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John P. Parker House

The John P. Parker house in Ripley, Ohio was the home of a formerly enslaved African who purchased his freedom and became a crusader to abolish slavery with his courageous work as a conductor on the Underground Railroad. With only one documented exception, Parker did not hide freedom seekers at his Front Street property, but he lived and worked there at his iron foundry, starting as early as 1853. Rather than playing a role as an abolitionist speaker or activist in anti-slavery societies, Parker is significant for his unflagging and often heroic efforts to rescue freedom seekers from across the Ohio River, frequently returning to Kentucky to lead freedom seekers to safety. Parker’s story is recorded in an autobiography His Promised Land. In addition to his work with the Underground Railroad, Parker is important as an inventor who earned three patents in the 19th century. His restored home is a National Historic Landmark and an Official Project of Save America’s Treasures.

Visitor Information: Currently open to public.

Location: P.O. Box 264, Ripley, 45167

Website: John P. Parker House

National Park Unit: No

Ownership: John P. Parker Historical Society

Location Type: Site

UGRR Operatives: John P. Parker