Choptank Landing-Escape from Poplar Neck
Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway
While the Choptank River could pose a troublesome barrier to those without a boat, others used the river as a path to freedom.
Josiah Bailey, an enslaved logger and shipbuilder, rowed six miles up the river. His destination was Poplar Neck, where he alerted Harriet Tubmanís father, Ben Ross, that he wanted her help to escape.
In November 1856, Harriet arrived to lead Bailey, his brother Bill, and friends Peter Pennington and Eliza Manokey to Canada. Hotly pursued, Bailey made good his escape despite a reward for his capture.
With Tubmanís guidance, her brothers, Ben, Henry, and Robert, also escaped from Poplar Neck. Using coded messages, Harriet notified her brothers of her plan to rescue them from their parentís cabin. On Christmas Day 1854, she met them and several friends and guided them to Philadelphia and on to Canada.
(Inscription next to the photo at the bottom left)
RIGHT: Tupin Wright, William Hugiett and John C. Henry posted a $2,000 reward for the capture of the three men. Advertisements like this one provide scholars with considerable information about the appearance and clothing of those who freed themselves.
Marker series. This marker is included in the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway marker series.
Location. 38° 40.89′
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 4 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Escape from Poplar Neck (here, next to this marker); The Maryland Lot (within shouting distance of this marker); Choptank (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Mt. Pleasant Cemetery-Dangerous Rendezvous (approx. 3 miles away); Mt. Pleasant M. E. Church (approx. 3 miles away); Freedom (approx. 3.1 miles away); Preston (approx. 3.1 miles away); Site of Frazierís Chapel (approx. 3.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Preston.
Categories. • Abolition & Underground RR • African Americans •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on November 26, 2014, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Maryland. This page has been viewed 287 times since then and 20 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on November 26, 2014, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.