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Union Township Library


The Union Township Public Library, est. 1915, has a unique collection of materials both published and unpublished geared towards illustrating the importance of Ripley, Ohio and surrounding areas in the Underground Railroad (UGRR) movement. The library's mission is to provide access to materials ranging from letters and unpublished manuscripts to modern publications on the UGRR history. From a fragile notebook listing contributors that financially assisted in the defense of John B. Mahan's 1838 felony trial to a 2011 publication of Grape Vine Dispatch: The Voice of Antislavery Messages by Caroline Miller, the collection attempts to provide researchers with both broad and detailed views of this area's history of UGRR participants and activities. The newspaper collection contains runs of local papers from 1821-1865 that give excellent accounts of local UGRR activity and abolitionist points of view. Our local history collection brings to one location many of the diverse resources that researchers require when studying Ohio and Kentucky UGRR participation. In the shadow of John Rankin's house, one of the prominent stations on the UGRR line, the library is primed to be the logical location for research materials, and has a director and board that actively support the continuing growth of the collection.

Visitor Information: Currently open to public.

Location: 27 Main Street, Ripley, 45167

National Park Unit: No

Location Type: Facility

UGRR Operatives: John Rankin