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In the 19th century, American abolitionists created the Underground Railroad to provide slaves with a means of escaping their bondage. Traveling at night from one home or church (referred to as stations) to the next, they slowly made their way north to freedom following the big dipper and the north star. Harriet Beecher Stowe, author of Uncle Tom's Cabin, witnessed the evils of slavery first-hand while living in Cincinnati. This led her to visit the home of abolitionist John Rankin in Ripley, Ohio. While there, she interviewed several former slaves who had escaped to freedom along the Underground Railroad. Many of the characters in her novel mirrored these real-life individuals. The Big Dipper or drinking gourd, in the night sky guided the slaves on their perilous journey to the north.
September 2nd, 2015
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