Pathways to Freedom: Maryland and the Underground Railroad
About the Underground Railroad
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Why did we have an Underground Railroad in the United States?

We had an Underground Railroad because we had slavery. We had an Underground Railroad because many people wanted to escape from slavery and because other people wanted to help them. Enslaved persons lived a very unhappy life, often facing great cruelty and physical danger. It is natural that those who were enslaved wanted to escape. Many people who were free believed that slavery was wrong and so they put themselves in danger to help people escape slavery and become free.

Flyer announcing slaves for sale
Enslaved people were bought and sold like ordinary property, like a chair or a cart.

In order to understand why people organized the Underground Railroad, you have to know about slavery. Click on the question below to learn about slavery and the life of enslaved persons and free blacks in Maryland.

What was life like for enslaved people and free blacks?

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