Harriet Tubman escaped from slavery on the Eastern Shore of Maryland and led dozens of people to freedom over several trips back to Maryland. Released in November 2019, Harriet, is the first feature-length film depicting Harriet’s heroism.


After a world premiere at the Toronto Internation Film Festival this fall, Harriet was released on November 1, 2019 across the country. The feature-length film released by Focus Features was directed by Kasi Lemmons and stars Cynthia Erivo as Harriet Tubman. It is the first full-length theatrical movie to illustrate the strength and courage of Tubman as she escaped from slavery only to return to Dorchester County several times to lead others to freedom. The movie is rated PG-13 but does not shy away from the harsh treatment of Harriet and her family, the greed of the plantation owners, nor the dangerous peril of escaping. Several Maryland movie theatres are showing Harriet, including the historic Charles Theatre in Baltimore.

Buckstown Village Store, 1975. Photo from Maryland Historical Trust.

Buckstown Village Store, 1975. Photo from Maryland Historical Trust.


As part of Preservation Maryland’s commitment to help tell and preserve the story of all Marylanders, the organization is partnering with the Maryland Office of Tourism to increase the number of important Underground Railroad sites in Maryland to the National Park Service’s Network to Freedom program. There are nearly two dozen private and public sites currently recognized in the Network, many of which are also part of the Harriet Tubman State Byway. The project will result in new research and refresh the interpretation of existing narratives about sites in Maryland that were part of the Underground Railroad. In addition, the project will support the interpretation and enhanced visitor services associated with sites on the Network to Freedom in Maryland. This is all to encourage an accurate, if unsettling, telling of Maryland’s role in one of America’s darkest deeds.

Visit Sites of Harriet’s Life in Maryland

Support our Network to Freedom Project