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Harriet Tubman's Role in the Fight for Racial Equality and Civil Rights

Words: 1570 | Pages: 7

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Harriet Tubman, a legendary figure in American history, played a pivotal role in the fight for racial equality and civil rights. Born into slavery in the early 1820s, Tubman would go on to become one of the most prominent abolitionists and activists of her time. Her incredible bravery, determination, and unwavering commitment to justice led her to rescue hundreds of enslaved individuals through the Underground Railroad. She actively participated in the women's suffrage movement and fought for equal rights for African Americans during Reconstruction. In this essay, we will explore Harriet Tubman's remarkable life journey and examine how her actions continue to inspire generations striving for equality today.


Early life and escape from slavery

This traumatic incident not only left Tubman with lifelong physical ailments but also caused her to experience vivid dreams and visions which she believed were messages from God. These spiritual encounters would later guide her actions as she navigated the treacherous path towards freedom.

In 1849, facing the possibility of being sold away from her family, Tubman made the courageous decision to escape slavery. With little more than determination and an unwavering desire for freedom, she embarked on a dangerous journey through the Underground Railroad—a network of secret routes and safe houses established by abolitionists to help slaves reach free states or Canada.

Tubman's escape marked not only her own liberation but also signaled the beginning of her extraordinary role as a conductor on the Underground Railroad. Returning repeatedly to Maryland over several years, often under cover of darkness and guided by starlight, Tubman successfully led numerous slaves—estimated at around 70 people—to freedom in Canada.
Through these daring rescues and acts of defiance against an oppressive system, Harriet Tubman became known as "Moses" among those who sought liberty. Her ability to navigate danger-filled terrain while eluding slave catchers demonstrated both resourcefulness and immense bravery.

By escaping herself and leading others to their freedom along perilous paths despite great personal risk, Harriet Tubman laid the foundation for her future activism in fighting for racial equality and civil rights. Her early life experiences served as motivation for advocating against slavery's injustices—an unwavering commitment that would shape the course of her life and ultimately inspire countless others in their own fight for freedom.


Underground Railroad and leading enslaved individuals to freedom

Tubman's leadership qualities were evident throughout her missions as well. She possessed an unwavering determination that inspired trust and confidence among those who sought liberation under her guidance. Despite facing constant threats to their lives, Tubman never lost a single passenger on any of her daring journeys—a testament not only to her physical prowess but also to her exceptional skills as a strategist.

Tubman's efforts went beyond just leading people to freedom; she provided them with support and assistance even after they reached free states or Canada. She helped them find employment opportunities, access education for themselves and their children, and build new lives away from the shackles of slavery.

Harriet Tubman's tireless efforts as a conductor on the Underground Railroad rescued countless individuals from bondage while striking fear into the hearts of enslavers across America. Her bravery in risking capture or death for herself and others demonstrated an unyielding commitment to justice that remains unmatched in history. By leading enslaved individuals out of oppression towards liberty through perilous journeys filled with uncertainty, Harriet Tubman became an enduring symbol of hope for those fighting for racial equality and civil rights.


Role as a spy during the Civil War

Harriet Tubman played an indelible role in the fight for racial equality and civil rights throughout various stages of American history. From escaping slavery herself to leading others along treacherous paths towards freedom through the Underground Railroad; from serving as a spy during the Civil War to actively participating in women's suffrage movement after its conclusion - Tubman consistently demonstrated determination, bravery, and an unwavering commitment towards justice. Her actions continue to inspire generations striving for equality today while reminding us of our collective responsibility to uphold basic human rights regardless of race or gender.


Efforts in women's suffrage movement

In addition to her significant contributions in the fight against slavery, Harriet Tubman also played a vital role in the women's suffrage movement. After the abolition of slavery with the passage of the Thirteenth Amendment, Tubman recognized that freedom alone was not enough to secure equality for African Americans and women. She understood that true empowerment required political rights and representation.

Tubman joined forces with prominent suffragists such as Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton, advocating for equal voting rights for all citizens regardless of their gender or race. Despite facing discrimination from some white suffragists who prioritized their own cause over racial equality, Tubman remained undeterred in her pursuit of justice for all.

Her experiences as an enslaved woman gave her unique insights into both forms of oppression—racial discrimination and gender inequality—and she used her platform to speak out against these injustices. Tubman's efforts helped lay the groundwork for future generations of activists fighting for gender equality and civil rights.

Harriet Tubman's remarkable life journey encompassed not only her courageous actions on the Underground Railroad but also her advocacy work in advancing women's suffrage. Her unwavering commitment to justice and tireless efforts continue to inspire people around the world today as they strive towards achieving racial equality and civil rights for all. As we reflect on Tubman's legacy, let us remember that one person's determination can make an immense impact on society by challenging oppressive systems and paving a path towards a more just world.


Legacy as a symbol of bravery and determination

Tubman's legacy also extends into the realm of women's rights. As an African American woman, she faced not only racial oppression but also gender discrimination. Despite these intersecting challenges, Tubman fearlessly advocated for women's suffrage and equal rights alongside prominent figures like Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton. Her efforts paved the way for future generations of women to assert their voices and demand equal treatment.

In addition to being recognized as a trailblazer in civil rights movements, Tubman has been honored through various means throughout history. In 2016, it was announced that she would replace Andrew Jackson on the front of the $20 bill—an acknowledgment not only of her contributions but also as a powerful representation of diversity and progress in America.
Harriet Tubman's role in the fight for racial equality and civil rights cannot be overstated. Her early life experiences fueled her passion for justice, leading her to become a conductor on the Underground Railroad where she risked everything to lead enslaved individuals to freedom. Her legacy serves as an inspiration for future generations who continue to strive towards creating a more just and equitable society.


Impact on the fight for racial equality and civil rights

Harriet Tubman's impact on the fight for racial equality and civil rights extended far beyond her work on the Underground Railroad. She continued to be an active advocate for equal rights even after slavery was abolished with the passage of the 13th Amendment in 1865. Tubman actively participated in the women's suffrage movement, recognizing that gender equality was essential to achieving true racial equality.

Tubman also played a significant role during Reconstruction, working tirelessly to secure land and resources for newly freed African Americans. She advocated for educational opportunities, healthcare access, and economic empowerment for her community. Her dedication to ensuring that former slaves had a chance at building prosperous lives despite systemic racism laid the foundation for future generations' fight against discrimination.

Harriet Tubman's legacy continues to inspire activists fighting for racial equality today. Her fearless determination and unwavering commitment serve as a reminder that one individual can make a profound difference in challenging societal norms and advocating for justice. Tubman's life story is often used as an example of courage and resilience in classrooms across America, educating young minds about both historical struggles and ongoing battles against racism.

Harriet Tubman's remarkable journey from slavery to freedom exemplifies her tireless efforts in advancing the fight for racial equality and civil rights. Through her actions on the Underground Railroad, leadership qualities, advocacy during Reconstruction, and lasting legacy as an inspirational figurehead, she left an indelible mark on American history. Harriet Tubman serves as a symbol of hope and perseverance—a reminder that through bravery and collective action, progress towards true equality can be achieved.



Harriet Tubman's role in the fight for racial equality and civil rights cannot be overstated. Her extraordinary life journey from slavery to freedom and her subsequent efforts to lead others out of bondage have left an indelible mark on American history. Tubman's unwavering commitment to justice, her courage in the face of danger, and her relentless pursuit of freedom continue to inspire generations striving for equality today.

Tubman's contributions extended beyond just rescuing enslaved individuals; she actively participated in the women's suffrage movement and fought for equal rights for African Americans during Reconstruction. She was a vocal advocate for education, economic empowerment, and political representation for African Americans—a vision that still resonates today as we work towards achieving true equality.

Harriet Tubman's legacy is one of resilience, determination, and unwavering belief in the inherent worth and dignity of every individual. Her heroic actions continue to serve as a powerful reminder that one person can make an immense difference in the struggle against oppression. As we reflect on Tubman's remarkable life and accomplishments, let us draw inspiration from her example as we strive towards creating a more just society where all individuals are afforded equal rights and opportunities regardless of race or background.

Work Cited


But I must explain to you how all this mistaken idea of denouncing pleasure and praising pain was born and I will give you a complete account of the system, and expound the actual teachings of the great explorer of the truth, the master-builder of human happiness.


"At vero eos et accusamus et iusto odio dignissimos ducimus qui blanditiis praesentium voluptatum deleniti atque corrupti quos dolores et quas molestias excepturi sint occaecati cupiditate non provident."


"On the other hand, we denounce with righteous indignation and dislike men who are so beguiled and demoralized by the charms of pleasure of the moment, so blinded by desire, that they cannot foresee the pain and trouble that are bound to ensue."

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