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Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway Historical Markers

A driving trail along Maryland's Eastern Shore highlighting sites associated with the Underground Railroad.
 
"The Rocks" and the Underground Railroad Marker image, Touch for more information
By Carl Gordon Moore Jr., July 6, 2023
"The Rocks" and the Underground Railroad Marker
1 Delaware, New Castle County, Wilmington — "The Rocks" and the Underground Railroad — The Delaware Underground Railroad —
"The Rocks," a natural landing on the Christina River, was critical to Wilmington's Underground Railroad network. Captain James Watson Fountain outfitted a schooner to secretly carry freedom-seekers north from North Carolina and Virginia. Black . . . Map (db m226518) HM
2 Maryland, Caroline County, Choptank — 25 — Choptank LandingEscape 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, . . . Map (db m79172) HM
3 Maryland, Caroline County, Denton — 33 — Caroline County Visitor CenterAbolitionists Abound — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
With more free than enslaved blacks and a sympathetic Quaker population, Caroline County was a hotbed of Underground Railroad activity until slavery was abolished in Maryland in 1864. Slaves, freemen of color, and whites often . . . Map (db m205449) HM
4 Maryland, Caroline County, Denton — 31 — Caroline CourthouseIn the Shadow of Justice — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
Many facets of 19th century rural life focused on a county’s courthouse. Elected officials, lawyers, merchants, and ordinary citizens all had reasons to gather at the Caroline County Courthouse Square. For the enslaved and abolitionists, the . . . Map (db m79340) HM
5 Maryland, Caroline County, Denton — 35 — Choptank River Heritage CenterSteal Away by River — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
The Choptank River was as entwined with the history of slavery and freedom on the Eastern Shore as any plantation. Slaves arrived by boat for auction and left the dock in the hands of a new owner. At wharves like this, black watermen played an . . . Map (db m79342) HM
6 Maryland, Caroline County, Denton — Moses and the HoundsHarriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway
Growing up as a slave near Easton, MD, Moses Viney often heard, "The wild geese come from Canada, where all are free." When he was 23 years old, Moses learned he might be sold to a new owner in the Deep South. To avoid this fate, he and two . . . Map (db m79341) HM
7 Maryland, Caroline County, Denton — 34 — Tuckahoe Neck Meeting HouseLiving Their Beliefs — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
The Quakers, also known as Friends, who met in this Meeting House not only held strong opinions on the abolition of slavery and women’s rights, but they also acted on those beliefs. After 1790, the Friends who gathered here refused membership to . . . Map (db m79354) HM
8 Maryland, Caroline County, Denton — 30 — William Still CenterFamilies Divided & United — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
William Still’s mother Sidney and several of his siblings lived in a cottage on the plantation where they were enslaved. Sidney escaped with her children to join her husband in New Jersey, but she was soon recaptured and returned to Maryland. . . . Map (db m79313) HM
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9 Maryland, Caroline County, Greensboro — 33 — GreensboroThreatened by Ideas — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway — Reported missing
More than cargo flowed through commercial towns like Greensboro. Abolitionist ideas and freedom seekers on the move created tension within a society dependent on slavery. Site of the northern-most bridge over the Choptank River, Greensboro . . . Map (db m79356) HM
10 Maryland, Caroline County, Harmony — “Sailing Away to Freedom”Gilpin Point — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
Gilpin’s Point was one of the busiest wharves along the Choptank River in Caroline County where steamboats and sailing vessels transported people, timber, agricultural products, and seafood. It sat just upriver from Dr. Anthony C. Thompson’s . . . Map (db m79311) HM
11 Maryland, Caroline County, Jumptown — 35 — Adkins ArboretumSlavery's Arboretum — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
The forests and waterways of the Eastern Shore, traditional land of the Choptank and Nanticoke Indians, provided the backup for the austere home life, backbreaking labor, and dramatic escapes of enslaved blacks. Hundreds of acres of white . . . Map (db m113807) HM
12 Maryland, Caroline County, Preston — Escape from Poplar NeckHarriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway
Harriet Tubman’s parents, Rit and Ben Ross, moved to Poplar Neck in 1847. Her father worked as a lumber foreman on Dr. Anthony C. Thompson’s 2,200 heavily forested acres. Harriet probably made her first escape from this place in 1849, and she . . . Map (db m79173) HM
13 Maryland, Caroline County, Preston — 23 — Leverton HouseFinding Safe Haven — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
Refugees from slavery came here for temporary sanctuary. Under the cover of darkness, they crept across these fields toward the home of Quaker Jacob and Hannah Leverton. The house, a rare, documented Underground Railroad station, still . . . Map (db m79303) HM
14 Maryland, Caroline County, Preston — 24 — Linchester MillLiving Dangerously — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
Daily life at and around Linchester Mill provided fertile yet dangerous ground for those seeking freedom. The mill, a general store, post office and homes at this site brought whites and blacks, free and enslaved, into regular contact. . . . Map (db m79299) HM
15 Maryland, Caroline County, Preston — Mt. Pleasant CemeteryDangerous Rendezvous — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
After Quakers sold their meetinghouse to the local black community in 1849, the new owners established Mt. Pleasant Methodist Episcopal Church. The original church building has since burned, but the modern day congregation still uses the . . . Map (db m79178) HM
16 Maryland, Caroline County, Preston — 28 — Webb CabinLiving Free — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
Common in the mid-19th century, this cabin is a rare survivor today. James H. and Mary Ann Webb built this one-room house in the 1850s, using materials found in the surrounding landscape. Hand-hewn log walls rest on a foundation of ballast stones . . . Map (db m79305) HM
17 Maryland, Dorchester County, Bucktown — 17 — Brodess FarmBorn into Slavery — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
Harriet Tubman spent some of her childhood on this farm once owned by Edward Brodess. It was here that she experienced the comforts of family and the cruelties of slavery. Tubman was born a few miles away, on Anthony Thompson's plantation. . . . Map (db m205133) HM
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18 Maryland, Dorchester County, Bucktown — Finding FreedomThe Call of Freedom Reported missing
Dorchester County occupies a central place in the story of the Underground Railroad, the secret network of "stations" and "conductors" that sheltered and shepherded hundreds of enslave African Americans to freedom in the mid-1800s. The famed . . . Map (db m126550) HM
19 Maryland, Dorchester County, Cambridge — Born To Be FreeSlavery — 1820 — Reported permanently removed
Harriet Tubman, known as "Minty", was born to Rittia 'Rit' Green Ross, her mother, and Benjamin 'Ben' Ross, her father. Ben and Rit Ross were both enslaved (but to different owners) at the time of Harriet's birth. The number of Harriet Tubman's . . . Map (db m109922) HM
20 Maryland, Dorchester County, Cambridge — Finding Freedom
The Call of Freedom Dorchester County occupies a central place in the story of the Underground Railroad, the secret network of "stations" and "conductors" that sheltered and shepherded hundreds of enslave African Americans to freedom in the . . . Map (db m3964) HM
21 Maryland, Dorchester County, Cambridge — 2 — Harriet Tubman Memorial GardenCelebrating an Icon — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
The local community, joined by others across the nation, honors its native daughter, Harriet Ross Tubman. Her memory endures through artistic expression in works of literature, music, sculpture, paint, photography, performance, and more. . . . Map (db m109915) HM
22 Maryland, Dorchester County, Cambridge — 4 — High Street District & Bayly HouseThrough Blood and Tears — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
One of the oldest buildings in Cambridge, the Caile-Bayly house was built sometime in the mid-18th century. Based on archaeology and analysis by architectural historians, the one-room cabin behind the house appears to have initially functioned as . . . Map (db m205040) HM
23 Maryland, Dorchester County, Cambridge — Joe Bailey Shakes the Lion's PawUnderground Railroad — 1849 - 1858 — Reported permanently removed
Harriet Tubman led many slaves from Dorchester County to Canada (via the suspension bridge at Niagara Falls). One trip with "fugitive slaves" occurred in November 1856, when Tubman conducted Josia (Joe) Bailey, William Bailey, Peter Pennington . . . Map (db m109913) HM
24 Maryland, Dorchester County, Cambridge — 5 — Long WharfThe River — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
As a deep-water tributary of the Chesapeake Bay, the Choptank River was a commercial artery of the Eastern Shore since colonial times. Cargoes of timber, tobacco, and farm harvests were hoisted by dockworkers to waiting ships. During the . . . Map (db m78737) HM
25 Maryland, Dorchester County, Cambridge — 7 — Stanley InstituteRacing to Freedom — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
In October 1857, ten years before Stanley Institute was established two large groups of enslaved families successfully fled this area. Caroline and Daniel Stanley and their six children escaped with Nat and Lizzie Amby and six others. Two . . . Map (db m114843) HM
26 Maryland, Dorchester County, Cambridge — Station Stops: The Underground RailroadUnderground Railroad — 1849 - 1858 — Reported permanently removed
William Still William Still (1821- 1902) was born in Burlington New Jersey. His parents had been enslaved on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. To escape slavery, William Still’s parents and their young daughter fled to New Jersey before . . . Map (db m117270) HM
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27 Maryland, Dorchester County, Church Creek — Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge
The Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge, one of over 560 national wildlife refuges, provides critical habitats for native plants and wildlife. The 17 acres that for the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad State Park are surrounded by the . . . Map (db m114439) HM
28 Maryland, Dorchester County, Church Creek — 15 — Blackwater National Wildlife RefugeTaking Refuge from Slavery — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
It is no accident that for years more fugitives escaped from slavery in Maryland than any other state—the 1850 census recorded 259 runaways. Location played a critical role in these escapes. Networks of black and white abolitionists helped . . . Map (db m168865) HM
29 Maryland, Dorchester County, Church Creek — 8 — Church CreekJoin the Journey
The 125-mile Harriet Tubman Tubman Underground Railroad Byway is the only place in the nation that preserves and interprets the landscapes where Harriet Tubman was born, lived, labored, and fled. In 1849, she liberated herself from the . . . Map (db m205114) HM
30 Maryland, Dorchester County, Church Creek — 14 — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Ctr.Mastering the Land — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
Born nearby on Anthony Thompson's plantation in 1822, Harriet Tubman spent more than 25 years living and laboring amid landscapes like these. This watery, lowland environment shaped the nature of life here. Tubman learned how to navigate . . . Map (db m205119) HM
31 Maryland, Dorchester County, Church Creek — Highway to FreedomHarriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway
Church Creek sits along MD Route 16, which follows an ancient Indian trail between the Chesapeake and Delaware bays. More enslaved people were able to escape from farms, homes, and businesses along this northbound road than from other parts of . . . Map (db m205120) HM
32 Maryland, Dorchester County, Church Creek — The Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway
Explore the scenic byway, follow the path to freedom and discover Harriet Tubman's rich history. Experience extraordinary stories of courage along the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway. With unspoiled landscapes virtually unchanged . . . Map (db m114437) HM
33 Maryland, Dorchester County, Church Creek — The Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center
Discover the extraordinary life and legacy of Harriet Tubman in the landscape of her childhood and early adult life. Harriet Ross Tubman, an American legendary human rights advocate and suffragist, was born in enslaved in Dorchester . . . Map (db m114438) HM
34 Maryland, Dorchester County, Church Creek — The Underground Railroad
The term "Underground Railroad" originated in the 1830s. It refers to resistance against slavery and acts of self-liberation, escape, and flight. Determining their own fate, runaways from Maryland's Eastern Shore sought refuge in the nearby . . . Map (db m205121) HM
35 Maryland, Dorchester County, East New Market — 22 — Faith Community UMC ChurchLiving a Double Life — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
During the 1840s and 1850s, the locals knew Reverend Samuel Green as a literate, highly respected Methodist Episcopal preacher and community leader. His church once stood here on land donated in 1843 by free woman Sarah Young. While the building . . . Map (db m79150) HM
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36 Maryland, Dorchester County, Madison — 10 — MadisonPreparing for Freedom — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
Harriet Tubman spent her formative years in and around Madison, once called Tobaccostick. As a young woman, she worked for Joseph Stewart in his home and fields, until she joined her father Ben Ross in Stewart’s lumber harvesting operation. . . . Map (db m126562) HM
37 Maryland, Dorchester County, Madison — 9 — Malone's ChurchTies that Bind — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
Harriet Tubman was born nearby on Harrisville Road at the Anthony Thompson plantation around 1822, where Thompson enslaved her father, Ben Ross, and about 40 other people. While Tubman’s roots began near here, she moved to Bucktown during her . . . Map (db m126547) HM
38 Maryland, Dorchester County, Taylors Island — 12 — New Revived ChurchFamily & Faith Connections — Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway —
Founded in 1876 as Jefferson Methodist Episcopal Church, New Revived United Methodist Church was one of five African American congregations established in this vicinity between 1864 and 1880. These churches were rooted in faith communities that . . . Map (db m78782) HM
 
 
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Apr. 21, 2024