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Woman of the Week

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This Week’s Woman of the Week is:

Harriet Tubman – 1822 – 1913

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Harriet Tubman (born Araminta Ross) was an American Humanitarian and Abolitionist. She also served as a spy for the US Army during the American Civil War. Harriet was born into slavery in Dorchester County, Maryland. As a child she was beaten by her various masters. She suffered a traumatic head wound when a heavy piece of metal thrown at another slave by an angry master caught her instead. The injury caused her dizziness, pain and hypersomnia which affected her throughout her life.

In 1849, Harriet escaped to Philadelphia and quickly returned to rescue her own family. Thereafter she made it her mission to free other slaves. Using a network of antislavery activists and safe houses known as the Underground Railroad she made a total of thirteen missions and rescued approximately seventy enslaved families and friends.  Harriet (also called Moses) never lost a passenger.

When the civil war began Harriet worked first as cook and nurse for the Union army and later as an armed scout and spy. She was the first woman to lead an armed expedition in the war. She guided the raid at Combahee Ferry, which freed more than 700 slaves. After the war she retired to her family home in Auburn, New York where she had purchased property, and cared for her aging parents. She was active in the women’s suffrage movement until she became ill. Harriet Tubman died of pneumonia on March 10, 1913.

Tribute to Harriet Tubman who was truly one of the bravest women in history

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