Topeka’s historic gem: the Ritchie House stands tall

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Topeka’s crown jewel for the oldest building is the Ritchie House, a symbol of resilience and activism. Constructed in 1856 by John and Mary Jane Ritchie, this limestone house wasn’t just a residence; it played a pivotal part in the Underground Railroad.

The abolitionist Ritchie family provided sanctuary to freedom seekers escaping slavery in the South. Its sturdy construction reflects the era’s style, while its secret compartments and escape routes whisper tales of courage and resistance. Today, the Ritchie House serves as a museum, educating visitors about the Underground Railroad and the Ritchie family’s role in the fight for freedom.

– Erin McIntyre with AI assist*

*As a company focused on innovative tools to build community, we embrace AI as an editorial resource to help us create relevant content. Every article is reviewed and modified by one of our editors to ensure accuracy.