From: The Honorable Yvette D. Clarke
Sent By: eric.bolden@mail.house.gov
Bill: H.R. 1743
Date: 4/21/2015

Co-sponsor H.R. 1743 to Award the Congressional Gold Medal to Harriet Tubman, in recognition of her contributions and lifelong commitment in the fight for freedom of enslaved men, women, and children in the United States.

Current co-sponsors: Rangel, Grijalva, Van Hollen
Dear Colleague,
I invite you to co-sponsor H.R. 1743, a bill to award the Congressional Gold Medal to Harriet Tubman, an abolitionist, civil rights and women’s rights activist and military hero. She was a woman who lived in almost mythological proportions achieving much to free and save the lives of hundreds of slaves.
Following her escape from slavery in 1849, Tubman chose to compromise her own freedom by returning home to free her family and other enslaved blacks earning her the nickname “Moses”. She redirected the Underground Railroad to reach Canada following the passing of the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850 by U.S. Congress, which required law enforcement officials, even in freed states, to report runaway slaves for capture.
In 1859, Republican abolitionist William H. Seward sold Tubman a piece of land on the outskirts of Auburn, New York which she would use as a haven for family and friends and later donate a portion to the African Methodist Episcopal Church where the Harriet Tubman Home for the Aged opened in 1908.
During the Civil War, Tubman held many roles which included being an armed scout and spy for the Union army. She would go on to be the first woman in the Civil War to lead an armed expedition which resulted in the liberation of 700+ slaves during the Combahee River Raid in South Carolina earning her the moniker “General Tubman”.
The Civil War was not the end of Tubman’s fight as she would go on to tour the states to speak in promotion of women’s suffrage. Tubman’s legacy was honored most recently through a provision in the National Defense Authorization Act for 2015 establishing a Harriet Tubman National Historical Park, signed into law by President Barack Obama in 2014.
Through her unyielding devotion to those oppressed in the United States, Harriet Tubman serves as an example of leadership, resilience and self-sacrifice for generations of Americans. The Congressional Gold Medal is a fitting commemoration of her life and work. Please join me in recognizing one of our nation’s most famous 20th century pre Civil War icons. To co-sponsor H.R. 1743, please contact me or Eric Bolden on my staff at 5-6231 or eric.bolden@mail.house.gov.

Sincerely,
Yvette D. Clarke
Member of Congress