The Underground Railroad Project

Funded by the Vermont Humanities Council. The following materials were compiled in 1997.

Vermont was very active in the anti-slavery movement before the Civil War. It is known that many slaves escaped through Vermont to Canada, but until recently there has not been much documentary evidence of who they were, how they escaped, what their routes were, or how they might have been hidden. Today, scholars are discovering new materials on the Underground Railroad and the Vermont Historical Society is bringing their work to teachers.

The booklet "Yours, in the cause of the slave" — is a documentary packet for teachers and students. It includes:

  • Teaching Suggestions provide standards-based activities that connect the essays, case study, and documents.
  • Documents: News clips, letters, poetry, and other useful primary source materials as well as a teaching guide to using these documents in class.
  • Case study: A brief overview of the Robinson Family of Ferrisburg, who provided shelter for many fugitives
  • Glossary: An explanation of terms commonly used in slavery and UGRR discussions
  • Bibliography: An extensive list of secondary sources, children’s sources, town histories, websites, manuscript collections, and much more

Yours, in the cause of the slave booklet for download (PDF 9.6 MB)

Additional resources include:

Anti-slavery timeline (PDF 1.2 MB)

The Black Bonnet: An activity page to accompany Louella Bryant’s story, in which 2 sisters escape slavery and pass through Vermont on their way to Canada

The UGRR debate: A discussion of disagreements regarding the UGRR, including 2 articles supporting opposing points of view

Colonization of society: A resource page examining the colonization movement

Anti-slavery movement: Resource pages examining the anti-slavery movement

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