An often overlooked part of Springfield’s history is being unearthed this summer.
An archeological dig is underway in the Lincoln Home National Historic Site and state archeologist Terrance Martin says they are finding the home of Jameson Jenkins, a friend of Abraham Lincoln and a conductor with the Underground Railroad.
“In the 1850’s he was involved with an event recorded in the newspapers called the ‘Great Slave Stampede’ where slaves escaped from the St. Louis area and made their way to Springfield. The roads were so bad they had to spend the night here. Jenkins helped some get up to Bloomington, Illinois,” says Martin.
The dig site is open to the public and displays pottery and parts of the long-demolished home. Martin says hundreds of visitors from across the globe stop and watch the excavation.