Miller Grove bottle


Miller Grove bottle


Antiquities; Bottles; African Americans


Photograph of a bottle found at the Miller Grove settlement, established in the early 1800s by a group of freed slaves in Pope County, Illinois. African American settlements were not rare at this time in southernmost Illinois; however, it is fascinating that these communities continued to be established so close to the slave states Illinois bordered in the 19th century: Missouri and Kentucky. Tragically, the kidnapping of free African Americans in this region to gain profit by selling them into slavery was common in this area, yet these communities continued to thrive. For this reason, many scholars have revised their earlier assumptions about the Underground Railroad in southern Illinois and are starting to uncover clues about these African American communities’ involvement in the Underground Railroad.


Educating with Evidence (2017). Using Artifacts as Evidence: African Americans and the Miller Grove, Illinois Settlement.
Southern Illinois University: Carbondale, IL

Original Format





“Miller Grove bottle,” SCRC Virtual Museum at Southern Illinois University's Morris Library, accessed January 29, 2023,


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