Four charged in overdose death Underage felonies strain county system Fayetteville looks forward to 2018 celebration Russellville council discusses underground tanks in village Marilyn A Wren Larry E Carter Virginia L McQuitty Practices get underway for fall sports Jays soon to begin quest for SHAC title Western Brown to hold Meet the Teams Night and OHSAA parent meeting Aug. 8 Norville F Hardyman Carol J Tracy James Witt Hundreds of Narcan doses used in 2016 Heavy weekend rain causes flooding and damaged roads Child Focus hosts Chamber of Commerce meeting Mary F McElroy Broncos out to defend SBAAC American Division soccer title Bronco 5K to take place Aug. 5 EHS volleyball team ready for new season Michael C Cooper Raymond Mays Harry E Smittle Jr Mary A Flaugher Western Brown’s Leto excels in Australia Rockets ready for 1st season in SBAAC Paddling, hiking activities available at Ohio State Parks SB Warriors get set to hit gridiron for 2nd year of varsity football Scotty W Johnson Glenna V Moertle Ricky L Hoffer Ruth E Ward David A Watson Janet L Dotson Vilvie S King Steven C Utter Cropper joins Fallis at Bethel-Tate Local kids find success in world of martial arts 13th annual Bronco 5K Run and Fitness Walk set for Aug. 5 Teams compete in memory of Randy Fulton Mike W Smith Roger Helton David A Borders Timothy E Argenbright Joseph W Sherrill Frances K Pedigo Cecil N Graham Sawyers charged in sex for heroin plot Group demands changes at ELSD Blanche Malblanc Pauline L Kirk Over 70 take part in 11th Joe Myers 5K Classic Lions Club 4th of July Festival brings outdoor fun to Ripley ODNR reminds visitors to swim safe this summer Changes in high school track and field/cross country rules include school issued and approved uniforms Betty L Philpott Judy B Williams Billie J Russell Remembering Ravye 25 attend volleyball camp in Fayetteville Western Brown hosts Pee Wee Football Camp Eugene L Baumann Kids enjoy a ‘Touch-a-Truck’ event in Mt. Orab New police chief takes over in Fayetteville BC Chamber moving forward on 2017 SummerFest Two killed in wrong way crash in Mt. Orab Jack Hamilton Charles L Glover Maxine M Stires Western Brown youth basketball camps a success Leto to represent Team USA in Australia Broncos hard at work in preparation for fall season Eastern approves bowling team Phyllis Ruth Lois A Manley Eddie L Carr Thomas L Carnahan Cameron Barkley Walter J McGee Gary J Graham George D Johnson Walter F Crawford Jr Charles E Meranda Jr Corbin testifies before Ohio Senate Five arrested in Hamersville drug bust Neil Diamond tribute band coming Hyde finds home at Midway Youngsters work to improve on hoop skills at Eastern basketball camps Sizer named All-District Honorable Mention Western Brown’s Barnes earns All-State, All-District honors Local players compete in SWOFCA Ron Woyan East/West All-Star Game 6th annual Ravye Williams Memorial 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament set for June 24 Clarence E Teal Rosie B Poe Monard C Boots James P Conrad James T Dinser Scott J Swearingen Eastern’s Farris earns award for top 2-point field percentage in Ohio Georgetown’s Seigla earns All-District honors

The Parker House in Ripley, Ohio is an Underground Railroad site.

It has been awarded the status of a National Historic Landmark which is the highest award given by the National Park Service to historic sites. It is the former home of John P. Parker, who was born a slave, bought his own freedom and became a successful businessman. Parker was an abolitionist and a conductor on the Underground Railroad. By day he ran the Phoenix Foundry making all types of farm machinery and iron products and by night he helped fugitive slaves escape. He frequently crossed the Ohio River to transport those seeking freedom on the first leg of their journey north.

Parker was an amazing man. At age eight he was sold, chained to other slaves and made to walk ragged and barefoot from his original home in Virginia to Mobile, Alabama. It was on this journey that his spirit was ignited with the anger and hatred of bondage that would fuel his lifelong passion for helping others to freedom.

In Mobile, Parker was sold to a doctor. There he was taught to read, illegally, by the doctor’s sons. Several years later, Parker made multiple daring attempts to escape, but was returned to Mobile. In 1845, he was allowed to purchase his freedom by earning extra money at a foundry. Parker then moved to Ohio where he married Miranda Boulden of Cincinnati, and by 1849 the Parkers had settled in Ripley, Ohio a thriving abolitionist town of about 5000 with 300 members in their anti-slavery society. Parker worked with other Ripley conductors on the Underground Railroad, such as, the Rev. John Rankin and the Collins brothers.

Parker was successful in many arenas. During the Civil War, Parker was a key recruiter for the 27th Ohio Volunteer Infantry (Colored) Regiment. Parker’s foundry was a major employer in Ripley, employing both blacks and whites. He was a successful entrepreneur and inventor. Parker had three U.S. patents for agricultural inventions, among the earliest granted to an African-American.

Parker died in January 1900, leaving behind his wife, Miranda and six college educated children.

At the Parker House you will hear about the life and times of Parker and see beautiful paintings depicting Parker’s life. In the 1800’s Room, you can walk on the very floors that Parker walked and look through the windows from which Parker looked when he and his family lived in this home.

For more information about Parker check out his autobiography “His Promised Land” or the website www.johnparkerhouse.org.

To visit his restored home/museum contact: John P. Parker Historical Society, Inc., 300 N. Front Street, P.O. Box 246, Ripley, Ohio 45167.

Hours of Operation are May through November, open Friday & Saturday 10:00 a.m.- 5:00 p.m. and Sunday 1:00-5:00 p.m. Admission: Adults $4, Students (7-18) $2. Group tours available year-round by calling 937-392-4188.

The Parker House in Ripley is a National Historic Landmark as designated by the United States National Park Service.
http://newsdemocrat.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/web1_ParkerHouse1-CarolStivers-.jpgThe Parker House in Ripley is a National Historic Landmark as designated by the United States National Park Service.

By Carol Stivers

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2016 News Democrat