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Saltwater Underground Railroad Experience Added to Underground Railroad Network to Freedom.

National Park Service Announces 19 Additions to the Underground Railroad Network to Freedom in 10 states.

Sites of daring escapes and places of refuge are among the 19 new listings added to the National Park Service's National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom. The announcement was made today by National Park Service Director Chuck Sams during a National Park Week event at Mission San José in San Antonio Missions National Historical Park.

The National Park Service’s National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom accepted the Saltwater Underground Railroad Experience Program Website, as one of 19 new listings, from the 47th round of applications, representing sites and programs in 10 states across the United States. These new listings, alongside more than 780 sites, facilities, and programs already in the Network, provide insight into the diverse experiences of freedom seekers who bravely escaped slavery and allies who assisted them.

The Saltwater Underground Railroad Experience, developed in 2017 by Bahamian environmental scientist and educator Stefan Moss, is a free, web-based Google Earth virtual tour and website that takes visitors on a journey along the lesser-known southern route of the Underground Railroad to sites across the Southeastern United States and The

Bahama Islands where enslaved Africans fled and ventured in search of freedom. The tour is

accessible to anyone with internet access and is formatted for desktop as well as mobile use.

Sixteen key locations are highlighted on the virtual tour and as visitors navigate from site to site

using the table of contents, a separate window opens providing photos and text with embedded

links to external archival documents, news and peer reviewed articles that tell the stories of the

freedom seekers. Using Google Earth's interactive satellite imagery and user-friendly Street

View feature, visitors are also able to view each location in three dimensions, zoom in and out to

explore landscapes in detail.

"For the past 25 years, our national program has been devoted to safeguarding and documenting

stories of freedom.” says Robin Krawitz, acting National Program Manager. "Today, we stand at

a pivotal moment that signals the dawn of a fresh chapter in our quest to honor the courage and

tenacity of countless known and unknown freedom seekers across a myriad of sites, programs,

and facilities. In this latest round of nominations, we shine a spotlight on 14 distinctive locations

and 5 new programs, illuminating the brave odysseys of those who pursued their freedom and the

allies who stood by them. Welcoming these 19 new additions to our extensive collection of over

780 listings, we are reminded that the pursuit of freedom is a mosaic imbued with bravery,

resilience, and interracial solidarity. Together, we persist in unraveling and commemorating the

profound heritage of the Underground Railroad, inspiring future generations to champion the

principles of liberty and justice for all."

The National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom serves to honor, preserve, and promote

the history of resistance to enslavement through escape and flight, which continues to inspire

people worldwide. The Network currently represents over 750 locations in 40 states, plus

Washington D.C., the U.S. Virgin Islands and Canada. Through its mission, the Network to

Freedom helps to advance the idea that all human beings embrace the right to self-determination

and freedom from oppression.

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