A National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom and Civil War: The Home Front featured site is located in the Putnam Historic District, the Stone Academy is one of the oldest and arguably the most historic building in Muskingum County. Constructed in 1809 by Dr. Increase Mathews, Levi Whipple, and Ebenezer Buckingham, the building was designed to serve as the new state capital building. Across the river in Zanesville, then a separate and rival community, John McIntire and others construct a building of their own with the same goal. Zanesville was selected and served as the capital of Ohio from 1810 to 1812.
The Stone Academy functioned as a public building until it was converted to a private residence in 1840. In the 1830’s it was the center of abolitionist activity in Putnam. The Ohio Anti-Slavery Society held state conventions in the building in 1835 and 1839. On both occasions violence erupted when mobs of pro-slavery Zanesville “Tuckahoes” disrupted the proceedings.
The building also served as a station on the Underground Railroad. The museum’s most popular exhibit highlights a hidden trap door under the staircase that accessed a craw-space under the building where the run-a-way slaves were hidden.
Another popular exhibit features books written by well-know author, actress, and activist Elizabeth Robins who lived in the building in the 1870’s.
Other highlights include historic portraits of John and Sarah McIntire and others, several wall murals, Allwine and Bailey furniture, pottery, Indian artifacts, an historical timeline of Putnam, an exhibit featuring Zanesville’s famous Y-Bridge, the bridge tender’s building and light posts from the old Sixth Street Bridge, a tribute to John Glenn, a large model and pictures of the Big Muskie, and many other items illustrating the history and culture of Muskingum County.
115 Jefferson Street
Zanesville, Ohio 43701
Hours: Wednesday – Friday 1:00pm – 4:00pm & Saturday 10:00am-4:00pm (May – September). Hours subject to change. Open year round by appointment.
Admission: Adults: $5.00 Students: $1.00
Website: www.muskingumcountyhistory.com Email: firstname.lastname@example.org