The Underground Railroad

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Many slaves have escaped through the course of history, each pursuing freedom in various ways. While some were successful, others ended in failure and were punished severely. Some made it through pure luck while others went through careful planning.

The first and most common escape strategy was through music. “The riverbank makes a very good road...left foot, peg foot...follow the drinking gourd...the first quail calls…” (Metrolyrics, Nov. 14) The Drinking Gourd, or the Big Dipper suggests to go north and “the first quail calls” implies that one should flee during the winter months, due to the Ohio River freezing up, thus allowing the fugitives to cross. The code woven into these lyrics provide tips and information, essential for escapes. People were able to communicate these while laboring in fields.

Another method used was disguising oneself, allowing slaves to pass under any
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This was a network of abolitionists, the majority being black. “Various routes were lines, stopping places were called stations, those who aided along the way were conductors and their charges were known as packages or freight.” (History, Nov. ) The underground railroad was a vast and connected system of escape for slaves. Slaves, directed by “conductors” would be directed to different houses and “stations” that provided a safe shelter and food. Even when they’ve reached the point where people are supportive and willing to help, the slaves are not entirely out of harm’s way. Their wits had to remain about them in order to truly escape slavery. No matter how intricate or simplistic, all of these strategies had one aim. Freedom. No matter what race, gender, or ethnicity, humans all seek freedom. One tends to let pride get in the way of freedom and equality. Slavery results from pride. Everyone has pride. Everyone seeks freedom. When put in the right circumstances, is it wrong to say that all are the
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