Preston in Caroline County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
The Underground Railroad
Seed of War
Among the factors that contributed to the coming of the Civil War was the increasing animosity between Southerners and Northerners over the issue of slavery. The operation of the Underground Railroad to help slaves escape to the free North and Canada, which was supported by Northern anti-slavery societies, was a sharp thorn in the sides of slaveholders.
Two major "stations" on the Underground Railroad were located near Preston. Local Quakers, long opposed to slavery, operated one and Harriet Tubman and her parents, Benjamin and Harriet Ross, ran the other. The success of these and other stations in Maryland led to the calling of local and statewide slaveholder conventions, which denounced the North for harboring fugitive slaves. Maryland slave owners were further enraged when these two stations were exposed in 1857-58, but most of their operators, including Tubman, escaped to Northern states and Canada.
On the other hand, Northern abolitionists were angered when a captured "conductor," Sam Green, received a ten-year prison sentence. The respective animosities of slaveholders and abolitionists, increased by the Underground Railroad, finally found expression in armed conflict in 1861.
(caption of picture, lower right): Harriet Tubman may have crossed Hunting Creek at or near Linchester Mill
(caption of picture, center top): Linchester Mill had changed very little from the period of Harriet Tubman when this photo was taken, circa 1897.
(caption of map on right): Possible Underground Railroad route between the Choptank River and Willow Grove, Delaware used by Harriet Tubman.
Erected by Maryland Civil War Trails.
Marker series. This marker is included in the Maryland Civil War Trails marker series.
Location. 38° 42.081′ N, 75° 53.837′ W. Marker is in Preston, Maryland, in Caroline County. Marker is on Linchester Road 0.1 miles north of Maryland Route 331, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Preston MD 21655, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Linchester Mill-Living Dangerously (a few steps from this marker); Linchester (within shouting distance of this marker); Linchester Mill (within shouting distance of this marker); Leverton House-Finding Safe Haven (approx. half a mile away); Freedom Preston (approx. 0.9 miles away); Site of Frazierís Chapel (approx. one mile away); Mt. Pleasant Cemetery-Dangerous Rendezvous (approx. 2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Preston.
Also see . . . Africans in America. Harriet Tubman from MPT program. (Submitted on November 6, 2007, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland.)
Categories. • Abolition & Underground RR • African Americans • Notable Persons • War, US Civil •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on November 6, 2007, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland. This page has been viewed 2,956 times since then and 54 times this year. Last updated on February 15, 2008, by Christopher Busta-Peck of Shaker Heights, Ohio. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on November 6, 2007, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.