The following essay was written by a 12 year old student from Portville, NY.
The Underground Railroad was a passage to freedom for many slaves from the 1780's until the end of slavery in 1865. The penalty for assisting a fleeing slave was a $1,000 fine and imprisonment; all those involved showed great bravery. One of those valorous people was my heroine, Sarah Johnson.
This information is from: http://orbitist.com/2014/07/07/anti-slavery-activists-in-the-1800s/ Note from Sue M. Cross, Town of Mansfield Historian. Chamberlain is another of the men that helped to free the wife and son of run away slave Joseph (Jo) Norton whose tale is told in Eber Pettit's Sketches in the History of the Underground Railroad, ed. Willard McKinstry, Fredonia, Ny 1879. William Pitt Angel from Ellicottville, NY was another whose signature was on the letter to Hon. E. T.
In 1886, Jenks and Ross built a creamery or cheese factory at East Leon. At one time, it was a large plant that received milk from more than 1,000 cows. The same year, Hunt and Caneen erected a two-story building, 30x120, on East Road at Leon Center. It was known as the Jenks and Ross No. 2 factory.
One evening, in the fall of 1895, a group of Leon people met in the Albert Ackler Cheese Factory on Wells HIll to discuss organizing a Grange. It was decided to call Deputy E. C. Ferguson from Conewango for the purpose. Mr. Ferguson met with these people October 7, 1895 in the Leon Hotel, and from the twenty-two charter members, the following members were elected as its officers: -Worthy Master - Hiram Crofoot -Overseer - Harrison Franklin -Lecturer - Mrs. M.G. Peckham -Assistant Steward - Mark Gorsline -Gate Keeper - Aras Wood
Article from the Dunkirk Observer on June 9, 2011:
LEON - Jodi Oakes, a member of the Leon Historical Social, dedicated the 100-year monument on Memorial Day, May 30.
A Soldiers Monument was dedicated May 30, 1911. It consists of seven pieces of granite, a base 7-feet square, surmounted by a full-size sculptured soldier in honor of soldiers of the Civil War. It is 25-feet tall. Purchased from Frank Forness of Salamanca, it cost about $2,000. Captain Fancher Post 310, G.A.R., Women Relief Corps 156, Senator Albert T Fancher, and friends provided the funds.
The Plumb brothers, Joseph (1791-1870) and Alvin ( 1802-1877) were active abolitionists. Brother Ralph (1795-1865) may also have been an abolitionist However, at this time we do not have the documentation to make that claim.
On February 10th, 1909 Thomas Jefferson Saunders, a well-known barber in Franklinville, passed away in his home on Cherry Street. He was survived by his wife Nancy and a brother Aaron who lived in Detroit. He was predeceased by his adopted son Charlie.
Tom, as he was known by his friends and customers, was born to a slave couple in Tennessee in 1838. The slave owner, whose name was Rainey, decided that slavery was wrong and took the family to Indiana. There he freed them and helped them get to Canada.