Harriet Tubman: A Captivating Story of a Brave Person

Harriet Tubman was a woman who believed in freedom for all people. She courageously risked her life to guide many slaves northward to the safety of the free states as well as into Canada. When Harriet Tubman's actions became known, a reward of $40,000 was advertised for her capture. Ultimately, the threat of punishment didn't deter this brave individual from continuing the work she so adamantly believed in.

In 1820, the life of Harriet Tubman began on a plantation in Maryland. Born a slave, she was given the name Araminta Ross. Years later, she adopted her mother's name, Harriet. Harriet's early life was full of hard work that included being a house servant and weaving as well as working in the fields. She often endured cruel treatment from the people she worked for. Harriet once suffered a terrible head injury from an overseer that caused her pain for the rest of her life. At 25, Harriet married a free man by the name of John Tubman and confessed her desire to escape to the north. Unfortunately, John Tubman didn't want to move north. So, Harriet's escape to freedom took place without her husband. One of the most significant events in Harriet Tubman's life happened in 1849 when she left her existence as a slave behind and began on a path to help others in search of freedom. The actions of Harriet Tubman would lead her to be referred to as "Moses" by the 300 plus people she rescued from their lives of slavery.

Harriet Tubman was just one of the people involved with the Underground Railroad that took shape in the early to mid-nineteenth century. The Underground Railroad was a connection of houses and other sorts of shelters that served to hide escaped slaves. The people who helped the slaves escape to the north by way of the Underground Railroad were sometimes called conductors. Many notable individuals contributed to the life saving work of the Underground Railroad. For instance, the diligent record keeping work of William Still was critical in the success of the Underground Railroad. He helped hundreds of slaves escape and for a time he held the position of chairman of the Vigilance Committee. Minister Josiah Henson escaped slavery via the Underground Railroad. In turn, he dedicated his efforts to helping former slaves lead productive lives. He also served as the inspiration for the impactful novel, Uncle Tom's Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe. Henry "Box" Brown was another famous individual who played a part in the anti-slavery movement. With the help of some individuals, Henry Brown escaped slavery in 1849 by shipping himself in a box to Philadelphia. Henry Brown's life and his mode of escape drew a lot of attention to the issue of slavery. Despite the penalties of the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850, slaves continued to escape to the north with the help of courageous individuals who believed slavery was wrong.

Harriet Tubman's significant work continued through the Civil War where she was a nurse for the Union army. She was also responsible for freeing even more slaves during that time. After the Civil War, Tubman worked for women's rights as well as other issues meaningful to her. In addition, she organized a home for the old and the poor. Harriet Tubman died in March of 1913 in Auburn, New York. Harriet Tubman's life and accomplishments occupy a place of importance in the history of our country.