Iowa’s Underground Railway


From Springdale to the Gallows, from the Dred Scott claim site under the feet of the Bettendorf Bridge, to John Brown’s Underground Railway training camp, our 40-mile “Underground Railway” tour begins at the site of one of John Brown’s most famous and nationally publicized slave train crossing sites - in Davenport’s River Heritage Park.

After a tour of the nearby Antoine LeClaire House, overlooking the crossing site, our chartered bus trip travels across the Iowa prairies to:

  • The “Hoover Cabin” at West Branch, owned by a member of the Underground Railroad
  • The site of what was once John Brown’s “Maxson Farm” training camp at Springdale
  • Tipton’s Union School, visited by John Brown
  • Tipton’s Union Cemetery slave graves
  • Springdale Cemetery where the mother of Harper’s Ferry heroes, Edwin and Barclay Coppock, is buried
  • The Cedar County Historical Society Museum that owns the rocking chair used by John Brown at West Branch’s “Travelers Rest Inn.”


Before leaving Springdale, Biologist Jennifer Anderson will lead the group on a spring flower walk through Rochester Cemetery, one of Iowa’s most famous native prairies, at the height of the native shooting star bloom season.

Trip will be held Friday, May 12, from  9:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.   It leaves from River Heritage Park located on River Drive in Davenport near where Third and Fourth Streets connect.   The cost is $54 and includes a box lunch. Course No. 182065. To register call the college’s Registration Center at 563-441-4100 or 1-888-336-3907.