New York Cultural Heritage Tourism Network

Freethought Trail

Freethought Trail

PO Box 664
Amherst NY 14226

Category: Historic Tours, Sites and Markers /Museums & Related Organizations / Women's Rights and Heritage

Description: The Freethought Trail is a collection of marked and unmarked locations in west-central New York important to the history of radical reform, including such causes as freethought, abolition, sex reform, womanís rights, and anarchism. Sites can be browsed by location, name, cause, and type. Each site is described in interpretive text and photos, and directions are provided from one Freethought Trail location to another, so curious visitors can plan their own paths among the Trailís 59 sites. Cellphone and smartphone audio tours are available.

Our Story: During the 19th century, west-central New York was what southern California would become in the 20th: the nationís laboratory for social experimentation. Credit the Erie Canal. Opened in 1825, the Canal flooded the area between Rochester and Syracuse with newcomers, some seeking prosperity, others pursuing a religious or social ideal. Called the Burned-over District for its religious ferment, the region also hosted secular radicalisms. The Freethought Trail celebrates this forgotten history.

Freethought Trail Freethought Trail

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