Jonathan Walker became a national hero in 1844 when he was tried and sentenced as a slave stealer following an attempt to assist seven runaway slaves find freedom. He was branded on the right hand with the letters SS signifying "Slave Stealer."
He became an ardent abolitionist in the years before the Civil War. At the wars end he moved to Muskegon and lived the peaceful life of a fruit farmer. Upon his death in 1878 he was buried with full honors in a ceremony attended by 5,000 people. A unique marker in downtown Muskegon marks his final resting place. For a free detailed account contact the Muskegon County Museum at 888-843-5661.