First Person account of Hariot Tubman.

Essay by Babyguh4382 November 2003

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I was born into slavery in 1819 or 1820, in Dorchester County,

Maryland. Given the names of my two parents, both held in slavery, I was

of purely African ancestry. I was whipped even as a small child and

received a serious headwound when I refused to help tie up a run-a-way

slave. At the age of 25, I married John Tubman, a free African American.

Five years later, fearing I would be sold, I made my escape. I was given a

piece of paper by a white neighbor with two names, and told how to find

the first house on my path to freedom. At the first house I was put into a

wagon, covered with a sack, and driven to my next destination. Following

the route to Pennsylvania, I initially settled in Philadelphia, where I met

William Still, the Philadelphia Stationmaster on the Underground Railroad.

With the assistance of Still, and other members of the Philadelphia Anti-

Slavery Society, I learned about the workings of the UGRR. My success

was wonderful. Time and again I made successful visits to Maryland on

the Underground Rail Road, and would be absent for weeks at a time,

running daily risks while making preparations for myself and my

passengers. Great fears were entertained for my safety, but I seemed

wholly devoid of personal fear. The idea of being captured by slave-

hunters or slave-holders, seemed never to enter my mind. I was

apparently proof against all adversaries. While I maintained utter

personal indifference, I was much more watchful with regard to those I

was piloting. Half of my time, I had the appearance of one asleep, and

would actually sit down by the road-side and go fast asleep* when on her

errands of mercy through the South, yet, I would...