Could Harriet Tubman be the first black person to be placed on U.S. currency notes?
The plan to put Tubman’s face on the notes was first announced whilst President Obama was still in office.
When Joe Biden, President of the United States, was appointed he looked set to resume efforts to implement the plan which was stalled during Trump’s presidency.
If the plans went ahead Harriet Tubman would replace Andrew Jackson on the U.S. $20 notes. Unfortunately there are people who may not be happy with that decision. On Monday 11th October 2021 Tubman’s statue at St. Catharines, Ont., church was found shoved over, and the face smashed.
'It's heartbreaking,' said a historian. 'Who would want to bother Harriet Tubman?'
Who was Harriet Tubman? She was an American abolitionist and activist. She escaped from slavery and helped other enslaved friends and family escape.
Born into slavery in March 1822, Tubman escaped and subsequently made some 13 missions to rescue approximately 70 enslaved people, including family and friends, using the network of antislavery activists and safe houses known as the Underground Railroad. During the American Civil War, she served as an armed scout and spy for the Union Army. In her later years, Tubman was an activist in the movement for women's suffragettes.
Born enslaved in Dorchester County, Maryland, Tubman was beaten and whipped by her various masters as a child. Early in life, she suffered a traumatic head wound when an irate overseer threw a heavy metal weight intending to hit another enslaved person, but hit her instead. The injury caused dizziness, pain, and spells of hypersomnia, which occurred throughout her life. After her injury, Tubman began experiencing strange visions and vivid dreams, which she ascribed to premonitions from God. These experiences, combined with her Methodist upbringing, led her to become devoutly religious.
In 1849, Tubman escaped to Philadelphia, only to return to Maryland to rescue her family soon after. Slowly, one group at a time, she brought relatives with her out of the state, and eventually guided dozens of other enslaved people to freedom. Traveling by night and in extreme secrecy, Tubman (or "Moses", as she was called) "never lost a passenger". After the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 was passed, she helped guide fugitives farther north into British North America (Canada), and helped newly freed enslaved people find work. Tubman met John Brown in 1858, and helped him plan and recruit supporters for his 1859 raid on Harpers Ferry.
When the Civil War began, Tubman worked for the Union Army, first as a cook and nurse, and then as an armed scout and spy. The first woman to lead an armed expedition in the war, she guided the raid at Combahee Ferry, which liberated more than 700 enslaved people. After the war, she retired to the family home on property she had purchased in 1859 in Auburn, New York, where she cared for her aging parents. She was active in the women's suffrage movement until illness overtook her, and she had to be admitted to a home for elderly African Americans that she had helped to establish years earlier. After her death in 1913, she became an icon of courage and freedom.
Source: NBC News