River Roads to Freedom Fugitive Slave Notices and Sheriff Notices Found in Illinois Sources - Helen C. Tregillis. The Tennessee and Cumberland Rivers were major thoroughfares for the Underground Railroad which had waystations in Illinois. Although Illinois was admitted to the Union as a free state (1818), it passed laws which made it risky for a runaway slave to be found within its borders. Advertisements were placed in Illinois newspapers by owners from Kentucky, Alabama, Tennessee, and Virginia in search of runaways, as well as by Illinois residents who had found runaways that they wanted claimed. While the slaves were black, the advertisers were predominently white, so both races are about equally represented in this volume. The notices usually give the name, age, and physical description of the runaways, and the name and addresses of the advertiser. The notices in this major new work were abstracted from fourteen Illinois newspapers for the years 1816 through 1850. (1988), 2012, 5½x8½, paper, index, 134 pp.