See Historic Michigan Abolitionist Home Decked Out for the Holidays
Take a virtual tour of the historic landmark Bonine House in Cass County Michigan.
There are so many beautiful historic homes in Michigan. Having a chance to take a peek inside can give you a feel for the history that took place within its walls.
The James E. Bonine House has been a landmark in Cass County since the earliest years of settlement of this area, according to the Underground Railroad Society of Cass County. The Bonine House and the original Carriage House, just across the street from the main home, are located in Vandalia, Michigan.
The historic home was a lookout post on the Underground Railroad, according to Wikipedia. The Villiage of Vandalia had a longtime affiliation with the Underground Railroad as well.
That affiliation is in a small part thanks to James E. Bonine, a member of the Young's Prairie Anti-Slavery Friends and whose family were staunch abolitionists. Bonine arrived in Cass County in 1843. He was originally from Indiana and followed his father to the area.
Bonine married the daughter of a stationmaster of the Underground Railroad, who also happened to be his neighbor in 1844. Construction on the landmark home for Bonine and his wife Sarah Ann began soon after.
Bonine was among the areas Quaker farmers who set aside land for freedom-seeking slaves and Freedmen. Many who escaped to the area would stay. A nearby settlement consisting of cabins and a school became known as 'Ramptown' and was located on Bonine's property.
The Underground Railroad Society of Cass County purchased Bonine's properties in December of 2010. The group has worked to restore the house to its original glory as a testament to the rich history and a symbol of freedom to those seeking freedom.