A stunning bronze sculpture by Chicago artist Preston Jackson now graces the main lobby of the Lakeshore Campus at 33 N. Genesee St. in Waukegan.

The sculpture, titled “Passages to Freedom,” depicts a man, woman and child fleeing to a safe stop on the Underground Railroad. Mr. Jackson researched the subject by reading a history of the Underground Railroad in Lake County by the late James Dorsey, a sociology professor at CLC.

At the unveiling of the sculpture, Mr. Jackson explained his composition this way: “We see a family trying to reach the next safe stop. We see doorways and boat frames and swamps symbolized in the sculpture. These objects referenced the means of transport, the hardships endured and the effort that it took to reach freedom.”

The College of Lake County commissioned the sculpture using proceeds from sales of art work in the college’s Robert T. Wright Community Gallery of Art and from the gift shop, ARTcetera.

Speaking about the choice of Preston Jackson for the commission, gallery curator Steven T. Jones said, “Preston Jackson is an amazingly prolific artist and his work is varied and wide-ranging, often examining our collective past and present in an historical and philosophical sense. We thought he was a terrific choice to create a major piece for the Lakeshore Campus, and he was very excited about doing it.”

Further reading about the Underground Railroad in Lake County:

Learning Smart IV, Lake County and the Underground Railroad. - PDF

To view the Preston Jackson sculpture, the CLC Lakeshore campus hours are:

  • Monday -Thursday: 7:30 a.m.-10 p.m.
  • Friday: 7:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
  • Saturday: 8 a.m.-1:30 p.m.

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College of Lake County, 19351 West Washington Street, Grayslake, IL 60030-1198    (847) 543-2000