The Goodridge Freedom House and Underground Railroad Museum
The Crispus Attucks Association of York, PA
The Dempwolf Connection
Crispus Attucks Association became
owner of the stately Colonial Revival
House in 1993 thru the efforts of Robert
Pullo, Bobby Simpson and William Lee
Smallwood. Their vision to create a
museum that details the life and
accomplishments of William C.
Goodridge, an Afro-American business
man who successfully operated a store and
other businesses on York’s Centre Square
before & during the American Civil War.
Though several structures around York are
known to serve on The Underground
Railroad, only 2 are conclusively identified
by the National Park Service; one is
Goodridge Freedom House. Pennsylvania Historic Museum Commission placed a marker at 123
East Philadelphia Street identifying this prominence. Goodridge moved from York in 1866 to
Michigan, where he died several years later.
In 1897, Reinhardt Dempwolf acquired the Goodridge site. A partner with brother J. A.
Dempwolf’s architectural firm, Reinhardt experienced the fine styles of old world architecture
while a student in Paris and on a European tour. He recalled striking structures from this
experience, and crafted flavorful architecture when returning to York. The latter 19
was a boom time for York – now being a City for 10 years, and experiencing radical growth.
Reinhardt extensively renovated the extant
property at 123 East Philadelphia Street
from a seemingly rustic late Colonial type
rural dwelling into a fine Townhome in
prominence with the new Golden Oak
sector of an emerging Downtown York. As
many structures of the Dempwolf firm took
on attributes of Queen Anne, Romanesque,
and Eastlake design, Reinhardt’s domicile
amassed the features of The Lamps of
Architecture and fine design, reflecting late
Georgian, Greek and Colonial motifs in the
appointments of the home. Using
re-purposed pieces of York properties from
the early-to-late period Colonial structures being razed for Dempwolf Commissions, he