"You'll Be Free Or Die"
Harriet — General Tubman, Moses of her People
June 9–15, 2013
Historian Guide: Anthony Cohen
Myths surround Harriet Tubman on the 100th anniversary of her death in 1913. Abolitionist, Underground Railroad conductor, Civil War nurse and spy, she was deeply religious and passionate in her pursuit of freedom. Born into slavery on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, she escaped bondage and then returned again and again to liberate family and friends.
The lingo of railroading — stations, station masters, cars, and passengers — became the coded language of the underground. Tubman, along with lesser-known opponents of slavery, formed a clandestine network of meeting points and safe houses stretching from Maryland through Delaware to Philadelphia, New York, and beyond. Believing herself guided by Divine Providence, her 100 percent success rate, even with rewards for her capture, made her a legend. Resourceful and skilled in the use of disguise and diversions, she carried a pistol, telling the faint-hearted they must go on or die. Her knowledge of the wilderness and the marshes and woodlands, learned from frequent returns to the South, was invaluable to the Union Army. As the first woman to lead an armed expedition in the war, she guided a raid on the Combahee River, liberating more than seven hundred slaves. Before her death, Harriet Tubman recalled, "I never ran a train off the track and I never lost a passenger."
Anthony Cohen, historian, author, and filmmaker, has walked in the footsteps of his ancestors along hundreds of miles of the Underground Railroad. Join us for this new exciting trip of learning and exploration.
7 Days / 6 Nights
Cost: $2,750 Single Occupancy, $2,250 Double Occupancy
Click to request a 2013 printed Travel Guide.
Sunday, June 9
Gather in Washington, D. C. for a briefing and welcome dinner hosted by Anthony Cohen and HistoryAmerica TOURS.
Monday, June 10
From the Emancipation Proclamation to Frederick Douglass' home, we'll see our nation's capital through the lens of freedom-seekers. We visit the daring escape location at the front gate of the White House. We visit slave dwellings, trading pen sites, and a documented Underground Railroad station. Overnight in Germantown, Maryland.
Tuesday, June 11
Live the life of a freedom-seeker while hoeing a row and experiencing the auction block and daily endurances at a working 1850s-style Maryland farm. Next we visit the plantation where Oprah Winfrey trained for her role as the slave "Sethe" in the movie Beloved. Sample slave cuisine, hold shackles and artifacts, and discover what freedom really means. We travel to St. Michaels, Maryland, for our overnight.
Wednesday, June 12
Our tour today starts at the new state park visitor center where Tubman's life unfolds. We follow trails through marshlands and forests where she worked and explored as a child. We visit the country store believed to be the site where Harriet received a blow to the head while helping an escaping slave, which transformed her into the freedom-fighter known as "Moses." At Poplar Neck — a 2,200-acre timber plantation site where Harriet's parents lived and worked — we see the places where Tubman made her most daring escapes and rescues. At the Leverton House we learn of the Quaker family who aided fugitive escapes before being exposed in 1858. Overnight in Dover, Delaware.
Thursday, June 13
This day in Delaware, the final state before Pennsylvania free soil, draws us closer to freedom's border. At Camden Meeting House we sit in the same pews as Quaker abolitionists whose Underground Railroad networks linked into Tubman's routes. At Dover Courthouse we witness reenactments of dramatic fugitive slave cases, and visit a nearby 18th-century plantation to hear the story of slaves who were freed. Overnight in Philadelphia.
Friday, June 14
You are now on Free Soil! Or so you would have thought, before discovering the Free States of the North were fertile hunting grounds for fugitive slaves. Here we visit the site of Underground Railroad agent William Still, who sheltered hundreds of freedom-seekers. At a historic black church we learn of the spiritual journey out of bondage, and at Independence Hall we discover the Liberty Bell was not named for the American Revolution, but as a symbol for the abolitionist movement. Return to Washington, D. C., home to presidents and statesmen, and the starting point of the Underground Railroad.
Saturday, June 15
Depart at your leisure following breakfast.