By Frederick H. Lowe
Congress has voted to establish a national historic park for Harriet Tubman, a conductor on the Underground Railroad. The U.S. Senate voted in December to establish a Harriet Tubman National Historical Park in her former home in Cayuga County, N.Y. and Eastern Shore of Maryland, where she grew up. Congress also passed similar legislation.
The administration of Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley has secured $20 million for construction of the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad State Park and Visitor Center, which is scheduled to open in 2016.
The two-story brick home on the outskirts of Auburn, N.Y., is expected to boost tourism in the area. Tubman purchased the home from U.S. Sen. William H. Seward, who later became U.S. Secretary of State from 1861 to 1869. The brick home was later demolished for a frame structure.
The national parks are the first in history to honor an African-American woman.