The article was in the Dec 14, 2001 Syracuse N.Y Post Standard. It's kind of lenghty but to fill you in on the parts that were in reference to Bettingers: When Henrietta Person' grandfather , Thomas Warren was 9 years old, a Union soldier put him on the back of his horse and brought him from slavery in North Carolina to freedom in N.Y,. State. It was the end of the Civil War & Thomas knew he didn't want to stay in the former Confederacy. "He knew there was a better life, " said Persons whose grandfather settled in Onondaga County. Warrens story is one of hundreds that the preservation Association of Central New York is documenting with the help of a $9,000. grant from the state . Persons age 85 of Syracuse is a member of the advisory board for the project.....(it goes on to explain what the project is hoping to do with the grant money and how certain items they will find will be preserved for the future and a publication of the findings will be made available )
The project will be the most comprehensive look to date at the history and people surrounding the Underground Railroad & should debunk some myths about the movement to bring Slaves from the South to freedom in the Northern states and Canada said Judy Wellman, primary researcher for the project.
"People think the Underground Railroad was a secret thing, and sometimes it was, but in Syracuse in the mid 1850's it was wide open." Wellman said.
"One misconception was that all slaves travelling through Syracuse went on to Canada, but many settled here."
Wellman is hoping to find information about families such as the Bettingers who raised Thomas Warren in Oran, a hamlet in the Town of Pompey (Onondaga County)until Thomas was an adult.
Persons said her grandfather rarely told stories of his trip up North, and his family lost touch with the Bettingers.Wellman said she wants to find families such as the Bettingers.
"We have to understand why a white person is a rural town would decide to host a fugitive,"she said.
For Persons, the project will also show the strength of her race and the bravery of the people-slaves and hosts-who made the Underground Railroad a success.
If you give me a fax # I will try to fax you the entire copy, but that is the jist of it.
I live fairly close to Oran, but have no knowledge of any Bettingers living there, most came from Chittenango.
Which of Phillip's children are you descended from? I am descended from Leonard.
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