Harriet Tubman Biography
Life After the War
When the Civil War first broke out, Harriet Tubman predicted that the war would finally bring an end to slavery in the United States. Harriet did everything she could during the war to see that the Union was victorious and her prophesy came true. Prior to the war, Harriet's identity was somewhat secret. Few knew the real identity of the "Moses" who rescued so many slaves on the Underground Railroad. However, Harriet's exploits as a spy leader and her role in the Combahee River Raid had made her somewhat famous. Military leaders and politicians alike were aware of this remarkable escaped slave and her contribution to the war effort.
The Civil War Ends
The Civil War ended in the spring of 1865. By the end of the year, the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution was ratified, abolishing slavery in the United States. Harriet was no doubt excited and relieved that slavery had finally come to an end. She would no longer have to make daring raids into the South to help free her family and friends.
After the war, Harriet continued to serve as a nurse for the Union, helping wounded soldiers recover and former slaves acclimate to their new life. When supplies became scarce in the post-war camps, Harriet traveled to Washington D.C. to explain the situation and request help for the veterans. Although she received all sorts of promises from politicians, the supplies and aide never arrived. Frustrated with government bureaucracy, Harriet decided to return home to Auburn, NY to take care of her aging parents.
When Harriet hopped on the train home to Auburn, NY, she did so as a free woman. She didn't have to disguise herself or sneak through the woods at night, she could ride the train like everyone else...or could she? While passing through New Jersey, the train conductor determined that Harriet's military papers were forged (they weren't) and told her she must move to another car. She refused. Several men then drug her from the car and threw her into the baggage area, breaking her arm. Harriet may have been free, she may have helped to win the war, but she still couldn't ride the train like a white person.
Auburn, New York
Once back in New York, Harriet turned her attention to the poor and hungry who lived in her city and the surrounding areas. She took what funds she had and used them to help the crippled, blind, and homeless. She even used her home as a place for the poor to stay. Harriet spent much of the rest of her life championing the causes of the poor and needy.
As a strong woman who played a major role in the Civil War, Harriet was often called upon to speak at women's rights meetings. She worked alongside women such as Susan B. Anthony at suffrage conventions and was known as a powerful speaker. Harriet fought not only for equal rights for African Americans, but also for women. She felt strongly that women of all races should have the right to vote.
Harriet Tubman Biography Contents
- Overview and Interesting Facts
- Born into Slavery
- Early Life as a Slave
- Dreaming About Freedom
- The Escape!
- The Underground Railroad
- Freedom and the First Rescue
- The Conductor
- The Legend Grows
- Harper's Ferry and the Civil War Begins
- Life as a Spy
- Life After the War
- Later Life and Death