Before the Civil War, Blairsville was a transportation terminus connecting east to west over the Appalachian Mountains via canal and railroads. Blairsville had one of the larger black communities in Indiana county and the first AME Zion Church organized here in 1844. Blairsville's anti-slavery leadership included wealthy merchant John Graff and black community leader Lewis Johnson. Collaborating with them in UGRR activities were men, women and children acting as conductors, agents, suppliers and watchmen plus a citizenry willing to challenge, in one way or another, attempts by slave hunters to 'kidnap' runaways. Black community members led two citizen 'rescues' of freedom seekers, one in 1858 and the other in 1860. The Blairsville Passport to Freedom UGRR Experience interprets UGRR, anti-slavery and African-American activities in the county. Interpretive activities include walking tours, cemetery & driving tours, living history programs and yearly re-enactments.
Visitor Information: Currently open to public.
Location: P.O. Box 92, Blairsville, 15717
National Park Unit: No
Ownership: Denise Jennings-Doyle
Location Type: Program
People/Organizations Associated with the site: Vigilance Committee
UGRR Operatives: John Graff,Lewis Johnson