Weekend of events scheduled for next month at Underground Railroad State Park
ANNAPOLIS, MD—Governor Larry Hogan announced today that in celebration of the 200th anniversary of Harriet Tubman’s birth and the 5th anniversary of her opening, the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad State Park and Visitor Center will host a series of free, family-friendly shows over the weekend of March 12-13.
“Harriet Tubman has dedicated her life to the selfless service of others and the cause of freedom,” Governor Hogan said. “This year, as we celebrate his 200th birthday, we hope that even more Marylanders and visitors from across the country will take the time to learn about the Underground Railroad’s most famous conductor and about his years of struggle to lead countless slaves to their freedom.”
Located near Harriet Tubman’s birthplace in Dorchester County, the park is open Tuesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and features an exhibit hall, immersive exhibits, museum shop, and tour office. information. Throughout this celebratory weekend and the rest of the year, the park’s expert staff, known as “Team Tubman”, hosts special programs to honor the life and legacy of the abolitionist. and suffragette.
Throughout March, the park will display many artifacts from Tubman’s life, many in public for the first time, including a midwife’s receipt for Tubman’s birth, the “runaway” advertisement of Tubman and objects recovered from the site of his father Ben The recently discovered Ross cabin and excavated by archaeologists from the Maryland Department of Transportation.
Scheduled programs and events for the anniversary weekend include:
Friday March 11:
7:00 p.m. – Virtual premiere of “Rooted Wisdom: Nature’s Role in the Underground Railroad”
This film recounts the experiences of freedom seekers’ journeys through the desert. The documentary film will be broadcast live on Friday, March 11 at 7 p.m. on naturesrole.org. The virtual event is free and open to everyone, although registration is encouraged on bit.ly/RootedWisdomFirst. A round table with historians and filmmakers will follow.
After the premiere, the film will be screened in the multi-purpose room every hour at 10:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 1:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. throughout the celebration weekend.
Saturday March 12:
10 a.m. – Opening Ceremony with a performance of living history by Millicent Sparks
11 a.m. – “Discovering the residential site of Ben Ross”
Hear Dr. Julie Schablitsky of the Maryland Department of Transportation talk about the successful effort to locate and excavate the Ben Ross site. The artifacts are on display for the first time at the Visitor Center for the entire month of March.
12:00 p.m. – “Foraging Freedom: Discovering the Natural World of the Underground Railroad”
Take an interactive walking tour with historian Anthony Cohen through the Legacy Garden and adjacent Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge. Participants should expect to be on their feet and are encouraged to wear comfortable all-weather shoes.
1:00 p.m. – “Jubilee Voices at Harriet’s House”
Listen to the Washington Revels Jubilee Voices during the 200th Tubman festivities. Jubilee Voices is an ensemble committed to preserving African-American history and traditions through song and storytelling.
2:00 p.m. – “The Education of Harriet Ross Tubman”
Tubman biographer Kate Clifford Larson discusses the free and enslaved people who helped raise, protect, nurture and educate Minty to become the woman we know as Harriet Tubman.
3:00 p.m. – “‘Designing a new place to experience history: an exploration of architects’
Hear Chris Elcock, associate director of architectural firm GWWO Inc., as he explains the design process behind the creation of the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad State Park and Visitor Center
Sunday March 13:
10 a.m. – “Meet Harriet Tubman”
Living history performer Millicent Sparks stars as Tubman and shares her monumental life with audience members.
11 a.m. – “The Hidden Chesapeake Through the Eyes of Harriet Tubman”
Tubman biographer Kate Clifford Larson shares some of the places around the Chesapeake Bay that bear witness to the history, memories and legacy of the Underground Railroad and its most famous conductor.
12 p.m. – “The Chronicles of Adam”
A powerful and inspiring first-person historical rendition of an enslaved man named Adam.
1:00 p.m. – “Legacy Hour”
Hear from community members and enjoy musical selections from Renna McKinney as we honor the lives of Donald Pinder and Herschel Johnson. In the second half hour, be inspired by Tina Wyatt, great, great, great-grandniece of Harriet Tubman as she shares “A Letter to Soph.”
2 p.m. – “The legacy of slavery in Maryland”
Chris Haley of the Maryland State Archives presents a general overview of slavery in Maryland, which will include examples of records specifically related to the state and east coast counties and how slaves and frees were affected by the “particular institution”.
3:00 p.m. – “Freedom linked”
Join public historian and historical interpreter Marvin-Alonzo Greer in this family-friendly program with songs and interactive stories.
The Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Maryland Department of Commerce, National Park Service, and other federal, state, and local partners will continue to celebrate and highlight aspects of Tubman’s story throughout the year.
The Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad State Park and Visitor Center, which just reached its 5th year of operation, has welcomed hundreds of thousands of visitors from 70 countries and territories and all 50 states. This state-of-the-art green facility is operated in partnership with the National Park Service.