Freedom Stations

Freedom Station Preservation

The National Underground Railroad Freedom Center provides technical assistance (TA) services "free-of-charge" to Freedom Stations affiliates. This service is designed to enhance the level and quality of historic preservation, interpretation and public relations/marketing for member organizations.

Our Practices

Freedom Center assigns a museum professional to each project receiving Its TA services. Specialists work with communities to achieve the following goals:

  • Focus on increasing public access
  • Alignment of historic assets with community needs and resources
  • Expand public attention on Underground Railroad story
  • Foster collaborative relationships between academics and grassroots activists
  • Cultivate capacity to establish longterm public/private relationships


John Parker Award

In the mid 1800s, Mr. John Parker was a "freedom conductor" working along the Ohio River who helped hundreds of enslaved persons to freedom. He was born into slavery but later purchased his own freedom. John Parker celebrated his self-liberation by repeatedly risking his life to help others.

The following areas are considered in selection of the award winner:

  • Personal examples of actions that demonstrate the lessons of courage and cooperation from the Underground Railroad movement.
  • Recognition by peers for knowledge of Underground Railroad history and contemporary applications.
  • Significant public presentations and/or publications/ research (primary authorship).

Recipients of this award receive a limited edition print of a new work commissioned by Cincinnati artist and historic preservationist David Day depicting historic Ripley, Ohio, and the home of John Parker. Only 20 of these images have been produced; the original will remain a part of the Freedom Center's permanent collection.

Past Honorees:

  • Henry Robert Burke, Marrieta, Ohio
  • Mary Edmond, Grand Rapids, Michigan
  • Betty Campbell, Ripley, Ohio


World Heritage Nomination

In 2001, The National Underground Railroad Freedom Center has invited to participate in the Transatlantic Slave Trade project, a UNESCO education effort designed to improve secondary school teaching about the slave trade, eliminate stereotypes and prejudice, and foster an intercultural dialogue among young people in the Atlantic world. Today, the Freedom Center continues its partnership with UNESCO in creating a national partnership to seek International recognition of the Underground Railroad as a World Heritage Site.

For more information on this nomination process, please contact Richard Cooper (513) 333-7594.