Why did Harriet Tubman take the Underground Railroad?
- Harriet Tubman is the most famous Underground Railroad conductor. Over a decade she took 19 trips back to the south to guide friends and family to freedom. Every trip was a dangerous trek but it meant freedom for those she cared.
Where did the Underground Railroad have safe houses?
In the years leading up to the Civil War, the black abolitionist William Still offered shelter to hundreds of freedom seekers as they journeyed northward.
Did the Underground Railroad have houses?
These unassuming homes once played vital roles in the fight against slavery, serving as shelter for those escaping to freedom.
Where is William Still House?
This led him and his wife Letitia to move to a relatively new rowhouse on the east side of Ronaldson Street between South and Bainbridge Streets, which still stands today at 625 S. Delhi Street. The Stills occupied this house, which was an Underground Railroad Way Station, from 1850 through 1855.
Why was the Underground Railroad illegal?
After the passage of the Fugitive Slave Act as part of the Compromise of 1850 the Underground Railroad was rerouted to Canada as its final destination. The Act made it illegal for a person to help a run away, and citizens were obliged under the law to help slave catchers arrest fugitive slaves.
What was a safehouse for the Underground Railroad?
Enslaved people escaping North would often stay in “safe houses” to escape capture. These houses were owned by people, both black and white, who were sympathetic to the cause.
Where did the slaves go after the Underground Railroad?
They eventually escaped either further north or to Canada, where slavery had been abolished during the 1830s. To reduce the risk of infiltration, many people associated with the Underground Railroad knew only their part of the operation and not of the whole scheme.
How did the South react to the Underground Railroad?
Reaction in the South to the growing number of slaves who escaped ranged from anger to political retribution. Large rewards were offered for runaways, and many people eager to make money or avoid offending powerful slave owners turned in runaway slaves. The U.S. Government also got involved.
What made William still famous?
William Still is best known for his self-published book The Underground Railroad (1872) where he documented the stories of formerly enslaved Africans who gained their freedom by escaping bondage. As an abolitionist movement leader, William Still assisted hundreds of enslaved Africans to escape from slavery.
Where did Harriet Tubman live in Philly?
From the outside, 625 South Delhi Street looks like an average Philadelphia rowhouse. But in the 1850s, it was home to Underground Railroad leaders William and Letitia Still. Within the house’s narrow confines, they hid hundreds of escapees and gave well-known figures like Harriet Tubman shelter.
Did Harriet Tubman ever live in Philadelphia?
In 1820, Harriet Tubman was born in Dorchester Country, Maryland. Born a slave, she later married a free man but left him and fled to Philadelphia and freedom. She is remembered as an important conductoron the Underground Railroad. She helped many slaves escape to the North where they could be free.
Underground Railroad Safe House Discovered in Philadelphia
A contemporary street view photograph of the row home where conservationists think William Still and his wife Letitia originally lived, as captured by Google Street View. Google Maps in the public domain View from the street On their way northward, hundreds of freedom seekers sought refuge with William Still, a black abolitionist in the years preceding up to the Civil War, who provided them with food and shelter. Still’s narrow house in Philadelphia served as an important stop on the Underground Railroad, and as Meagan Flynn reports for the Washington Post, a team of preservationists believes they have finally identified the house where Still and his wife Letitia once lived.
The Philadelphia Historical Commission decided earlier this month to place a row home on South Delhi Street (originally Ronaldson Street) on the Philadelphia Register of Historic Places, which assures that the building cannot be demolished or drastically changed in the future.
A large number of nineteenth-century maps and city documents were searched through by preservationists in their pursuit of this important historic property.
Then one of the historians, Jim Duffin, stumbled upon an advertising in a newspaper from 1851 for a dressmaking company “done in the nicest manner by Letitia Still,” which revealed Letitia’s address.
- During the 1840s, Still relocated from New Jersey to Philadelphia where he began working for the Pennsylvania Anti-Slavery Society.
- Despite this, he remained engaged in the Committee at a perilous period for abolitionists, when the 1850 Fugitive Slave Act had introduced heavy sanctions for anybody found supporting freedom seekers.
- Jane Johnson and her two boys were among those who sought safety, and their dramatic narrative of escape was aired across the country.
- As they were prepared to board a boat to go from Philadelphia, Still and another abolitionist, Passermore Williamson, hurried over to Johnson and assured her that she would be able to become a free woman if she joined them on their journey.
- Williamson and Still were apprehended as a result of their courageous deeds, and the story of their exploits served to galvanize support for the abolitionist movement.
According to historianEric Foner, who wrote a letter of support for the campaign to save Still’s house, in the midst of a nationwide movement to demolish controversial Confederate monuments, it is critical to remember the importance of elevating sites that are significant to African American history.
about what aspects of our past we chose to honor and why,” says the author. History of African Americans Heritage of Cultural Values SlaveryRecommended VideosDiscoveriesSlavery
Harriet Tubman’s lost Maryland home found, archaeologists say
She’d been irritated that there had been no indication that she was anywhere near Tubman’s father, Ben Ross, and she’d wanted to know why. She saw that the profile of a woman with flowing hair who was wearing a cap that said “Liberty” developed while she was cleaning the coin. The year 1808 was written at the bottom of the page. Schablitsky believes she has located the location where Tubman lived with her parents and many siblings during her formative adolescent years before escaping servitude, according to state and federal officials who revealed the discovery on Tuesday morning.
- Her father was the owner of the edifice, which was of unknown design.
- Authorities claimed bricks, dateable fragments of 19th-century crockery, a button, a drawer handle, a pipe stem, ancient papers, and the location all pointed to the site as a potential Ben Ross cottage, according to the officials who investigated.
- on Saturday.
- It also sheds light on the role that her father, as well as the rest of her family, had in her maturation into the daring Underground Railroad conductor that she eventually became.
- Historians think that between around 1850 and 1860, Tubman made 13 visits home, smuggling 70 people out of slavery.
- Aside from her brothers and parents, who were no longer slaves but were still in danger in Maryland, she also rescued a number of other people.
- Following his freedom, Ben married his enslaved wife, Rit, and for a while housed Tubman and many of her siblings, all of whom were still slaves, in his cabin in what is now the federal Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge, south of Cambridge, Md., after purchasing her from her master.
- A lot of us believe we know all there is to know about Harriet Tubman,” says Schablitsky, an archaeologist from Maryland’s Department of Transportation’s State Highway Administration.
comprehend her not only as an elderly lady who led people to freedom, but also as a young woman who lived throughout the American Revolution.” The project began last year when the United States Fish and Wildlife Service purchased a 2,600-acre property close to Blackwater for $6 million in order to restore refuge sites that had been lost due to increasing sea levels elsewhere, according to refuge manager Marcia Pradines.
- Pradines stated that she had heard that the Ben Ross cabin may have been on the tract and that she had contacted Maryland specialists to see if an archaeologist would be interested in doing an investigation into the possibility.
- But she was well aware of the difficulties she would have in narrowing down the search area and determining if a certain place would be Ross’s.
- The region was visited by Schablitsky and her colleagues in the fall of last year, and they excavated over 1,000 test pits.
- However, when they dug, they discovered nothing.
- She began strolling down an abandoned lane with a metal detector out of desperation.
- In her words, “I started digging it out of the earth thinking I was going to retrieve something like a shotgun round.” “I couldn’t believe it when I saw the date on the calendar,” she said.
- We were on the correct track, but it “told us that we were getting closer,” says the author.
As they delved deeper into the ground last month, additional items began to emerge — chunks of brick, rusted nails, and fragments of pottery with motifs and patterns that might be dated, according to her.
“That’s when we had our.
“It was at that point that we realized this was it.
Other than that, there was nothing else.
“It is not simply one relic that indicates that we have discovered anything.
It’s the fact that there are so many components.” According to Kate Clifford Larson’s biography, “Bound for the Promised Land,” Harriet Tubman was born Araminta “Minty” Ross in 1822 outside the hamlet of Tobacco Stick, which is now known as Madison, in Dorchester County.
It was about 1808 that her parents, who were enslaved at the time, were married, which is the year the currency was minted.
It was partly under her father’s guidance that she began to work in the field full time.
Even though she was barely 5 feet tall, she was a powerful woman because of her occupation.
During an interview, Larson explained that she was able to “live with him” and “work in the woods with him.” “He was an incredible figure, as well as a dedicated parent,” she remarked.
In those woods, she learnt how to survive on her own.
He taught her things that assisted her in becoming the lady she became.” He also informed her of the existence of the Underground Railroad.
In 1844, she tied the knot with John Tubman.
She escaped the country in the fall of 1849, afraid she was going to be sold.
She returned home for Christmas in 1854 to rescue two of her brothers as well as a few other people.
They couldn’t tell their mother, Rit, because they were afraid she would cause a “uproar,” according to Larson’s account.
Ben made a point of avoiding looking at his children so that he could later claim he had not “seen” them when confronted by slave hunters.
Larson stated that he walked with his children on the first leg of their journey, one boy on each arm, as he told the story.
After a few miles, he came to a complete stop and said farewell. He waited till he couldn’t hear their footsteps any more in the dark. Harriet returned to the island three years later to see her parents.
Tubman’s father, Ben Ross, lived in a nearby town, and she had been disappointed that there had been no indication that she was anywhere near his house. She saw that the profile of a woman with flowing hair who was wearing a cap with the word “Liberty” appeared when she washed the coin. The year was 1808, and it was written at the bottom: Schablitsky believes she has located the location where Tubman lived with her parents and many siblings during her formative adolescent years before escaping servitude, according to state and federal officials who revealed her discovery on Tuesday morning.
- Her father owned the edifice, which was of unknown design.
- Authorities claimed bricks, dateable bits of 19th-century crockery, a button, a drawer handle, a pipe stem, ancient papers, and the location all pointed to the site as a potential Ben Ross cottage, according to the officials on the scene.
- on Monday morning.
- In addition, it sheds light on the role played by her father and family in her maturation into the daring Underground Railroad conductor that she eventually became.
- Using disguise and stealth, Tubman made 13 journeys home between 1850 and 1860, according to historians, rescuing 70 individuals from slavery in the process.
- She was raised by a pious patriarch who educated her about the customs of the marshy forests in which they lived and battled to keep his family together within the confines of slavery, according to historical accounts.
- As Tubman biographer Kate Clifford Larson said via email, “Think of it as a location where you grew up in a loving environment within a tight-knit community.” The terrain, according to Larson, served as her school.
“A lot of us assume we know everything.
That we don’t, and that we now have the chance to.
Marcia Pradines, refuge manager at Blackwater, explained that the project began last year when the United States Fish and Wildlife Service purchased a 2,600-acre tract next to the refuge for $6 million in order to restore protected sites that had been lost due to rising sea levels elsewhere.
‘I’m fascinated,’ Schablitsky stated.
It was possible to make some educated guesses based on older documents.
Originally, she was concerned that she might discover a slew of unconnected relics.
According to her, “We were basically coming up empty-handed.” Then I’m thinking, ‘Which city is this?'” “Can you tell me where this location is?” Because the location was frequently soggy and inaccessible, she explained that the majority of what she discovered was “dripping wet muck.” She started strolling along an ancient road with a metal detector out of desperation.
- An empty knife sheath, a shotgun shell, and finally something more were discovered.
- “It was like a lightbulb went out,” says the author.
- We were on the correct track, but it “told us that we were getting closer,” according to the report.
- They discovered additional items last month as they went deeper into the ground — fragments of brick, rusted nails, and pieces of porcelain with motifs and patterns that might be dated, according to her description.
- Then came “our.
- “It was at that point that we realized this was the end.” This is because it couldn’t possibly be any other location.
- that belonged to that era.” Eventually, she explained, the data from the records, the location, and the artifacts all added up.
It’s the fact that there are so many of them.
Born into a family of nine children, she was reared in an unfinished sweetgum log, and by the age of six had been sent out to do manual labor.
Her parents were both slaves at the time of their marriage, which was documented on the coin.
As part of her father’s instruction, she began to work in the outdoors.
Even though she was just 5 feet tall, she was a powerful woman because to her job.
During an interview, Larson explained that she was able to “live with him” and “work in the woods with him.
It was there that she learnt to interpret the night sky.
The Underground Railroad was also discussed by him with her.
In order to become Harriet Tubman, she had to move out and change her first name to Harriet.
After rescuing two of her brothers and a group of others, she returned home for Christmas in 1854.
According to Larson, the siblings were afraid their mother, Rit, would react negatively and cause a “uproar.” It wasn’t until later that they informed Ben, who had delivered meals to the group.
This would allow him to subsequently claim that he had not “seen” his children.
‘He walked with his children at the beginning of their adventure,’ Larson said, holding one boy in each arm.
Upon reaching the end of the road, he pulled over to say farewell. It took a long time for him to stop hearing their footsteps in the dark. When Harriet returned for her parents three years later, they were shocked.
The Society of Friends (Quakers) is often regarded as the first organized group to actively assist escaped enslaved persons. In 1786, George Washington expressed dissatisfaction with Quakers for attempting to “liberate” one of his enslaved servants. Abolitionist and Quaker Isaac T. Hopper established a network in Philadelphia in the early 1800s to assist enslaved persons who were on the run from slavery. Abolitionist organisations founded by Quakers in North Carolina lay the basis for escape routes and safe havens for fugitive slaves during the same time period.
What Was the Underground Railroad?
The Underground Railroad was first mentioned in 1831, when an enslaved man named Tice Davids managed to escape from Kentucky into Ohio and his master blamed a “underground railroad” for assisting Davids in his liberation. When a fugitive slave called Jim was apprehended in 1839 in Washington, the press said that the guy confessed his plan to travel north along a “underground railroad to Boston” while under torture. The Vigilance Committees, which were established in New York in 1835 and Philadelphia in 1838 to safeguard escaped enslaved persons from bounty hunters, rapidly expanded their duties to include guiding enslaved individuals on the run.
MORE INFORMATION CAN BE FOUND AT: Harriet Tubman and her fellow fugitives used the following strategies to escape through the Underground Railroad:
How the Underground Railroad Worked
Enslaved man Tice Davids fled from Kentucky into Ohio in 1831, and his master blamed a “underground railroad” for assisting Davids in his release. This was the first time the Underground Railroad was mentioned in print. In 1839, a Washington newspaper stated that an escaped enslaved man called Jim had divulged, after being tortured, his intention to go north through a “underground railroad to Boston” in order to avoid capture. After being established in New York in 1835 and Philadelphia in 1838 to safeguard fugitive enslaved individuals from bounty hunters, Vigilance Committees quickly expanded its duties to include guiding runaway slaves.
FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE READ THESE STATEMENTS.
Fugitive Slave Acts
The Fugitive Slave Acts were a major cause for many fugitive slaves to flee to Canada. This legislation, which was passed in 1793, authorized local governments to catch and extradite fugitive enslaved individuals from inside the borders of free states back to their places of origin, as well as to penalize anybody who assisted the fleeing enslaved people. Personal Liberty Laws were introduced in certain northern states to fight this, but they were overturned by the Supreme Court in 1842. The Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 was intended to reinforce the preceding legislation, which was perceived by southern states to be insufficiently enforced at the time of passage.
The northern states were still considered a danger zone for fugitives who had managed to flee.
Some Underground Railroad operators chose to station themselves in Canada and sought to assist fugitives who were arriving to settle in the country.
In many cases, Fugitive Slave Acts were the driving force behind their departure. This legislation, which was passed in 1793, authorized local governments to catch and extradite fugitive enslaved persons from inside the borders of free states back to their places of origin, as well as to penalize anybody who assisted the runaway slaves. Personal Liberty Laws were introduced in several northern states to oppose this, but they were overturned by the Supreme Court in 1842. Aiming to improve on the previous legislation, which southern states believed was being enforced insufficiently, the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 was passed.
It was still considered a risk for an escaped individual to travel to the northern states.
In Canada, some Underground Railroad operators established bases of operations and sought to assist fugitives in settling into their new home country.
In his house in Rochester, New York, former enslaved person and celebrated author Frederick Douglasshid fugitives who were assisting 400 escapees in their journey to freedom in Canada. Reverend Jermain Loguen, a former fugitive who lived in the adjacent city of Syracuse, assisted 1,500 escapees on their journey north. The Vigilance Committee was established in Philadelphia in 1838 by Robert Purvis, an escaped enslaved person who later became a trader. Josiah Henson, a former enslaved person and railroad operator, founded the Dawn Institute in Ontario in 1842 to assist fugitive slaves who made their way to Canada in learning the necessary skills to find work.
Agent,” according to the document.
John Parker was a free Black man living in Ohio who worked as a foundry owner and who used his rowboat to ferry fugitives over the Ohio River.
William Still was a notable Philadelphia citizen who was born in New Jersey to runaway slaves parents who fled to Philadelphia as children.
Who Ran the Underground Railroad?
The vast majority of Underground Railroad operators were regular individuals, including farmers and business owners, as well as preachers and religious leaders. Some affluent individuals were active, including Gerrit Smith, a billionaire who stood for president on two separate occasions. Smith acquired a full family of enslaved people from Kentucky in 1841 and freed them from their captivity. Levi Coffin, a Quaker from North Carolina, is credited with being one of the first recorded individuals to assist escaped enslaved persons.
Coffin stated that he had discovered their hiding spots and had sought them out in order to assist them in moving forward.
Finally, they were able to make their way closer to him. Coffin eventually relocated to Indiana and then Ohio, where he continued to assist fugitive enslaved individuals no matter where he was.
Abolitionist John Brown worked as a conductor on the Underground Railroad, and it was at this time that he founded the League of Gileadites, which was dedicated to assisting fleeing enslaved individuals in their journey to Canada. Abolitionist John Brown would go on to play a variety of roles during his life. His most well-known duty was conducting an assault on Harper’s Ferry in order to raise an armed army that would march into the deep south and free enslaved people at gunpoint. Ultimately, Brown’s forces were beaten, and he was executed for treason in 1859.
- The year 1844, he formed a partnership with Vermont schoolteacher Delia Webster, and the two were jailed for assisting an escaped enslaved lady and her young daughter.
- Charles Torrey was sentenced to six years in jail in Maryland for assisting an enslaved family in their attempt to flee through Virginia.
- After being apprehended in 1844 while transporting a boatload of freed slaves from the Caribbean to the United States, Massachusetts sea captain Jonathan Walker was sentenced to prison for life.
- John Fairfield of Virginia turned down the opportunity to assist in the rescue of enslaved individuals who had been left behind by their families as they made their way north.
- He managed to elude capture twice.
End of the Line
Operation of the Underground Railroad came to an end in 1863, during the American Civil War. In actuality, its work was shifted aboveground as part of the Union’s overall campaign against the Confederate States of America. Once again, Harriet Tubman made a crucial contribution by organizing intelligence operations and serving as a commanding officer in Union Army efforts to rescue the liberated enslaved people who had been freed. MORE INFORMATION CAN BE FOUND AT: Harriet Tubman led a daring Civil War raid after the Underground Railroad was shut down.
Bound for Canaan: The Epic Story of the Underground Railroad is a book about the Underground Railroad. Fergus Bordewich is a Scottish actor. A Biography of Harriet Tubman: The Road to Freedom Catherine Clinton is the first lady of the United States. Who Exactly Was in Charge of the Underground Railroad?
‘Henry Louis Gates’ is a pseudonym for Henry Louis Gates. The Underground Railroad’s History in New York is a little known fact. The Smithsonian Institution’s magazine. The Underground Railroad’s Dangerous Allure is well documented. The New Yorker is a publication dedicated to journalism.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who was Harriet Tubman?
In the United States, Harriet Tubman, née Araminta Ross, (born c. 1820 in Dorchester County, Maryland, U.S.—died March 10, 1913 in Auburn, New York) was an abolitionist who managed to escape from slavery in the South and rise to prominence before the American Civil War. As part of the Underground Railroad, which was an extensive covert network of safe homes built specifically for this reason, she was responsible for guiding scores of enslaved persons to freedom in the North. Araminta Ross was born into slavery and eventually assumed her mother’s maiden name, Harriet, as her own.
- When she was approximately 12 years old, she reportedly refused to assist an overseer in punishing another enslaved person; as a result, he hurled an iron weight that accidently struck her, causing her to suffer a terrible brain injury, which she would endure for the rest of her life.
- Tubman went to Philadelphia in 1849, allegedly on the basis of rumors that she was due to be sold.
- In December 1850, she made her way to Baltimore, Maryland, where she was reunited with her sister and two children who had joined her in exile.
- A long-held belief that Tubman made around 19 excursions into Maryland and assisted upwards of 300 individuals out of servitude was based on inflated estimates in Sara Bradford’s 1868 biography of Tubman.
- If anyone opted to turn back, putting the operation in jeopardy, she reportedly threatened them with a revolver and stated, “You’ll either be free or die,” according to reports.
- One such example was evading capture on Saturday evenings since the story would not emerge in the newspapers until the following Monday.
- It has been stated that she never lost sight of a runaway she was escorting to safety.
Abolitionists, on the other hand, praised her for her bravery.
Her parents (whom she had brought from Maryland in June 1857) and herself moved to a tiny farm outside Auburn, New York, about 1858, and remained there for the rest of her life.
Tubman spied on Confederate territory while serving with the Second Carolina Volunteers, who were under the leadership of Col.
Montgomery’s forces were able to launch well-coordinated attacks once she returned with intelligence regarding the locations of munitions stockpiles and other strategic assets.
Immediately following the Civil War, Tubman relocated to Auburn, where she began caring for orphans and the elderly, a practice that culminated in the establishment of the Harriet Tubman Home for IndigentAged Negroes in 1892.
Aside from suffrage, Tubman became interested in a variety of other issues, including the abolition of slavery.
A private measure providing for a $20 monthly stipend was enacted by Congress some 30 years after her contribution was recognized. Those in charge of editing the Encyclopaedia Britannica Jeff Wallenfeldt was the author of the most recent revision and update to this article.
Moses of Her People: Harriet Tubman and Runaway Slaves
NOTE FROM THE EDITOR: PBS has worked with historians and academics to bring fans the Mercy Street Revealed blog. Click here to read more. Originally from New York City, Kenyatta D. Berry is an experienced genealogist and lawyer with more than 15 years of expertise conducting genealogical research and writing. During law school, she spent time at the State Library of Michigan in Lansing, where she began her genealogy research. Berry, a native of Detroit, received his education at Bates Academy, Cass Technical High School, Michigan State University, and the Thomas M.
- She also co-hosts the PBS program Genealogy Roadshow.
- In the third episode: One Equal Temper, a prejudiced white guy infected with smallpox, is escorted to the quarantine tent to be treated for the disease.
- He is hurt after a struggle with a patient.
- Bryon Hale enters the tent and immediately recognizes Samuel’s knowledge of medicine and compassion for his patients.
- Charlotte recounts her experience as a fugitive slave with Samuel, and he learns more about her through Charlotte.
In the course of her voyage, she learned of Harriet Tubman, whom she subsequently met as “The Moses of Her People.” What was it about Harriet Tubman that earned her the title “The Moses of Her People?” Araminta Ross, a slave in Bucktown, Maryland, was given the name Harriet Tubman when she was born.
- 1 While in Philadelphia, Harriet collaborated with abolitionists William Still and John Brown on their respective projects.
- Harriet Tubman is well-known as a “conductor” on the Underground Railroad during the American Revolution.
- Harriet came on Hilton Head, South Carolina, in 1862 to provide assistance to Union forces fighting in the Civil War.
- 2 “Pass the bearer, Harriet Tubman.
- 3 A scene in the contraband tent Harriet worked as a nurse on Sea Island, off the coast of South Carolina, where she cared for the ill and injured without regard to race or ethnicity of those who came to her for help.
- Durrant, Acting Assistant Surgeon, was very struck by her kindness and generous attitude toward others.
“I’d want to draw your attention to Mrs.
In 1863, Col.
It was signed by President Millard Fillmore on September 18, 1850, as a supplemental modification to the Slave Act of 1793, and it became effective on October 1, 1850.
Upon capture, the putative slave would be taken before a commissioner or federal court, who would hold a short hearing before ruling on the case.
6 Following the passage of the Fugitive Slave Act, free persons of color and escaped slaves were put at danger in the United States’ northern states.
Abolitionists called these slave catchers “Kidnappers” because they kidnapped children.
She was a co-leader of the Cannon-Johnson Gang of Maryland-Delaware in the early nineteenth century, and she was a slave dealer who operated illegally.
The Reverse Underground Railroad was the name given to this phenomenon.
Patty Tubman was indicted for four murders in 1829, when she was just nine years old, when the remains of four black people, including three children, were discovered on property she owned.
She admitted to over two dozen homicides involving black abduction victims and died in prison while awaiting prosecution for her crimes.
Upon the arrival of the racist white guy, she assumes command of the smallpox tent in a manner that has never been seen before.
As a result of channeling the power and tenacity of Harriet Tubman, Charlotte transforms into a natural force at the Contraband Camp.
Berry is a writer and poet.
Wesley and Patricia W.
“Negro Americans in the Civil War: From Slavery to Citizenship” is the title of this article.
Ibid, page 107.
Ibid, page 108.
A History of the Slaveholding Republic: An Account of the United States Government’s Relations with Slavery, by Don E.
The Reverse Underground Railroad Patty Cannon is a fictional character created by Wikipedia.
Berry is an expert in her field.
Berry, a native of Detroit, received his education at Bates Academy, Cass Technical High School, Michigan State University, and the Thomas M. Cooley Law School, among other institutions. She also co-hosts the PBS program Genealogy Roadshow. Read More About Me|Read All of My Posts
Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad: how one woman saved hundreds from hell
She had managed to get away from hell. Slavery in the United States was a hellish experience characterised by bondage, racist treatment, terrorism, degrading conditions, backbreaking labor, beatings, and whippings. Harriet Tubman escaped from her Maryland farm and walked over 90 miles by herself to reach the free state of Pennsylvania, where she died in 1865. In order to make the perilous voyage, she had to go at night through woods and through streams, with little food, and dreading anybody who would gladly give her back to her masters in order to receive a reward.
Her 1849 escape from slavery was described as follows: “When I realized I had crossed the border, I glanced at my hands to check if I was the same person.” “There was such a radiance in everything.” I had the feeling that I was in heaven as the sun filtered through the trees and over the meadows.” Tubman was transferred to a region where she could live somewhat free of bondage thanks to the Underground Railroad; but, while others endured cruelty and misery, she would risk her life as the network’s most renowned conductor.
Tubman made it out of hell just to turn around and walk right back into it.
When and where was Harriet Tubman born?
Araminta Ross, Tubman’s given name, would have been put to work on her family’s plantation in Dorchester County, Maryland, practically as soon as she began to walk, according to family legend. It was the same terrible initiation to slavery that she and her eight siblings endured when they were born into it. Her rigorous outdoor job, along with long hours of domestic employment as a maid and then as a cook, resulted in her being underweight and unwell at times. The little Minty, like millions of other slaves in America, became all-too familiar with the awful physical and mental torture she suffered at the hands of her owners.
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Minty’s harsh upbringing resulted in a fervent Christian faith, which she developed as a result of hearing Bible tales read to her by her mother, as well as extraordinary strength, courage, and a desire to put herself in danger in order to save others. These characteristics helped her so effectively in the Underground Railroad, yet they almost resulted in her death when she was a little girl. Once, as Minty was on her way to get supplies from a dry goods store, she found herself stuck between an overseer who was looking for a slave who had fled his property without permission and the slave’s pursuing master.
What was the Underground Railroad?
The term does not allude to genuine trains that went up and down the length of America in tunnels (at least not in the early nineteenth century), but rather to a system of clandestine routes that were designed to assist runaway slaves in reaching the free states of the North or Canada. In order to escape discovery, guides guided them down the circuitous routes, which frequently required trudging into the woods, crossing rivers, and climbing mountains to reach their destination. Although it was not always the case, a route may have involved conveyance, such as boats or carts.
- It was all done in secret, thus the term “underground,” and it made use of jargon from the booming railway industry.
- It was common for those participating – which included everyone from runaway slaves to rich white abolitionists and church officials – to congregate in small groups.
- ‘vigilance committees’ formed established in the bigger cities of the North, such as New York, Boston, and Philadelphia, to support the railroad.
- It struck Minty in the head, knocking her out cold and leaving her in a pool of blood.
- These remained constant throughout her life (although she claimed them to be premonitions from God).
- There was no reprieve from the horrendous conditions as the years passed, yet all of Minty’s hours of hard labor had given her a surprising amount of strength for her small five-foot body.
Despite the fact that she became Harriet Tubman in approximately 1844 – after marrying a free black man called John Tubman and choosing to use her mother’s first name – it would be another five years before she made her first steps toward freedom.
How did Harriet Tubman escape from slavery?
What makes Tubman’s escape from slavery even more remarkable is that she had to accomplish it twice before she was successful. When Mary left the plantation with two of her brothers on September 17, 1849, Harry and Ben had second thoughts and returned to the plantation with her mother and father. Instead of continuing without them, Tubman made sure they returned before attempting a second time to save her life. The 90-mile trek could have taken her anywhere from one to three weeks if she had done it on foot.
- As a result, in 1850, she returned to Maryland to pick up her niece Kessiah and her husband, as well as their two kids, and bring them back to Pennsylvania.
- (some accounts say she went as many as 19 times).
- It is estimated that she personally freed roughly 300 slaves – including some of her brothers and their families, as well as her own parents – and gave instructions to dozens of others in the process.
- An advertising for the ‘Liberty Line’ in 1844, which was a thinly veiled allusion to the Underground Railroad, and which promised “seats free, regardless of race,” is seen below.
- It only grew more perilous after the passage of the Fugitive Slave Act, which made it possible for runaway slaves to be apprehended in the North and returned to their original owners.
- As a result, Tubman had to find a way to get to Canada, which was under British control.
When Tubman was a conductor, her colleague William Still remarked, “Great anxieties were expressed for her safety, yet she appeared to be completely devoid of personal dread.” With her success in exploiting and growing the network to transport escaped slaves to safety, abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison dubbed Tubman the ‘Moses of her people’ for her efforts.
She would frequently travel during the winter, when the nights were longer, and would leave with her ‘passengers’ on a Saturday evening – since runaway notices would not appear in newspapers until the following Monday – in order to avoid being discovered.
“Either you’ll be free or you’ll die,” she declared emphatically.
‘General Tubman’ was contacted before to his failed 1859 raid on Harpers Ferry in the hopes of igniting a slave insurrection, and it is said that he wanted her to take part in the attack as a member of the armed forces.
Seward was so impressed with Tubman’s work that she purchased a small plot of land near Auburn, New York – where she lived with her elderly parents, whom she had rescued during one of her final journeys – from her friend and admirer.
On the Underground Railroad, did coded songs aid people in their attempts to elude enslavement and find freedom? In connection with the Underground Railroad, there is a widespread idea that songs had hidden messages in the lyrics that either assisted slaves in finding their path to freedom or served as a warning. To summarize: The expression “follow the Drinkin’ Gourd” actually refers to the North Star, “Wade in the Water” is an instruction to hide, and the phrase “I am bound for Canaan” could be used by a slave to announce his or her intention to flee and seek refuge in Canada, which would serve as their Canaan in the new world.
Tubman would subsequently vary the speed of the song in order to shift the meaning of the message.
According to a related notion, specific patterns in quilts were created in order to symbolize secret instructions, however this theory has also been called into doubt.
In spite of this, songs formed an important part of the culture of those in bondage, whether employed as prayers (known as’spirituals’), to provide a rhythm to their work, or as oral history in a society where many people were illiterate.
Harriet Tubman and the American Civil War
Although the Underground Railroad came to a close with the outbreak of the American Civil War in 1861, it did not mark the end of Tubman’s heroic efforts on the Underground Railroad. She worked in the Union Army as a cook, laundress, and nurse, caring for wounded troops and escaped slaves, who were referred to as ‘contrabands,’ without regard for her own well-being. Tubman led a troop of scouts into Confederate territory after Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, laying the groundwork for the abolition of slavery.
Because of the intelligence she acquired, Colonel James Montgomery was able to launch a deadly attack on enemy fortifications, making her the first woman to command an armed assault in the United States history.
More than 750 slaves were liberated during the uprising.
What were Harriet Tubman’s actions during the American Civil War?
Tubman’s heroic actions did not come to a stop when the American Civil War erupted in 1861, despite the fact that the Underground Railroad was effectively closed down at that time. She served in the Union Army as a cook, laundress, and nurse, caring for wounded troops and fleeing slaves, who were referred to as ‘contrabands,’ and never once considered her personal safety while on the job. After Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, establishing the groundwork for the end of slavery, Tubman led a team of scouts into Confederate territory, utilizing the talents she had honed as a railroad operator.
During the attack on plantations in South Carolina on June 2, 1863, Tubman escorted Union steamboats along the Combahee River. This resulted in the liberation of more than 750 slaves
- Although the Underground Railroad came to a close with the outbreak of the American Civil War in 1861, it did not mark the end of Tubman’s heroic exploits. She worked in the Union Army as a cook, laundress, and nurse, caring for wounded troops and escaped slaves, who were referred to as ‘contrabands,’ without regard for her personal safety. In 1863, following Lincoln’s proclamation of slavery’s abolition, Tubman led a band of scouts into Confederate territory, employing the abilities she had learned as a train operator. Because of the intelligence she acquired, Colonel James Montgomery was able to launch a deadly attack on enemy fortifications, making her the first woman to command an armed assault. Tubman escorted Union steamboats down the Combahee River on June 2, 1863, in order to plunder plantations in South Carolina. More than 750 slaves were released during this period.
If her deeds and accomplishments aren’t enough of a testament, these final remarks eloquently depict a lady who has dedicated her life to others while seeking no recognition or glory for herself. A lady who rose to prominence in the United States while remaining anonymous. A lady who was able to escape the misery of being a slave and went on to assist others in doing the same has been honored. “Most of what I have done and suffered in the service of our cause has been done and suffered in public, and I have received much encouragement at every step of the way,” Frederick Douglass, Tubman’s friend and revered abolitionist, wrote to Tubman about her time as a conductor on the Underground Railroad.
“I have worked throughout the day; you have worked during the night.”
Jonny Wilkes is a freelance writer specialising in history
This article was first published in History Revealed in January 2017 and has since been updated.
The Underground Railroad in Indiana
Mary Schons contributed to this article. The 20th of June, 2019 is a Thursday. For 30 years before to the American Civil War, enslaved African Americans utilized the Underground Railroad to gain their freedom, a network known as the Underground Railroad (1861-1865). The “railroad” employed a variety of routes to transport people from slave-supporting states in the South to “free” states in the North and Canada. Sometimes abolitionists, or persons who were opposed to slavery, were responsible for organizing routes for the Underground Railroad.
- There was a great deal of activity on the Underground Railroad in the states that bordered the Ohio River, which served as a boundary between slave and free states.
- Not everyone in Indiana supported the emancipation of enslaved people.
- Because Indiana was a part of the Underground Railroad, its narrative is the tale of all states that had a role in it.
- However, while some people did have secret chambers in their homes or carriages, the great bulk of the Underground Railroad consisted of individuals surreptitiously assisting slaves who were attempting to flee slavery in whatever manner they were able to.
- The persons that were enslaved were referred to as “passengers.” “Stations” were private residences or commercial establishments where passengers and conductors seeking freedom might take refuge.
- If a new owner supported slavery, or if the residence was revealed to be a station on the Underground Railroad, passengers and conductors were obliged to locate a new station or move on somewhere.
- Only a small number of people kept records of this hidden activity in order to protect homeowners and others seeking freedom who required assistance.
People who were found assisting those who had fled slavery faced arrest and imprisonment.
No one knows exactly how the Underground Railroad received its name, nor does anybody care.
Another version of the story assigns the name to a freedom-seeker who was apprehended in Washington, D.C., in the year 1839.
A third narrative connects the name to an enslaved man called Tice Davids, who made the decision to pursue his freedom in 1831, according to the legend.
Unfortunately, there was no boat available to take us over the river.
His enslaver returned to Kentucky without him, claiming that Davids had vanished while traveling on a “underground railroad.” To put it another way, the name “Underground Railroad” had been widely accepted by the mid-1840s.
According to Article 6 of the Northwest Ordinance, slavery was prohibited north of the Ohio River; however, the rule did not apply to enslaved persons who were already residing in the region.
Slavery was a common feature of life in the Northwest Territories at the time.
Indiana was established as a territory in 1800, with future United States PresidentWilliam Henry Harrison serving as the area’s first territorial governor.
Harrison and his followers also believed that permitting slavery in Indiana would increase the state’s population.
Their petition was refused by Congress.
The “contract holder” has the authority to determine how long the victim must be held in slavery.
When Indiana became a state in 1816, its stateConstitutioncontained wording that was comparable to Article 6 of the Northwest Ordinance—new enslaved persons were not permitted, but existing enslaved people were allowed to continue in their current state of enslavement.
The term “slave” was still used to describe some Hoosiers as late as the 1820 census.
(White people were exempt from this requirement.) Indiana’s 1851 Constitution prohibited blacks from voting, serving in the military, or testifying in any trial in which a white person was accused of a crime.
All three pathways eventually went to Michigan and subsequently to Canada, although they took different routes.
Lewis Harding said in a 1915 history of Decatur County, Indiana, that the county was a spot where three roads came together after crossing the Ohio River at separate points in the county.
assisted the escaped slaves in every way imaginable,” he adds, using the injunction as an example.
As Harding says, “the sympathies of the majority of the residents of this nation were with the escaped slave and his rescuer.” Historians now feel that the path to independence resembled a spider’s web rather than three independent pathways to freedom.
While traveling, they had to avoid organized networks of patrolmen who grabbed freedom-seekers and held them hostage for ransom money.
Known as the “President of the Underground Railroad,” Coffin is credited for bringing slavery to Indiana in 1826.
In his memoir, Reminiscences, Coffin tells the story of two girls who escaped Tennessee and sought refuge with their grandparents in the Indiana county of Randolph.
They were not, however, destined to live in safety.
When the alarm went off, it attracted the majority of the settlement’s black people together in a single location.
Unknown to them, an uncle of the two girls rode up on his horse at the same time the enslaver was being held at bay by the grandmother’scorn knife.
They were not given any authorization to enter the premises or search for items, according to him.” The uncle remained at the doorway for as long as he could to continue the dispute with the enslaver.
According to the account, the girls were disguised as guys and sneaked past the crowd to where two horses were waiting for them.
The girls were able to make it to Coffin’s residence without incident.
Eliza Harris’s Indefatigable Escape Indiana is the scene of one of the most famous slave escapes in history, which took place in the state of Indiana.
Harris made the snap decision to flee to Canada with her infant son in tow.
There were no bridges, and there was no way for a raft to get through the thick ice.
Moving from one ice floe to another while carrying her child, she eventually made it to the other end.
Eliza, in fact, is the name of the character who travels across the icy Ohio.
In order to recover from their ordeal, Harris and her child traveled to Levi Coffin’s Fountain City residence.
In 1854, Levi and Catherine Coffin were on a visit to Canada with their daughter when a woman approached Catherine and introduced herself.
God’s blessings on you!” It was Eliza Harris, who had safely migrated to Chatham, Ontario, Canada, when the call came through.
Illustration provided courtesy of The Library of Congress is a federal government institution that collects and organizes information.
Examine the list of locations to see if any are in your immediate vicinity.
But it was carried out according to a completely different set of rules.
Levi Coffin’s Reminiscences, published in 1880abet Help is a verb that refers to assisting in the commission of a crime.
abolitionist A person who is opposed to slavery as a noun.
authority Making choices is the responsibility of a nounperson or organization.
The payment of a fine or the performance of a contract under the terms of an agreement constitutes a bond, which is an unenforceable agreement.
cattle Andoxen are nouncows.
The American Civil War The American Civil War was fought between the Union (north) and the Confederacy between 1860 and 1865.
conductor A person who escorted slaves to safety and freedom on the Underground Railroad was known as a guide.
The House of Representatives and the Senate are the two chambers of the United States Congress.
convictVerb to find someone guilty of committing a criminal offense.
Municipality is a type of political entity that is smaller than a state or province, but often larger than a city, town, or other municipality.
defendantNounperson or entity who has been accused of committing a crime or engaging in other misconduct.
economy The production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services are all referred to as a system.
enslave acquainted with the verbto completely control Adjectivewell-known.
forbidVerb to forbid or prohibit something.
fugitive a noun or an adjective that has gotten away from the law or another limitation a system or order established by a country, a state, or any other political body; government Harriet Beecher Stowe was an American writer and abolitionist activist who lived from 1811 to 1896.
Nouna huge, flat sheet of ice that is floating on the surface of a body of water.
labor is a noun that refers to work or employment.
Throughout the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, the term negronoun was frequently used to refer to persons of African descent.
During the American Civil War, the North was comprised of states that backed the United States (Union).
A portion of the modern-day states of Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota belonged to the Northwest Territory at the time of its creation.
The Ohio River is the greatest tributary of the Mississippi River, with a length of 1,580 kilometers (981 miles).
passenger A runaway slave seeking freedom on the Underground Railroad is referred to as a noun.
Requests are made verbally, and are frequently accompanied by a document signed by the respondents.
prominentAdjectivethat is significant or stands out.
recover from an accident or strenuous activityVerb to recover from an injury or rigorous activity repeal a verb that means to overturn or reject something that was previously guaranteed rouse a verb that means to awaken or make active.
Slavery is a noun that refers to the act of owning another human being or being owned by another human being (also known as servitude).
South During the American Civil War, the Confederate States of America (Confederacy) was backed or sympathized with by a huge number of states.
Supreme CourtNounin the United States, the highest judicial authority on questions of national or constitutional significance.
terminology A noungroup of terms that are used in a specialized subject area.
Nounland that is protected against invaders by an animal, a person, or the government.
the southern hemisphere Geographic and political territory in the south-eastern and south-central sections of the United States that includes all of the states that sided with the Confederacy during the American Civil War.
unconstitutional Adjective that refers to a violation of the laws of the United States Constitution.
9th President of the United States of America, William Henry HarrisonNoun (1773-1841). (1841). word-of-mouth Informal communication, also known as rumor or rumor mill. NounA formal order issued by a government or other authoritative body.
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