Christiana Underground Railroad Center

FREEDOM BEGAN HERE in Christiana, Pennsylvania September 11, 1851!

The first spark in the kindling of the Civil War began when a Maryland plantation owner came to Christiana to retrieve four of his slaves - runaways. The 1850 federal Fugitive Slave Act gave rights to the slave owner to retrieve his slaves and to have arrested those who protected them from recovery. Four men of the Quaker faith and 34 African American former slaves stood against the Maryland plantation owner and his son; the posse that came with them had fled at the start of the resistance. In the end it was the plantation owner's life that was lost. The events that followed the resistance divided the nation and less than ten years later the North and South were at WAR!

The self-guided museum provides fascinating evidence of the resistance; bibliographies of the persons and the locations of the Underground Railroad Stations are presented through the collective efforts of local historians. The information is well documented in an easy to follow educational format.

The Christiana Underground Railroad Center at Historic Zercher's Hotel is an authentic site recognized by The National Park Service/ U. S. Department of Interior's Underground Railroad Network to Freedom Program.

The museum and monument are handicapped accessible and open for visitation between 9 AM and 4 PM Monday through Friday and by appointment over the weekend. Please telephone 610.593.5171 or 610.665.2275 for appointments and directions. Educational programs are encouraged and bus tours welcome.

A complimentary brochure is available in advance of your visit with introductory educational information and a map to guide your bus, cycle group or family vehicle to the landmarks associated with the Christiana Resistance.


  • Accessible
  • On-site Parking

Christiana Underground Railroad Center

Historic Zerchers Hotel, 11 Green Street, Christiana, PA 17509

  • PHONE: (610) 593-5171
  • FAX: (717) 665-3336