WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) today urged the Subcommittee on National Parks of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee to support his bill to create The Harriet Tubman National Historical Parks Act, S. 247, as a way to honor the life of Harriet Ross Tubman, the most famous “conductor” on the Underground Railroad.
Earlier this year, Senator Cardin was joined by Senators Barbara A. Mikulski, (D-MD), Charles Schumer and Kirsten E. Gillibrand (both D-NY) in reintroducing legislation to establish two National Historic Parks, one in Maryland and one in New York to honor the life’s work of Harriet Tubman. The National Historical Park in Maryland will trace Tubman’s early life on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, where she was born and later escaped from slavery to become one of the leaders on the Underground Railroad.
“Harriet Tubman was a true American patriot, for whom liberty and freedom were not just concepts,” said Senator Cardin in written testimony submitted to the hearing. “She lived those principles and shared that freedom with hundreds of others. These two parks will make it possible for Marylanders and the entire nation to trace her life’s work and remember all that she was able to accomplish.”
In Maryland, The Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Historical Park would include historically important landscapes in Dorchester, Caroline and Talbot counties that are evocative of the life of Harriet Tubman.
In 1999, Congress directed the National Park Service (NPS) to conduct a Special Resource Study to determine the appropriateness of establishing a unit of the National Park Service to honor Harriet Tubman. In 2009, the NPS recommended that a Park include two geographically separate units and formally came out in support of Senator Cardin’s legislation.