Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad State Park

Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Historic and State Park

Amid bird calls, freshly plowed fields, and the hum of mosquitoes, the landscape that shaped Harriet Tubman’s life as an enslaved child, young woman, and freedom seeker thrives still in Dorchester, Talbot, and Caroline Counties, preserved within the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Monument and National Historical Park, a 17-acre tract adjacent to the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge in Dorchester County near Church Creek, Maryland.

The Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center houses permanent exhibits, an A/V program, restrooms, a museum store, an information desk, and a research library, and it serves as the park’s primary visitor destination, opening to the public on March 11, 2017.

If you plan to take a walk in our legacy garden or to explore related sites, be prepared for hot weather and mosquitoes in the warm seasons.

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Hours

The park is open to the public daily from 9-5. The visitor center will close on New Year's Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day

(Note: Many places fill to capacity on busy, nice weather days, especially holiday weekends. Please call ahead or visit the official website to get the most up-to-date information before visiting.)

Fees

There are no fees to visit Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Monument, but some partner sites may charge fees.

History

Harriet Tubman was born in Dorchester County in 1822 and escaped slavery at the age of 27 years.

She was known to have returned to Maryland's Eastern Shore 13 times and freed approximately 70 enslaved family and other acquaintances.

Her abilities to live off the land and lead enslaved people to escape bondage in hostile environmental conditions were forged in these landscapes.

Tubman’s associated success on the Underground Railroad stemmed from her intimate knowledge of the area's woodlands and swamps, making the park setting an ideal location.

Activities

The state park will offer exhibits, programs, and tours. 

Facilities

The Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center houses permanent exhibits, an A/V program, restrooms, a museum store, an information desk, and a research library, and it serves as the park’s primary visitor destination. Its design concept, “The View North,” symbolizes the importance of moving northward, away from slavery and into the possibilities of freedom; a quiet, open legacy garden offers walking paths for meditation and reflection.

A partnership between the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, the National Park Service, and Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad State Park operates the 16,000-square foot, LEED Silver certified visitor center and administration building, along with a 2,700-square foot open air pavilion with a fireplace and picnic tables. The state park is a 17-acre site adjacent to the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge. The site is also home to the National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom program, which partners with local, state, and federal entities to commemorate events, preserve sites and resources, and educate the public about the national significance of the Underground Railroad.

Accessibility

The Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center, administrative building, picnic pavilion, and legacy garden are fully accessible with handicapped parking available. Service animals are welcome in park facilities and grounds.

Wheelchairs are available for guest use upon request.

Pets

Pets are permitted in the Park.

Main image: Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad State Park
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