Harriet Tubman’s BirthplacePart of the 100 Things to Do Between the Bridge and the Beach series
Every American child learns about Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad in elementary school. But how many people know that she was born and raised and did her rescuing on the Eastern Shore? Just a few miles from Cambridge in Dorchester County, in the Bucktown district is a wayside marker identifying the place (plantation) where Harriet Tubman was born. There’s a pullout for a car or bus so that one can stop, read the marker and take in the landscape which is largely unchanged since Harriet’s birth in 1820.
The marker reads:
1820 to 1913
The “Moses of her people,” Harriet Tubman of the Bucktown district found freedom for herself and some three hundred other slaves whom she led north. In the Civil War she served the Union Army as a nurse, scout and spy.”
Most of the local historians believe that Harriet Tubman (born Araminta Ross) was born on this farm and lived in this region of Dorchester County before she escaped slavery and began assisting others in escaping to the free northern regions through the Underground Railroad.
When Harriet was about twelve years old, she was in the Bucktown Store (still stands a few miles up the road) when a farm overseer threw a 2 lb. weight at a slave boy and missed. The 2 lb. weight hit Harriet in the head rendering her unconscious with a severe concussion. That injury is believed to have led to seizures and vivid dreams which she experienced all her life.
In 1849, when her master died and she feared she’d be sold, Tubman escaped with her two brothers, but soon returned. Shortly after that return, Tubman escaped for good. She used the Underground Railroad for assistance. For eleven years she returned to the Eastern Shore of Maryland and helped the rest of her family and many other slaves escape to freedom using the same Underground Railroad.
Today, the region is in the process of getting a National Park dedicated to Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad. The visitor center for the park will be near this birthplace.
WEBSITES ABOUT HARRIET TUBMAN
FOR MORE INFO ON THIS SITE
Dorchester County – 38.458940, -76.048434
Address: Greenbriar Road, Cambridge, MD 21613
contact the Dorchester County Tourism Office
100 Things to Do Between the Bridge and the Beach
Every year millions of people cross a bridge to travel to the Atlantic Beaches on Delmarva. It may be the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel or a bridge over the Delaware Canal. They may be headed to Ocean City, Chincoteague, Rehoboth, Bethany, Dewey or Assateague, but most don’t know about the fabulous sites and attractions they are passing by. This series offers 100 fun things you can do between the Bridge and the Beach encouraging visitors to pull off the highway, take a day trip, and widen your vacation scope of activities – or make the Eastern Shore a destination when you’re not headed for the beach.
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