Suzanne Scoggins, Director of Women's History

by Suzanne Scoggins, Director of Women's History
March 10, 2011 · Comments Off  

Today is the 98th anniversary of Harriet Tubman’s death in 1913. The date was designated as national Harriet Tubman Day in 1990.

(Actually, right now every day is Harriet Tubman Day here at EVE, what with the Maryland legislature considering the bill to put Tubman in Statuary Hall. And this would be a perfect time to call some committee members.)

Here’s the bill signed into law by President George H.W. Bush in 1990:

PUBLIC LAW 101-252 –MAR. 13, 1990 104 STAT. 99


Joint Resolution
To designate March 10, 1990, as “Harriet Tubman Day”

Whereas Harriet Ross Tubman was born into slavery in Bucktown, Maryland, in or around the year 1820;

Whereas she escaped slavery in 1849 and became a “conductor” on the Underground Railroad;

Whereas she undertook a reported nineteen trips as a conductor, endeavoring despite great hardship and great danger to lead hundreds of slaves to freedom;

Whereas Harriet Tubman became an eloquent and effective speaker on behalf of the movement to abolish slavery;

Whereas she served in the Civil War as a soldier, spy, nurse, scout, and cook, and as a leader in working with newly freed slaves;

Whereas after the War, she continued to fight for human dignity, human rights, opportunity, and justice; and

Whereas Harriet Tubman—whose courageous and dedicated pursuit of the promise of American ideals and common principles of humanity continues to serve and inspire all people who cherish freedom—died at her home in Auburn, New York, on March 10, 1913; Now, therefore, be it

Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That March 10, 1990 be designated as “Harriet Tubman Day,” to be observed by the people of the United States with appropriate ceremonies and activities.

Approved March 13, 1990.

Congressional record, Vol. 136 (1990):
Mar. 6, considered and passed Senate.
Mar. 7, considered and passed House.

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