John Hunn (farmer)
June 25, 1818|
Kent County, Delaware
|Died||July 6, 1894
|Spouse(s)||Mary Jenkins Swallow|
Early life and family
Hunn was born June 25, 1818 in Kent County, Delaware, son of Ezekiel and Hannah Alston Hunn. He married first Mary Swallow and among their children was John, later the Governor of Delaware. Their farm, "Happy Valley," was near Cantwell's Bridge (now Odessa, Delaware) and they were members of the Appoquinimink Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends or Quakers. He married second Anne Jenkins.
Hunn was the Chief Engineer of the Underground Railroad in Delaware. He was responsible for the operation of a portion of the network that transported thousands of escapees through Delaware to Wilmington and thence to Pennsylvania and freedom. A man of great modesty, he declined to take credit for his heroic efforts.
In 1845 he assisted Samuel Hawkins in the escape of his family from slavery in Maryland. Along with Thomas Garrett, he was convicted and fined in 1848 by the U.S. District Court, presided over by U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice Roger B. Taney. Later he was fined twice for $10,000.00 each by the State of Delaware, but was advised the fines wouldn’t be imposed if he would promise not to continue his efforts to aid fugitives in their escape from slavery. Instead, Hunn "vowed never to withhold a helping hand from the down-trodden in their hour of distress." His land holdings and all his possessions were sold at sheriff’s sale and his family was left utterly destitute, but he continued his efforts to abolish slavery.
Death and legacy
Hunn died July 6, 1894 at Camden, Delaware and is buried at the Quaker Burial Ground, Camden.
||This article includes a list of references, related reading or external links, but its sources remain unclear because it lacks inline citations. (August 2010)|
- The Harriet Tubman Historical Society (2005). Camden Friends Meeting.
- Friends Intelligencer (1898). William T. Kelley: The Underground Railroad in the Eastern Shore of Maryland and Delaware.
- University of Delaware Library website 181 South College Ave., Newark, Delaware (302) 831-2965.
- Newark Free Library 750 Library Ave., Newark Delaware (302) 731-7550.
- Corbit-Calloway Memorial Library 2nd and High St. Odessa Delaware (302) 378-8838.
- Delaware Historical Society website 505 Market St., Wilmington, Delaware (302) 655-7161.
- New Castle County Court House Museum Delaware Street, New Castle, Delaware (302) 323-4453
- Aboard the Underground Railroad. Appoquinimink Friends Meetings House.
- State of Delaware. Camden Friends Meeting Marker.
- U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Underground Railroad Museum.
- Russ Ricket. Thomas Garrett biography.
- Wilmington Monthly Meeting of Friends. History of Wilmington Friends Meeting.
- Whispers of Angels A Story of the Underground Railroad.
- State of Delaware The Underground Railroad.
- Blue Hen's Chicken, June 6, 1848 U.S. Marshals Service
- Find A Grave. John Hunn.