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In the intricate tapestry of the Underground Railroad's history, the lantern emerges as a beacon of safe passage. It represented more than just a light in the dark; it was a symbol of hope and safety for those seeking freedom. Hidden in plain sight, these lanterns served as clandestine signals, indicating a sanctuary for escaping slaves. This subtle yet powerful method of communication was crucial in the perilous journey of countless individuals striving for liberation. The Lantern Network draws inspiration from the Underground Railroad, symbolizing guidance and safety. Today, the organization extends this beacon of hope to young Black Americans, encouraging bravery and supporting their quest for economic freedom. Discover more about The Lantern Network's role in aiding these young adults and learn how you can contribute to their journey as a Lantern Lighter.


*Photo credit detailed below

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Born into slavery, Tubman escaped and subsequently made some 13 missions to rescue approximately 70 enslaved people, including family and friends, using the network of antislavery activists and safe houses known as the Underground Railroad.

About this art:  Harriet Tubman is a piece of digital artwork by Mark Fredrickson which was uploaded on June 17th, 2017


The Lantern Network is rich with symbolism from The Underground Railroad. Our logo comprises the railroad crossings that were embedded into quilts to communicate to runaway slaves.


The flame inside of the railroad crossing on our logo symbolizes illumination and hope. And most importantly, there is a play on the network that existed to assist escaping enslaved people along their journey to freedom. There was an underground network of individuals and small organizations that provided resources back then.


Today, The Lantern Network continues to create a National and evident network of sponsoring corporations, higher-education colleges and universities, influential individuals, and other organizations to construct a life-changing network. This network is providing inroads to lighting the path to economic freedom for young Black Americans.

TLN Logo
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The freedom stairway is 100 steps leading from the Ohio River to the Rankin house in Ripley, Ohio, a station on the Underground Railroad. 


In 1829, John Rankin built this brick house overlooking the Ohio River above Ripley, and at night the Rankins kept a lighted lantern in the window to serve as a beacon to guide runaway slaves across the river and up the hillside to safety. 


A lantern, quilts and certain songs were signals used at the safe houses all along the Underground Railroad to indicate that it was safe for freedom seekers to approach the house. Rankin’s house was one of the most known houses that housed hundreds of slaves. 


The partners and supporters of The Lantern Network are carrying today’s lanterns that will guide our young people of color to a life of new freedoms through mentoring and life-skills training that will INSPIRE them to move from where they are to a better place, GUIDE them to economic freedom, and PROPEL them to achieve their goals. 


The Freedom Stairs.  One hundred steps to freedom.

In 1829 John Rankin built this brick house overlooking the Ohio River above Ripley, and at night the Rankins kept a lighted lantern in the window.

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