Karen Arnett

Posts by Karen Arnett

Picture from Cable descendent Sylvia Rummel used with permission

Rare photograph sold at recent auction

A rare photograph of Levi Coffin which we feature in our Escape of the 28 booklet was just sold at auction.  The story of this photo was published in the Fulton Sun on June 26, 2019.  This picture is believed to be taken by prominent nineteenth century African-American photographer, abolitionist and businessman, James Presley Ball here in
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Charles Campbell

All Or Nothin’, film about the Escape of the 28, to screen at CAM March 18th

The film by Charles Campbell, All Or Nothin’, which is a dramatization of the Escape of the 28 from Boone County Ky, through College Hill, en route to Canada, was inspired by our research on the Escape of the 28.  Local actors from the Cincinnati Black Theater Company and others were cast in the film that was
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Wesleyan Cemetery and Kathy Dahl, historian, featured

Local historian and colleague in Hamilton Avenue Road to Freedom committee talks with Cincinnati People about Wesleyan Cemetery.


For the Forgotten African-American Dead

Jim Crow’s legacy has many faces. In this case, as the article For the Forgotten African-American Dead (Brian Palmer, 7 Jan 2017, NY Times) illustrates, it’s in the obliteration of Black history –  the history of heroic participation by black soldiers in the Civil War, the history of esteemed forebears – by the neglect of
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Ta Nahisi Coates at Xavier University

In the era of the Underground Railroad, enslaved people of color took charge of emancipating themselves, and white abolitionists figured out ways to assist. It took later historians like Larry Gara and Keith Griffler to deconstruct the myth that set white people up as the conductors and even originators of the northward movement of freedom
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Ravine To Freedom, Cincinnati Parks program, Feb. 20th

Ravine To Freedom, Cincinnati Parks program, Feb. 20th

Two free events for Black History Month, one through Cincinnati City Parks and the other through Cincinnati Public Library. See details below.  Ravine to Freedom (Free Public Program) Cincinnati Parks’ LaBoiteaux Woods Nature Preserve,  5400 Lanius Lane,         Cincinnati, OH  45224 Saturday, February 20, 2016, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.   All Aboard!  Step back in time
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richard debaptiste portrait

Rev. Richard DeBaptiste and Mt. Healthy’s Black Community

Mt. Healthy, Hamilton County, Ohio was home to a thriving community of African Americans prior to the Civil War. The 1860 census records 230 people of color in the Mt. Healthy post office portion of Springfield Twp, comprising 50+ families. These were people born in all of the slave states of the South.  Some families
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Plot of Cheney property

In search of Mulberry Grove…

Where exactly was Charles Cheney’s farm, and the house that served as one of Mt. Healthy’s waystations on the Underground Railroad? Local lore varies on the location: one account has it near the old school site at Harrison and Compton. Another says it was near the north end of Mt. Healthy, close to the present day
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a local article on Cheney

    I was so excited to have found the Frank Woodbridge Cheney manuscript with new information on Cheney (see page on website), and naming a Black conductor on the “Railroad”, that I wrote this article for the local paper. It was published today as a guest column. Click here to link to the article.
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A portion of Hamilton Avenue in Mt. Healthy renamed to commemorate local abolitionist Charles Cheney.

Charles Cheney Way on Hamilton Avenue in Mt. Healthy honored local abolitionist

In 1999 the Mt. Healthy City Council renamed a portion of Hamilton Avenue at Compton Road to commemorate Charles Cheney, who lived in Mt. Healthy (then Mt. Pleasant) from 1835-1847 or 1848. He was twice a candidate of the antislavery Liberty Party for state office. In later years his son Frank Woodbridge Cheney recounted Charles’
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