Tag Archives: underground railroad

Experience the Relationship Between Nature and the Underground Railroad During Adkins Arboretum Audio Tour Launch June 1

Adkins Underground Railroad (400 x 300)The Eastern Shore’s natural landscape provided a passageway to freedom along the Underground Railroad for hundreds, possibly thousands, of slaves, including abolitionists Frederick Douglass and Harriet Tubman. Designated as a “Place to Visit” on the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway, Adkins Arboretum reflects the conditions through which freedom seekers traveled en route to freedom. On Sat., June 1, join a special evening event celebrating the launch of “A Journey Begins: Nature’s Role in the Flight to Freedom,” a new Arboretum audio tour that explores the little-known relationship between nature and the Underground Railroad.

Developed by Arboretum staff and volunteers in concert with noted historians Anthony Cohen and Dr. Kate Clifford Larson and consultants Q Media Productions, and funded through generous grant support from Maryland Humanities Council and Maryland Heritage Area Authority, this educational and thought-provoking self-guided tour examines how nature provided both obstacles and opportunities for freedom seekers. The story of nature and the Underground Railroad also interprets the profound connection between landscapes and historic conditions and events, emphasizing the importance of preserving native landscapes throughout the Chesapeake Bay region.

The audio tour launch runs from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Join this special evening to celebrate the project’s completion, meet the project team, and experience the tour. Refreshments will be served. The event is free and open to the public; reservations are required at adkinsarboretum.org.

 

Kent County Public Library Celebrates African American History

Kent County Public Library is pleased to announce that throughout the month of February, the Chestertown branch will be exhibiting UNDERGROUND RAILROAD: Stories of Flight from Maryland, a five panel traveling display created by the Maryland State Archives. This exhibit is designed to provide an overview of and serve as a gateway to the extensive research materials available at the Maryland State Archives.

As an extension of this month-long exhibit, on Saturday, February 16th, Kent County Public Library and the League of Women Voters will sponsor the Maryland State Archives program QUEST FOR FREEDOM: The African American Experience in Kent County, 1750-1870. This exploration of local history will be presented at KCPL’s Chestertown Branch on Saturday, February 16th, 2013 at 11 a.m. Archivists Tanner Sparks and Ryan Cox will discuss the MSA’s Legacy of Slavery in Maryland project, which documents the lives of individuals who were involved in the Underground Railroad in Dorchester, Caroline, Queen Anne’s, Talbot and Kent counties. Focusing on case studies of individuals from Kent County, this 1-hour program will highlight the African American quest for freedom from the Colonial period to the Civil War. A light lunch will be provided following the presentation.

For more information about this event or to learn more about local history resources that are available at KCPL, please call 410.778.3636 or visit the Chestertown Branch at 408 High Street, Chestertown.

Adkins Arboretum Awarded Support for Underground Railroad Interpretation

With its forests, thickets, marshes, rivers and creeks, the Eastern Shore’s natural landscape provided a passageway to freedom along the Underground Railroad for hundreds, and possibly thousands, of slaves, including abolitionists Frederick Douglass and Harriet Tubman. Designated as a “Place to Visit” on the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway, Adkins Arboretum reflects the conditions through which slaves traveled en route to freedom, and serves as a dramatic vista to experience the little-known relationship between nature and the Underground Railroad.

With grant support from Maryland Humanities Council and Maryland Heritage Area Authority, the Arboretum will produce a stimulating, educational and thought-provoking interpretive project that explores the role of nature for those in pursuit of freedom via the Underground Railroad. The two awards, totaling $28,000, will expand the Arboretum’s capacity to tell the story and experience of the Underground Railroad and make a significant contribution to the development of the Underground Railroad Scenic Byway.

The project will include a self-guided audio tour, developed in concert with historians Anthony Cohen and Dr. Kate Clifford Larson, that will enhance participants’ understanding of the Underground Railroad and demonstrate how nature provided both obstacles and opportunities for freedom seekers. Arboretum docents and volunteers will be trained to interpret the issues of slavery and the Underground Railroad via guided walks, and participants will be engaged in a blog-based dialogue of the unique connection between the Underground Railroad and nature.

Few artifacts and buildings of the Underground Railroad remain. The Eastern Shore landscape fills this historical gap because it is the artifact that remains to evoke this history and provide an important historical context to understand what it meant to travel on the Underground Railroad. Participants will learn about the connection between preserved Chesapeake Bay landscapes and historic conditions and events, as well as the importance of preserving natural landscapes to provide a context for history.

The project will be completed by summer 2013. For more information, call 410-634-2847, ext. 0 or send e-mail to info@adkinsarboretum.org.

Adkins Arboretum is a 400-acre native garden and preserve at the headwaters of Tuckahoe Creek in Caroline County. Open year round, the Arboretum offers educational programs for all ages about nature and gardening. Through its Campaign to Build a Green Legacy, the Arboretum will build the new W. Flaccus and Ruth B. Stifel Center at Arboretum Center and redesign its entrance to broaden educational offerings and public outreach initiatives promoting best practices in conservation and land stewardship. For additional information about Arboretum programs, visit www.adkinsarboretum.org or call 410.634.2847, ext. 0. For information about the Campaign to Build a Green Legacy, contact Kate Rattie at krattie@adkinsarboretum.org or 410.634.2847, ext. 33.