Library designated Freedom Station


WARREN, Ohio – The Warren-Trumbull County Public Library has been designated a Freedom Station in conjunction with the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center in Cincinnati.

The library joins Youngstown State University and the Western Reserve Historical Society as Freedom Stations in the region.

Local roles. For the past five years, the library has sought to offer community programming concerning local Underground Railroad activities to further understanding of the part played by local individuals in the dangerous role of “conductor” along the Railroad.

Children’s programs have also been offered, with guest readers sharing Underground Railroad stories. In addition, the main library plays host to the Sutliff Museum of the Warren Library Association, a private group that manages the museum and supports library services.

The abolitionist activities of the Sutliff family are being chronicled, and plans call for a display center to be constructed outside of the museum.

Collaborators. Avenues for future collaboration between the library and the Freedom Center include:

* Offering Freedom Station program access to library customers via passwords from library computer terminals. Curriculum materials are currently under development for the Freedom Station program.

* Continuing to host programming and research into Underground Railroad activities in northeastern Ohio.

* Promoting the abolitionist activities of the Sutliff family.

* Exploring joint programming opportunities with the Freedom Center.

“We are very proud to become a Freedom Station,” said library director Robert D. Briell.

Sharing with community. “I think that future collaborative activities with the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center will serve to continue the spread of knowledge about regional abolitionist activities.

“Important activities like these from our historic past must be shared within our community as well as on a larger scale, and archived for the future.”

The National Underground Railroad Freedom Center teaches how to understand freedom in our daily lives. In 2004, the Freedom Center’s 158,OOO-square-foot, $11O-million complex will open.

It will house a performance theater; a hall for multicultural dialogue; six highly interactive history galleries; an education and research center; and serve as headquarters for a national network of Freedom Station affiliates.

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