John R. Tallentire

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John Rubie Tallentire was a Methodist minister and also a conductor on the Underground Railroad in Ashland, Ohio.

Tallentire was born on March 15, 1807, in England. In 1826, he migrated to the United States of America, where he became a Methodist minister. He was a minister at churches in Maryland, Pennsylvania, and South Carolina. Circa 1840, he became the minister of a Methodist church in Ashland, Ohio. Upon arriving in Ashland, Tallentire actively assisted fugitive slaves in gaining their freedom. He worked closely with Robert Wilson, a fellow conductor. Wilson routinely transported runaways from his home near Loudonville, Ohio to Tallentire's home near Ashland. Tallentire remained active in the Methodist Church until his death on September 24, 1891.

Tallentire represents the growing tensions over slavery between Northerners and Southerners during the early nineteenth century. While many Northern states had provisions outlawing slavery, runaway slaves did not necessarily gain their freedom upon arriving in a free state. Federal law permitted slaveowners to reclaim their runaway slaves. Some slaves managed to escape their owners on their own, while others sometimes received assistance from sympathetic Northerners, such as Tallentire.

See Also


  1. Buchanan, A.M. Letter. 7 September 1894. The Wilbur H. Siebert Underground Railroad Collection. The Ohio History Connection. Columbus, OH.