Mr. Speaker, the Niagara region played an important role in the Underground Railroad. Niagara's Freedom Trail was a network of people, like Harriet Tubman, who hid and guided slaves as they fled the United States and went to Canada.
For hundreds of slaves in the 1820s, St. Catharines was the final station on this long journey to freedom. In Welland, a hotel known as The Traveler's House employed approximately 10 escaped slaves as woodcutters. One of these men, Jim Wilson, had escaped from Missouri following the Civil War and had worked his way north by boat, foot, and train for more than a year before he finally crossed the suspension bridge in Niagara Falls and settled in Welland.
On February 11, a partnership between the Welland Museum and the Welland Public Library will see a collection of artifacts and books on the Underground Railroad put on display at the library's main branch. The event will also include a short presentation by the museum and will give participants the opportunity to share their own stories and to discuss the events of this important part of our region's history.
As Black History Month approaches in February, I applaud the work of the Welland Museum and the Welland Public Library in their efforts to bring this history to life.