An Underground Railroad Station and House Museum
Johnson House Historic Site, Inc. is one of Philadelphia’s few intact historic sites and waystations on the Underground Railroad that is open for tours. During the 19th century, and for several generations beyond, the Johnson House was owned by a family of Quaker abolitionists who worked with other European and African Americans – free and enslaved – to secure safe passage to freedom along an extensive network of clandestine routes and safe houses known as the Underground Railroad. After visiting, you will leave with an understanding of the audacious men and women who labored for the freedom of others and gain an appreciation for the courageous decisions made by enslaved Africans to embark on a perilous, hope-filled journey to freedom.
As Quakers, the abolitionist Johnsons believed in non-violence. They were “infidel practitioners” and advocates of racial equality. Their home was a refuge and safe place for enslaved Africans making their way to freedom.
The Underground Railroad was a dramatic and compelling form of radical protest – by Africans – against a system to enslave Africans for economic profit and to maintain slavery.
“I have freed many slaves, and could have freed thousands more if they only knew they were slaves.”– Harriet Tubman, Born 1820 Dorchester County, Maryland | Died March 10, 1913, Auburn, New York