Harriet Tubman: Notorious African American Woman

1473 words - 6 pages

Back in the 1800’s, it wasn’t very common for an African American person to be influential. However, it was extremely uncommon for an African American woman to have a significant role in society. Nonetheless, Harriet Tubman became one of the most well known African American people in history. Harriet Tubman’s brave and spirited acts have made her such an iconic figure in history today through her works of assisting hundreds of African Americans out of slavery.
Throughout her life, her courageous acts have portrayed an image of strength and generosity to those people who were in need in the times before the Civil War. She has not only become a model for all African American men and woman but also for those who are looking to help others and make a difference in the world. According to www.biography.com, Harriet Tubman “…earned the nickname “Moses” for her leadership.
The actual date of Harriet Tubman’s birth was not recorded, however it is known that she was born sometime around 1820 and 1825. She was born in Dorchester Country, Maryland. Her parents, Harriet Green and Ben Ross, gave her the birth name of Araminta Harriet Ross. Both of her parents were owned by slave owners. Harriet Tubman was one of nine children however three of her sister’s were eventually sold to other slave owners. Harriet’s childhood years were full of many difficult obstacles and hardships. Physical and mental aggression was part of Harriet and family’s everyday life. These physical pains even carried through to her later life as well. When she was just a young girl being beaten and whipped, which would cause her permanent damage to her body and health, was part of her daily life. In one incident while she was trying to protect another slave, www.pbs.org states, “The overseer picked up and threw two-pound weight…striking Tubman on the head.” These many occurrences of abuse led to many headaches, seizures and many other permanent injuries she had to endure for the rest of her life.
When Harriet Tubman became an adult, she still lived in Dorchester County, Maryland and at that time the amount of enslaved African Americans and free African Americans were about half. Although she was still enslaved, Harriet married a free black man named John Tubman in 1844. There isn’t much known about their marriage or if they had any children together. Although, it is known that around the time of her marriage to John Tubman that she officially changed her name from Araminta Harriet Ross to Harriet Tubman.
Around 1849 Harriet Tubman decided it was time for a change. She fled Maryland with her two brothers, Henry and Ben, and made her way to Philadelphia. However, when they were informed of an announcement sent out for a three hundred dollar reward for the return of Harriet and her two brothers, Henry and Ben turned around and went back. But this did not stop Harriet. She continued her journey to Philadelphia by herself to escape the bondages of slavery. Ironically, she used almost ninety...

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