An Underground Railroad history tour of Columbia will be offered Saturday by two Lancaster County history organizations.
The Underground Railroad Learning Tour, which runs from 9 a.m. to noon, will feature presentations in outdoor covered spaces as well as guided walking tours of Columbia in small groups.
It’s a collaboration between the African American Historical Society of South Central PA and the Lancaster Mennonite Historical Society.
Those taking the tour will meet at the Columbia Crossing River Trails Center, 41 Walnut St., Columbia. Each person will receive a passport to the different Columbia stops, which will be stamped with an imprint supplied by the National Park Service Underground Railroad Network to Freedom.
A face covering is required.
Cost is $40 per person and requires advance registration by Wednesday. The learning tour will be held rain or shine.
The walking tour will include an option to take in the new Underground Railroad exhibit at the Columbia Historic Preservation Society museum on North Second Street.
Register at bit.ly/URTour or call 717-393-9745.
Stops include the Wright’s Ferry Mansion, the Lloyd Mifflin House, the William Wright House and the First National Bank Museum. There will be information about a self-guided driving tour of Zion Hill Cemetery on Fifth Street, as well.
Columbia is one of the earliest places where the term “underground railroad” was commonly used to describe a network supporting formerly enslaved African Americans journeying to new lives, according to a news release about the tour.
Stephen Smith and William Whipper, successful Black entrepreneurs in Columbia, provided financial assistance and leadership that made the town a key Underground Railroad gateway to destinations north and east, the release says.