The Battle Cry For Equality

The Battle Cry For Equality

Pennsylvania was the cradle of the Abolitionist Movement, and the state’s roots are intertwined with the quest for a truly free nation. Pennsylvania provided African American Patriots an opportunity to defend their rights in the long journey towards equality before, during and after the Civil War. The Battle Cry for Equality roadtrip allows you to experience the sites and tales of those heroic African Americans who helped make true freedom a reality for generations to come.

William Goodridge Freedom House and Underground Railroad Site – York

William C. Goodridge was one of the area's most active Underground Railroad stationmasters. A prominent African-American businessman in York, Goodridge built the tallest building of its time in York City, and often hosted anti-slavery meetings with noted abolitionists. Goodridge worked in a variety of fields during his life, but the one most connected with the Quest for Freedom involved Goodridge's work with the railroad industry — the Goodridge Reliance Line comprised 13 railroad cars serving 20 Pennsylvania communities. Goodridge would sometimes use his rail cars to transport freedom seekers along the Underground Railroad. He courageously hid them inside his house, in a secret room at the back of his basement, and in a straw lined trench located under a building at the back of his house. Today his home stands as evidence of the drive necessary for a Black man in his time to build the kind of wealth that Goodridge possessed, and as a testament to the extreme humanity he exhibited. He risked his life and his business to contribute to the progress of countless freedom seekers. Travel to the York Heritage Trust for a look at artifacts from Goodridge’s life and achievements. And don’t miss the Goodridge mural in the town square.

John Harris / Simon Cameron Mansion – Harrisburg

Simon Cameron, one of the eight owners of this ornate mansion in Harrisburg, was a Senator and President Lincoln's Secretary of War. He was also a long time abolitionist and early advocate for enlisting African American volunteers in the Civil War. Today, the mansion is home to the Historical Society of Dauphin County. A tour through the site will guide you through antique furniture, art-deco inspired rooms, and Dauphin County’s rich history. The front porch is the place from which Cameron famously viewed the USCT troops as they marched in 1865.

Mechanicsburg Museum Association & Station Master’s House – Mechanicsburg

This modest two-story building was built in 1863 for stationmaster George Zacharias and his family. It has long since been restored, even including antique furniture that once adorned these rooms. Walking around, you can practically imagine what it must have been like to live the life of a stationmaster in Mechanicsburg. The house itself gives you a picture perfect glimpse into the middle class lifestyle of families in the mid 19th century.


Eat Here: Café Fresco - Harrisburg

Located in the heart of Harrisburg's Restaurant Row, Café Fresco features Asian American flavors alongside wine and drink specialties.

Sleep Here: Comfort Inn Riverfront - Harrisburg

Located in the heart of downtown, this Harrisburg, PA hotel is less than six blocks from the Pennsylvania Capitol Complex, Strawberry Square, Whitaker Center for Science and the Arts and Harrisburg's Restaurant Row, featuring more than 60 different restaurants, pubs and night clubs.