In the bible, it was Moses who led the Israelites out of Egypt and across the Red Sea so they could escape death. During the time when slavery was prominent, a fearless Underground Railroad “conductor” emerged to help others gain their freedom that she was known as “Moses of her people.” Her name was Harriet Tubman.

Before She Became Harriet Tubman

Born somewhere between 1820 and 1822 in Dorchester County, Maryland, Araminta Ross was born into slavery. Her parents, Harriet Green and Benjamin Ross had 9 children, including Araminta, whom they fondly called Minty. When she was five, her owner rented her out as a house servant. When she was twelve, she tried to intervene when her master was beating an enslaved man who tried to escape. Her head was hit with a two-pound weight that caused her to abruptly lose consciousness and a lifetime of severe headaches. In 1844, she entered a marital union with a free black man named John Tubman. She took his last name and then his mother’s first name and called herself Harriet Tubman.

Transporting Slaves

It all started when 1849, Harriet and two of her brothers escaped in fear of being sold. For reasons still unknown, her brothers changed their minds and went back, which forced her to come back with them. However, that didn’t last long as Harriet escaped again after a few months, this time on her own. She left behind her husband and family and used the Underground Railroad to make her way north through Delaware and Pennsylvania. She would stop periodically at a series of hideouts either to rest or to hide. She escaped successfully, but when she heard that her nieces were to be sold, she returned to save them. That started her journey of saving slaves through the tunnel, which ended up with two dozens of missions throughout her life.

According to History, “One of the most complicated myths about Tubman is the claim (first mentioned in a 19th-century biography) that she escorted more than 300 enslaved people to freedom over the course of 19 missions. Tubman herself never used this number; instead, she estimated that she had rescued around 50 people by 1860—mostly family members.