Who's Who in Pennsylvania's Underground Railroad

H Surnames

Haines, Jacob
Location: Muncy, Lycoming County ; Role: UGRR stationmaster, conductor

Documentation: Mary Rhodes Haines, Family History of the Haines Family, 1893, quoted in Adona R. Sick, History of Sullivan County Churches, 1965, reprinted online at http://www.rootsweb.com/~pasulliv/churches/Adona.htm, accessed January 4, 2006.

Family historian Mary Rhodes Haines noted "The Haines home on the Wolf Run--near Muncy--was the center of a lovely hospitality, a refuge for the afflicted, and particularly so for the fugitive slave."  She notes that fugitives were received at the Haines home from MIcajah Speakman of Chester County, bearing a note signed "Humanity."  Jacob Haines would send fugitives in a wagon or carriage "over the mountains to John Hill," who would then take them to Marshall Battin in the Elklands, Sullivan County.

Hallock, Samuel T.
Location: Riceville, Bloomfield Township, Crawford County ; Role: UGRR stationmaster

Documentation: Robert C. Brown, History of Crawford County (Part 5), 1885.

Born in New York and raised in a Quaker household, Samuel T. Hallock came to Crawford County in 1847 where he ran a store, a gristmill and a sawmill.  He was an active conductor on the underground railroad in this region.

Hamilton, James
Location: White Township, Indiana County ; Role: UGRR stationmaster

Documentation: Capt. C. T. Adams and E. White, History of Indiana County, 1880.

Fugitives were fed and hidden in the barn of farmer James Hamilton, who lived near Indiana.  David Myers, another nearby farmer, would conduct fugitives from Hamilton's barn to the home of Jacob Myers, in town. 

Hammett, William
Location: Green Township, Franklin County ; Role: UGRR activist

Documentation: G. Craig Caba, Episodes of Gettysburg and the Underground Railroad, 1998, p. 100-101.  G. Craig Caba, presentation before the Camp Curtin Historical Society, Harrisburg, PA, February 2002.

Robert Black, a merchant in the nearby town of Greenwood, received fugitives from Hiram Wertz, about eight miles away in Quincy.  Black "saw to it that the fugitives were cared for, working along with William Hammett, then superintendent of the Caledonia Furnace."   The Caledonia Iron Works and the nearby African American settlement known as "Africa" provided shelter and aid for fugitive slaves.  Thaddeus Stevens, owner of the Caledonia Iron Works, used fugitive slaves as workers in his furnace, providing them with shelter, food and money.  He also employed them in the construction of the railroad line--dubbed the Tapeworm Railroad--that went from the iron works into Gettysburg.  Fugitives were told to follow the railroad bed to the end of the line in Gettysburg, and to meet an agent, "Jack" Hopkins, at a large woodpile there.

Harris, David
Location: Harrisburg, Dauphin County ; Role: provided shelter to fugitives (passive role)

Documentation:  "Sallie Harris Dies; 82 Years," The Evening News (Harrisburg, PA), 26 December 1928, p. 15.

Grandson of John Harris II, founder of Harrisburg. Freedom seekers were sheltered in a barn on the family homestead at 117 South Front Street in Harrisburg. Despite being a county and borough official, David Harris unofficially allowed, and apparently privately approved, giving refuge and aid to fugitive slaves. In an interview given shortly before her death in 1928, his daughter Sallie described the activity:

According to stories told by Miss Sallie to her nephew, Thomas H. Willson, the old homestead was used extensively in slavery days as one of the famous "underground railroad" units, where slaves were secreted until they could be sent on to a station further removed from the South, and then shipped into Canada.

Although David Harris was at one time burgess of Harrisburg, and supposed to use his authority in catching runaway slaves, scores of slaves were hidden at various times in the barn of the old homestead, where Mrs. Harris supplied them with food and clothing and later had them sent further North. Miss Sallie inferred that her father, Burgess Harris, unofficially was cognizant of what was going on, but so long as it was not officially brought to his attention, he just winked at the comings and goings of the runaway slaves.

Harris, Elizabeth B.
Location: Harrisburg, Dauphin County ; Role: Hid runaways in family barn; provided shelter, food and clothing to freedom seekers.

Documentation:  "Sallie Harris Dies; 82 Years," The Evening News (Harrisburg, PA), 26 December 1928, p. 15.

Wife of Harrisburg Burgess David Harris, Elizabeth hid runaways in the family barn behind their home at 117 South Front Street in Harrisburg. She also fed them, provided clothing and arranged for someone to guide them to the next station. See the reminiscences of her daughter Sallie, with the listing for David Harris.

Hartsock, Henry G.
Location: Patton Township, Centre County ; Role: UGRR stationmaster, conductor; abolitionist

Documentation:  John Blair Linn, History of Centre and Clinton Counties, 1883, p. 372-373.

An early abolitionist in Centre County, Henry G. Hartsock also welcomed fugitive slaves onto his property.  Some freedom seekers, according to historian Linn, came to Hartsock's house by way of Cross' tavern. Hartsock used hiding places in the woods until nightfall, then led fugitives to the home of Samuel Henderson, an African American living nearby.  Henderson would then conduct the fugitives to the next station.

Haws, David
Location: Northern Chester County ; Role: UGRR acdtivist

Documentation: Harrisburg Star Independent, 23 June 1893, page 1

News item: "David Haws, a venerable citizen of northern Chester county, died yesterday at Frick's Locks. He was a pronounced abolitionist and aided the fleeing slaves on their way north by the underground railway system."

The above news item appeared in several southcentral Pennsylvania newspapers, with identical wording, on the same date, indicating it was transmitted by an early news service, one noting "by telegram." More information is needed on this person.

Hays, Thompson
Location: South Mahoning Township, Indiana County ; Role: UGRR sympathizer

Documentation: Capt. C. T. Adams and E. White, History of Indiana County, 1880.

Carpenter Thompson Hays sometimes aided UGRR conductor and neighbor Ben Warren with his operations.  In one instance cited by historians Adams and White, Hays was enlisted to shoot a bloodhound that had picked up the scent of the fugitives in Ben Warren's party.

Hazlett, Albert
Location: Washington County, Chambersburg ; Role:  Harpers Ferry raider

Documentation: W.E.B. DuBois, John Brown, 2001 Modern Library Edition, p. 200-201.

Pennsylvania native Albert Hazlett joined John Brown in Kansas, and stayed with the old man through the raid on Harpers Ferry in October 1859, later writing "I am willing to die in the cause of liberty."  He and fellow raider Osborne Perry Anderson slipped out of Harpers Ferry amid the confusion and chaos and made their way back to Pennsylvania, where they separated.  Hazlett made his way to Chambersburg, intending to meet up with Anderson, but was forced to leave town when sheriff's deputies converged upon his place of refuge.  He was captured near Carlisle, extradited to Virginia, tried and executed in 1860.

Heck, Peter
Location: Uniontown, Fayette County ; Role: slave catcher

Documentation:  "Uniontown Had Its Station on Underground Railroad," Morning Herald (Uniontown, PA), 02 July 1976, page 25.

From the 1976 news article:

But there were slave catchers here, too...One of the most notorious was Uniontown tailor Peter Heck. Heck was associated with Bob Stump, a Virginian who claimed all captured runaways as his own, and either sold them or collected a reward.

It was a touch-and-go situation on many occasions for Heck, who would be manhandled by the slaves and their white sympathizers when they could catch him. Heck told one story of an expedition to Blairsville in which a huge Negro turned on him and booted him down the street with successive kicks until the slave-hunter was rescued by the mayor and constable.
The Blairsville incident happened on April 1, 1858. Stump, Heck and a deputy marshall went to Blairsville in search of alleged fugitive slave Richard Newman, who had been living in Blairsville for six years. Local residents forcefully drove the three slavecatchers away, with one African American resident chasing and kicking Heck down the canal towpath. ("Underground Railroad: 'Inner light' guided abolitionists; many stops in region," Dave Sutor, CNHI News Service, Feb 28, 2020, The Meadville Tribune, https://www.meadvilletribune.com/news/underground-railroad-inner-light-guided-abolitionists-many-stops-in-region/article_e5f6c712-597c-11ea-9b1f-77d8c7298190.html)

Henderson, Richard
Location: Meadville, Crawford County ; Role: African American UGRR stationmaster, conductor;

Documentation:  "Historical marker in Meadville honors Henderson's Underground Railroad contributions," Meadville Tribune, 28 February, 2020.

Text of PA historical marker: "Born a slave in Maryland in 1801, he escaped as a boy and about 1824 came to Meadville. A barber, he was long active in the Underground Railroad. His Arch Street house, since torn down, is estimated to have harbored some 500 runaway slaves prior to the Civil War."

Henderson, Samuel
Location: Patton Township, Centre County ; Role: UGRR stationmaster, conductor;

Documentation:  John Blair Linn, History of Centre and Clinton Counties, 1883, p. 372-373.

Samuel Henderson would receive fugitive slaves from various places, including wagonmaker Henry G. Hartsock.  An African American, Henderson ran an important station in the area. Henderson would then conduct the fugitives to the next station.

Henry, Frank  1838 - 1889
Location: Wesleyville, Erie County ; Role: UGRR stationmaster, conductor; radical abolitionist

Documentation:  Erie Weekly Gazette, 14 October 1889;

Presque Isle lighthouse keeper Frank Henry assisted local underground railroad operatives in Wesleyville, and had planned to join John Brown in his raid on Harpers Ferry, Virginia, but was not able to join him in time.

Heslop, James Gale  1797 - 1865
Heslop, Charlotte Bracewell
Location: Johnstown, Cambria County ; Role: UGRR stationmaster, conductor; abolitionist

Documentation:  Henry W. Storey, History of Cambria County

English-born James Heslop came to America in 1818 and settled in Johnstown in 1832.  He opened a successful wallpaper shop in that town and became generally known throughout the region.  He and his wife Charlotte, both strong abolitionists, began sheltering, feeding and aiding fugitive slaves before sending them further north.  They hid slaves under their roof, in a nearby abandoned mine, and in their stable.

Hindman, Rev. John
Location: Dayton, Armstrong County ; Role: UGRR conductor

Documentation: A. J. Davis, History of Clarion County, Pennsylvania, 1887, p. 122.

Rev. John Hindman, a Seceder Presbyterian minister in Dayton, Armstrong County, sent freedom seekers to William Blair, a 53-year-old farmer living with a large family in Porter Township, Clarion County.

Hopkins, John "Jack"  1813 - 1868
Location: Gettysburg, Adams County ; Role: UGRR stationmaster, conductor, activist

Documentation: G. Craig Caba and Adam Ross, Gettysburg: 1836 Battle Over Slavery, 2004, n.p.; G. Craig Caba, Episodes of Gettysburg and the Underground Railroad, 1998, p. 73-77;  G. Craig Caba, presentation before the Camp Curtin Historical Society, Harrisburg, PA, February 2002.

As custodian of Pennsylvania College at Gettysburg, John "Jack" Hopkins was well known to the students.  Less well known was his role in meeting and conducting fugitive slaves to safety.  He worked closely with abolitionist Thaddeus Stevens, meeting fugitives who had followed the uncompleted railway bed that began near Stevens' Caledonia Iron Works and ended near the college, and he worked with several college students, members of the Beta Delta fraternity, who took up activist roles with the Underground Railroad (see Wert, J. Howard).  According to Craig Caba, if Hopkins could not be found, fugitives had been instructed to backtrack to the stone house of the Widow Thompson, who would shelter and feed them until Hopkins became available.

Caba notes that Hopkins may also have taken fugitives to his home at Washington and High Streets, in the borough of Gettysburg.

Hughes, Daniel
Location: Williamsport (Freedom Road, Loyalsock Township), Lycoming County ; Role: UGRR stationmaster, conductor, activist

Documentation: Pennsylvania State Historical Marker; Lou Hunsinger, Jr., "Daniel Hughes, Giant of Freedom Road," Williamsport Sun Gazette, reprinted online at http://www.historicwilliamsport.com/Features/Daniel%20Hughes.htm, accessed December 18, 2005.

Part Mohawk Indian, lumber raftsman Daniel Hughes transported fugitive slaves from Maryland up the Susquehanna River north of Williamsport to his home.  He would shelter and feed fugitives in his home before he and his sons would conduct them to the next station at Trout Run.  Hughes may have had contacts in Harrisburg, a stop along the Susquehanna River for many raftsmen, as his story is sometimes included in Harrisburg Underground Railroad lore.

In the 1850 census, Hughes (spelled "Hughs") is recorded as a 32-year-old laborer, mulatto, with $500 in real estate. He lives with his wife Ann (nee Rotch), a 30-year-old mulatto, and four-year-old John F. Hughes, mulatto.  Also in the household is the African American James Thompson family:  James, age 52, Sharlott, 44, Eliza, 6, Samuel 4, and Phebe, 2. (1850 Census, Loyalsock Township, Lycoming County, Pennsylvania, 17 September 1850)  This location consisted of a small community that included nine other Black families and several white families.

Hughes, Thomas 
Location: Jefferson, Greene County ; Role: UGRR stationmaster (needs more research)

Documentation: William J. Switala, Underground Railroad in Pennsylvania, Stackpole Books, 2001, p. 75.

Maryland-born Thomas Hughes laid out the town of Jefferson in Greene County and built a home there in 1814, which was at some point reportedly used to shelter fugitive slaves.  But Thomas Hughes, Sr. was a slaveholder who died in 1823, which begs the question as to which of his children became abolitionists and underground railroad agents.  His son, Thomas Hughes Jr. is listed in Jefferson County in 1850, and may be the famous UGRR agent.

It is also important to remember the role of the slaves of Thomas Hughes.  The Hughes house was built by slave labor, and the coal mines from which Hughes derived a comfortable income were dug and operated by slaves.  See the discussion on the Afrigeneas boards(http://www.afrigeneas.com/forum-ugrr/index.cgi?noframes;read=179)  about Daniel Ferrell, a slave of Thomas Hughes.


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