Elementary School Tours Underground Railroad Home

A highlight for the 4th graders at Williams Elementary School in Jonesville Michigan is a tour of the Munro House. The Munro House is the oldest house in Hillsdale County and was once a Station on the Underground Railroad. These 2 stories alone are good reasons to enjoy the tour, but other tales are told about the significance of Jonesville’s location on the Old Sauk Trail, some other early pioneers of local fame, and several relics that were found on the grounds.

The innkeeper enjoys teaching the children about their local heritage and the kids like a local field trip to a cool old house. Mixing knowledge with fun makes this the event that the fourth graders look forward to the most each year. Over a hundred kids take the tour each year in groups of 25 or so. They seem to like the walk into the tunnel, touching the cut stone walls, and imagining who or what this passageway was used for. They also get to see photographs of the secret room where runaway slaves took shelter while waiting for their opportunity to continue their journey to Canada. There is only one way in and one way out, so photos are the best way for everyone to view the hiding place.

A nominal fee buys an hour long tour of this grand house along with many interesting tales. Large groups can be done in segments over several days at mutually agreed upon days and times. Tying in the elementary school’s Civil War studies with a field trip to Munro House is a great way to get a feeling for the local history, and a fun field trip that fourth graders enjoy and appreciate.

Mike Venturini

“Life is good in Jonesville”


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