Much of the information we have about the Underground Railroad in Sodus Point comes from oral tales handed down from generation to generation. Here are a collection of four poems about the Featherly House in Sodus Point. We now know this house as the Silver Waters B&B which was owned by David Rogers during the time of the Underground Railroad and in 1976 it was owned by the Featherly family. These poems were published as part of the Sodus Bicentennial Tour in 1976 as a Project of the Class of 1979 of the Sodus Central School under the direction of David E. Cooper English Department. It was published by Urban/Rural School Development Program. Please note the references to tunnels, bounty hunters, secret rooms and ships in the bay to Canada.
Escape to Freedom
The Featherly House is what I’m called nowadays,
But in my time, I was a haven for slaves.
To different places they would run
From southern states to northern ones,
Making a long and risky trip
Hoping to escape the painful whip.
The sound of guards coming near
Searching for runaways hiding here.
Of horses’ footsteps all were afraid,
But safe were they, with my aid.
Through my tunnel and on their way,
Aboard a ship, across the Bay.
Proud to have served the North
Helping slaves be free.
Passing through my walls
At the home of Featherly.
Hiding them in cellars
During most of the day,
But when the skies turned dark,
Through my secret part to the Bay.
They couldn’t have escaped without me,
Because, when I hid a slave,
The South didn’t know where to look,
They were in my secret cave.
The Voice of the Slave
In here, quick, so they don’t see
The escape we’re trying to make.
We’ll get shipped off to Canada
By the large Ontario Lake.
We’ve got to be quiet and careful
We’ve found our chance to be free.
Our lives right now are worthless,
And that isn’t how they should be.
After crawling through this tunnel
That was made for us who slaved.
We’ll count our blessings every day:
Praise God! Praise God! We’re saved.
ROUTE TO FREEDOM
come through my doors and you will see
a place where Negroes once did flee
feel the excitement inside me
pursuers search for slaves, wanting to be free
comes a loud pound at my door
quickly, hide beneath my floor
today, I am proud to say
I was a car on the Underground Railway