Surwill, Stanley – 1997


Source: Rockford Register Star March 25, 1997

Blakeley, Peter

A former slave, came to Rockford in 1865, at age 20 and a Civil War veteran was a native of Charleston, SC where he had run an underground railroad in 1861.  He gained his freedom from slavery in the 1863 Emancipation Proclamation. Was the butter and vegetable man for the people on National Ave. Grandfather of Harriet Blakely 5 children born to Peter and Hattie Blakely, first home at 715 George St., Later called Woodlawn Ave.
Source: Nuggets of History Summer, 1985