Jill Jasuta

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18 01, 2018

Black History Month events at the Tubman Visitor Center

The Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center, Site #13 along the Tubman Byway, hosts family-friendly programming on weekends in the month of February in honor of Black History Month. The Visitor Center is open daily from 9am to 5pm and all events are free of charge.

Fridays | February 2, 9, 16 and 23
  • Introductions at 10am, noon, 2pm, and 4pm. Enjoy a ranger-led introduction and learn about the symbolism of the park and Visitor Center.
Saturdays | February 3, 10 and 24
  • Conversations with a Ranger at 11am. Meet other guests and engage in a ranger-led conversation. Topics include why Araminta Ross changed her name to Harriet Tubman and what skills made her a successful Underground Railroad conductor.
  • William Still: An Underground Railroad Operator and his Passengers at 2pm. William Still’s 800-page tome The Underground Railroad was based on records he kept while working as a secretary at the Vigilance Committee of the Pennsylvania Anti-Slavery Society. Learn about his personal history, the passengers he assisted in Philadelphia, and why this is such a vital record.
Sundays | February 4 and 18
  • Guided Tours of the Exhibit Hall at noon and 3 p.m. Enjoy a guided tour of the exhibit hall and gain a deeper understanding of Tubman’s formative years.
  • The Eastern Shore of Maryland and the Underground Railroad at 1pm to 2pm. Join a park ranger and learn about the landscape of the Eastern Shore of Maryland and how it was an integral part of the Underground Railroad for Freedom seekers.
Daily in February:
  • Junior Ranger Activity: Request a Junior Ranger activity booklet from the front desk, complete the activities using the exhibits, and take the Junior Ranger pledge with a park ranger. Receive a junior ranger patch as a reminder to discover, learn, and protect our natural, cultural, historical, and recreational resources.
  • Exhibits: Immerse yourself in Tubman’s world through informative, evocative and emotive exhibits that explain how the landscape of the Choptank River region shaped Tubman’s early years and the importance of her faith, family and community.
  • They Called Her Moses: Learn about Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad in Dorchester County, Maryland by watching the Outdoors Maryland feature about the Visitor Center.
18 12, 2017

Tubman Visitor Center – 1st Anniversary Weekend March 10-11, 2018

Since opening in March 2017, the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center has welcomed nearly 100,000 visitors from all 50 states and over 60 countries. Save the date and plan to join in the celebration during their one-year anniversary weekend on March 10-11, 2018.

Dates: March 10-11, 2018, 9am to 5pm

Location: Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad State Park and Visitor Center, Church Creek, MD

The weekend will feature family-friendly activities including:

  • Performance by Millicent Sparks, a Harriet Tubman re-enactor
  • An immersive Underground Railroad experience led by Tony Cohen of the Menare Foundation
  • Lectures by Dr. Kate Clifford Larson, the park’s historical consultant and author of an acclaimed Tubman biography
  • Junior Ranger programs led by park rangers
  • A viewing of the short film Carry Me Home, about Harriet Tubman’s final journey on the Underground Railroad
  • A presentation by Chris Elcock, senior associate at GWWO, Inc., Architects, the team behind the design of the Visitor Center

Event details will be available in mid-January.

ADDRESS: 4068 Golden Hill Rd., Church Creek, Md 21622

5 12, 2017

The Landscape as the Underground Railroad – Talk Dec. 7

Hear an Interpretive Program from a National Park Service ranger from 2 to 3pm on Thursday, Dec. 7, inside the Multi-Purpose room at the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center, and learn how the landscape of Maryland’s Eastern Shore provided opportunities for escape for freedom seekers.

This program is free and open to the public.

ADDRESS: 4068 Golden Hill Road, Church Creek, Maryland 21622

5 12, 2017

Nature’s Role in the Flight to Freedom – Talk Dec. 6

When Harriet Tubman set off to find her freedom, summertime was in the past. In fact, many of her rescues were made in the fall or winter, making conditions much more extreme. In addition to finding her way while keeping herself and her charges hidden, these passengers needed to eat.

Adapted from the Adkins Arboretum walking tour about “nature’s role in the flight to freedom,” Julianna Pax will share “Walking the Tubman Trail” on Wednesday, December 6 at noon. Mrs. Pax, a volunteer docent at Adkins as well as the Heritage Museums will lead the viewers, virtually, through a countryside with which Harriet would be familiar. While diminished greatly, the flora and fauna found today on the eastern shore is very close to what it was almost 200 years ago.

This presentation and discussion will work to enlighten about the types of foods that are readily available in the forest, even today. In addition, this discussion will only enhance our understanding of those who fled the institution of slavery, while, in many cases, leaving the only home they had ever know.

This offering is free and open to the public although donations are always appreciated. The Heritage Museums and Gardens of Dorchester is located at 1003 Greenway Drive in Cambridge, MD. For more information, call 410-228-7953.

19 11, 2017

First Day Hike in Tubman Country Jan. 1

On January 1, 2018 in Dorchester County, Maryland, bring family and friends and hike the landscape that shaped Harriet Tubman’s life with a park ranger. Hikers will meet at the parking lot on the grounds of the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center. The hike is a 1.5 mile trail at Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge’s Wildlife Drive along the Blackwater River. The hike will end with a guided tour of the visitor center. Registration is required; call the park to sign up at 410-221-2290.

Hosted by the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Historical Park. This is a free event.

ADDRESS: 4068 Golden Hill Road, Church Creek, Maryland 21622

5 10, 2017

Atlanta woman is first to walk the Tubman Byway

When Mashona Council arrived in Dorchester County from where she lives in Atlanta, Georgia, she didn’t expect much attention. Her mission to walk the entire Maryland portion of the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway was a personal challenge and a spiritual quest. But her 125-mile “Freedom Walk,” carrying the spirit of Harriet Tubman, inspired thousands as people learned of her quest through social media. She began her walk in Cambridge on Sept. 17, the same day that Tubman attempted her first escape from slavery back in 1849. She finished seven days later as she crossed the line from Maryland into Delaware.

9 09, 2017

Slave Dwelling Project in Dorchester Oct. 13-14

In celebration of the rich African American heritage of Dorchester County, Maryland, the “Slave Dwelling Project Comes to Dorchester” Oct. 13-14 will bring attention to little known county historic structures that once served as dwelling houses, churches or other cultural and utilitarian uses in the lives of African Americans. This project will feature Joseph McGill of the Slave Dwelling Project and “Inalienable Rights,” a living history troupe representing enslaved African Americans of the 19th century. Combined participants will sleep overnight at the Bayley House Slave Cabin in Cambridge, Maryland, and then in the Handsell Slave Chamber in Vienna, Maryland.

With an impressive group of partners, the project will also provide an opportunity for the public to have discussions guided by members of Coming to the Table about the history and legacy of enslavement in the United States. The weekend includes multiple events at various sites around the county, discussions led by members of the National Coming to the Table organization, living history re enactors, music and other historic demonstrations suitable for visitors of all ages. Both Friday evening and Saturday events are FREE and open to the public.

  • The event will begin Friday evening October 13 with a “Candlelight Remembrance” at the Cambridge Court House and Bayley Slave Cabin. This event will include introductory presentations and live vocal performances based on Negro Spirituals by soloists Karen Somerville and Melissa Wise Slacum. Ms. Somerville has performed widely from New York through Maryland and is best known for her jazz interpretations and historical performances of songs relating to black history. Mrs. Slacum is local to Dorchester and has performed for many years at local events and venues. Guest attending the Friday evening event will be given battery operated “candles” to light as the names of once enslaved individuals are read by both descendants to those enslaved and slave holders. A procession of participants and attendees will proceed from the Court House to the Bayley Slave Cabin at the privately owned Bayley House on High Street, where the event will conclude with more songs and inspirational words. Refreshments will follow.
  • On Saturday, Oct. 14, a living history event at Handsell, a historic home undergoing restoration, will feature two presentations and discussions (morning and afternoon) led by members of ComingToTheTable.org. Other planned activities for Saturday at Handsell include presentations by “Inalienable Rights,” an African American living history troupe, representing early African American crafts people, story tellers and food historians.
  • The public will have the opportunity to see cooking demonstrations in the Handsell Kitchen over open fire, where both free and enslaved people of color once worked and lived. Jerome Bias will be interpreting an African American cook and demonstrating his talents at the newly restored Kitchen cook fireplace. One reason Mr. Bias sleeps overnight in slave dwellings and cooks at the living history programs is so children and youth will see their ancestors—will see enslaved people—as human beings with fully rounded lives, not just suffering stereotypes.
  • Other living history re enactors will include music, storytelling and a 19th century “laundress,” Roberta Perkins.
  • Another Highlight of the day at Handsell will be two presentations by Karen Somerville and her group “Sombarkin.” Karen Somerville is a recording artist and producer performing gospel, blues, jazz, R&B, folk, and the arrangements for the acappella trio Sombarkin’ (sum-bar-kin), a group she has organized.
  • Two chicks Catering Truck will provide food and drinks at Handsell. The Chicone Village will be lively as representatives from the Pocomoke Indian Nation and Philip Goldsborough, a Nanticoke descendant will demonstrate Native Crafts. Dawn Manyfeathers of the Nanticoke Lenni Lenape will be making Native Fry Bread.
  • During the day on Saturday, The Harriet Tubman Organization will escort a morning bus tour of Dorchester County African American historic sites which will begin and end at the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center and will include a stop at Handsell for the Coming to the Table talk. The bus tour will help promote Dorchester County Tourism and highlight important African American historic sites.

Slave Dwelling Project Comes to Dorchester is considered an educational event, brought to the public to increase the community’s knowledge of our local history and heritage, historic preservation and the contributions made by little know individuals from the past.

The event is brought to the public by the following Partners and Sponsors: Harriet Tubman Organization, Nanticoke Historic Preservation Alliance, Slave Dwelling Project, Coming to the Table, Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center, Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Historical Park, National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom, Dorchester Arts Center, Elks Lodge #223, 106.3 The Heat WCEM FM, Healing Hands Animal Hospital and The Drug Store, Hurlock, MD
For all information go to: www.restorehandsell.org

9 08, 2017

Harriet Tubman: Defender is Sept. 16-17

Heralds of Hope Theater Company presents Harriet Tubman: Defender on Saturday, Sept 16 at 6pm and Sunday, Sept. 17 at 3pm. This is a powerful presentation of Harriet Tubman’s life and journey on the Underground Railroad told in narrative and song. Written and directed by Percy W. Thomas, this one-woman play depicts Harriet Tubman at the age of 50 reflecting back on her childhood memories and proclaiming her future. Through narrative, song, and visual projections, the audience experiences both the pain and elation of Harriet’s being freed from the bounds of slavery, and how she became one of the most famous women in the history of the United States.

The performance happens at the ArtBar at Liv Again, 317 High Street (second floor) in downtown Cambridge, MD. Tickets: For adults, $20 in advance, $25 at the door. For groups, $15 in advance, $20 at the door. For students, $10 in advance, $15 at the door. Buy tickets in advance.

ADDRESS: 317 High St., Cambridge, MD 21613

14 07, 2017

Harriet Tubman featured in new mural in Cambridge

Harriet Tubman is featured in a new mural near the corner of Maryland Avenue and Route 50 in Cambridge, Maryland. The mural is the newest in a series of murals in Dorchester County, Maryland, where Tubman was born into slavery around 1822.

The mural highlights Cambridge’s rich African-American history, culture and heritage, particularly in the community around Pine Street, which is one of the oldest African-American communities in the country. The 11-foot-by-48-foot mural was created by artist Michael Rosato, whose studio is in downtown Cambridge. Rosato’s work is featured in museums, public spaces and private residences across the country.

The mural includes some of Dorchester’s most well-known citizens — Harriet Tubman, the most famous “conductor” of the Underground Railroad in the mid-1800s, and Gloria Richardson Dandridge, a key figure in the civil rights movement in the 1960s — as well as ordinary citizens such as a bricklayer, a barber, and a baker.

“At the center of the mural is Harriet Tubman, who is a symbol of courage, hard work, perseverance, and loyalty to her family and community,” said the mural artist, Michael Rosato. “Everything radiates out from her, from her heart and center.”

The mural is just the beginning of a larger plan to design and develop this corner, which is being considered the “gateway” to Cambridge’s downtown area.

The mural was funded through a grant from the Maryland Heritage Areas Authority and the Federal Highway Administration, and is one of a series of murals throughout Dorchester County that are part of the Chesapeake Country Mural Trail. Find out more about the mural trail.

13 07, 2017

Harriet Tubman Performance by Millicent Sparks July 21

Harriet Tubman re-enactor Millicent Sparks performs at the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center on Friday, July 21 at 3:30pm. She gives a powerful, moving, inspiring performance. She also performed during the grand opening of the Tubman Visitor Center in March 2017.  Free admission (both to the performance and the visitor center), and there’s no need to reserve a spot.

The Tubman Visitor Center is Site #13 along the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway, a self-guided driving tour that winds for 125 miles through Dorchester and Caroline Counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. Find out more about the Byway.

ADDRESS: 4068 Golden Hill Road, Church Creek, MD

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