark, who has spent over 200 hours researching the property, leans toward the belief that the property was used as a sanctuary for slaves seeking freedom in Canada, but he admitted the Underground Railroad connection will probably never be proven beyond a doubt because of the secrecy that enveloped the safe passage of slaves in the mid-1800s.
One piece of compelling evidence that remains on the site is a brick engraved with a three-leaf clover pattern — something historians insist was used by Underground Railroad homeowners to signify safe homes.
“Proving beyond a doubt that a house was part of the Underground Railroad is difficult because it was something that was not heavily advertised,” Curtis explained to SocialHouseNews.com Editor-In-Chief Ed Wright.
Curtis’s research revealed that the property was purchased in 1858 by Issacher Hughes, a native of Steuben County, New York, which was heavily populated by Quakers. Quakers were in favor of freeing slaves.
Former owners of the home, Jamie and Laura Flora, discovered Civil War-era newspapers that were used for insulation in the back room of the home.
There is also a crawl space in the back of the original structure (an addition was built sometime in the 20th century) that was potentially designed, historians have noted, so that on-the-run slaves could have entered the home by climbing a short wall when pursued by bounty hunters.
Although a sign planted on the three-acre lot reads “For Sale”, internet searches show the 1,652-square-foot house is for rent at $2,100 per month. An online for-sale listing of the property with an asking price of $750,000 was removed in September.
SocialHouseNews.com contacted the Realtor listed on the sign but has not yet received a reply regarding the details of the home’s status.