Kansas home likely used on Underground Railroad demolished

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A Civil War-era home north of Topeka that was thought to have been a way station on the Underground Railroad has been demolished.

The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that Rhode Island abolitionist William Owen constructed the two-story building in 1858. The children of E.J. and Francis O’Hara, who sold it at a 2006 auction, said abolitionist John Brown was a frequent visitor. They also said Union Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman stayed there for a week before serving in the Civil War.

But the home was severely damaged in an October 2009 fire. A Topeka Fire Department report estimated the damage at $129,600.

The home stood on property owned by the trust of John D. Debacker, who died in 2012. His widow, Flora Debacker, confirmed Wednesday that workmen demolished it Tuesday.

 

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

 

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