John Rankin essay on Lane Seminary   Save
John Rankin essay on Lane Seminary
Description: This 31-page essay, titled "Review of the Statement of the Faculty of Lane Seminary in Relation to the Recent Difficulties in that Institution," was written by Reverend John Rankin (1793-1886), of Ripley, Ohio. Rankin, pastor of the Presbyterian Church of Ripley, Ohio, defends students who in 1834 established an anti-slavery society at Lane Seminary, a theological college in Cincinnati. School administrators ordered the students to dissolve the society or leave the school. At the invitation of Reverend John J. Shipherd, the students left Lane Seminary and went north to Oberlin College, where they established a tradition of anti-slavery activity. The essay is part of a larger collection of John Rankin Papers by and about Rankin and his work as an abolitionist. The collection also includes essays by Rankin's children about their father and his work with the Underground Railroad. Rankin is credited with helping two thousand slaves escape to freedom. The character of Eliza in Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin was reportedly inspired by a story of a woman who crossed the partially-frozen Ohio River with a baby in her arms, making it safely to Rankin's house. His house in Ripley was a stop on the Underground Railroad. It is situated at the top of a hill overlooking the Ohio River, and escaping slaves climbed the 100-step "Freedom Stairway" from the river to reach the house. The house has several secret rooms in which fugitive slaves were hidden. A light was placed in the window of the house to indicate that it was safe for slaves to approach. The John Rankin House is now a museum, part of the Ohio History Connection's state-wide network of historic sites. View on Ohio Memory.
Image ID: Om1375_1142886_001
Subjects: Civil Liberties; Education; Religion in Ohio; Abolition; Abolitionists; Societies and clubs; Students; Universities and colleges
Places: Ripley (Ohio); Brown County (Ohio); Cincinnati (Ohio); Hamilton County (Ohio)