Harriet Tubman

An incredible hero who overcame many obstacles

Who was Harriet Tubman?

Have you ever wondered how many slaves would never have been free if it wasn’t for Harriet Tubman? An incredibly strong and brave woman, Harriet Tubman brought over 300 slaves to freedom in her lifetime. Despite her rough childhood and adult life, Harriet never gave up and became one of the most influential and important conductors of the Underground Railroad.

Early Life

Harriet Tubman was born a slave in Maryland's Dorchester County around 1820. At age five or six, she began to work as a house servant. Seven years later she was sent to work in the fields. While she was still in her early teens, she suffered an injury that would follow her for the rest of her life. Always ready to stand up for someone else, Tubman blocked a doorway to protect another field hand from an angry overseer. The overseer picked up and threw a two-pound weight at the field hand. It fell short, striking Tubman on the head. She never fully recovered from the blow, which subjected her to spells in which she would fall into a deep sleep.

Adult Life

In 1824, at the age of 24, Harriet married a free slave named John Tubman. Harriet quickly realized that one of her greatest goals was to escape to the North to become free. John, already being free, did not agree with her decision and chose not to go with her. With the help of some kind Quakers running stations on the Underground Railroad,, she reached freedom in Philadelphia in 1849. Her next goal was to bring her sister and her family up to freedom. She successfully helped them escape to freedom, and then made another trip to the South to bring her brother and 2 other men she didn’t know. This was the first time Harriet helped strangers, and it certainly wouldn’t be the last.

Her Greatest Accomplishments

From this point on, Harriet made countless trips to the South to help slaves escape and gain their freedom. She became the most well-known “conductor” on the Underground Railroad, making 19 trips South in 10 years, bringing over 300 slaves to freedom. This amazing accomplishment earned her the nickname of “Moses.” This accomplishment is so incredible due to the bravery and selflessness that it required. At one point, a $40,000 reward was offered for Harriet, and yet she continued to help others despite the danger. Not only did Harriet help slaves escape, but she helped with the antislavery campaigns. When the Civil War began, Harriet continued to help her cause by working as a nurse, cook, and spy for the Union. No matter the danger, Harriet never ever gave up and always continued to help others, valuing their lives above her own. If Harriet Tubman had not have been so brave, countless slaves would’ve remained in slavery, continuing to be tortured and maybe even killed. Her phenomenal achievements changed the world, showing everyone that one person’s dream can make a world of a difference.

An Incredible Woman

After the Civil War ended, Harriet settled in New York, where she died a peaceful death in 1913. Harriet led an amazing life and will always be remembered for her bravery and strength. Remember, as Harriet Tubman said, “Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.”