Compiled by William Roy Mock
Did you have family members living in Bedford County, Pennsylvania, prior to and during America’s Civil War that might have participated in the Underground Railroad? Perhaps, your ancestors may have grasped the hand of other abolitionists; provided nourishment to a fugitive or sheltered the horse and wagon that carried the concealed slave out of oppression. Mock’s composition brings to light such contemplation.
William Roy Mock resides in the original log cabin on the Walker homestead; established in 1794. Share the author’s excitement, as one discovery after another, stimulates further exploration of the cabin, land and surrounding areas of the northwest corner of Bedford County. The book contains numerous “on site” photos, along with sketched illustrations, which greatly enhance the connotation of the informational text. Intellectually, accompany him, as he retraces ancestral and fugitive travel along primitive, yet once considered key routes.
The role of Quakers in the operation of the Underground Railroad in eastern Pennsylvania is well documented. That they lived and aided escapees in south central/western Pennsylvania is not as well known. However, western migration of their descendants carried with them, not only their name, but apparently the steadfast doctrine of the Society of Friends. Diagrams are used to exhibit the direct and collateral relationships of the key characters participating with the secretive network. Labeled map scans are used to highlight the approximate residential sites of participants. Included with the character introduction are the antiquated and profoundly treasured photo scans of Benjamin H. Walker and Abner Walker, Sr.
Acquired documentation is examined, along with family oral and written history. Investigations with supportive evidence are analyzed, yielding the author’s noted perspective; continually open to adjustment through future research findings. Mock’s investigative efforts resulted in the distinction of acquiring the first U.G.R.R. historical marker in Bedford County (2006); approved by the Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission. His quest lets us learn to be still and stand with his and our quiet ancestors to remember the importance of freedom and the moral right.
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