The Untold History of the Underground Railroad 

Racism and slavery is and always will be a topic or conversation or even arguments. Although slavery is nonexistent racism is very much still alive in today’s culture. The underground railroad is a topic that is not uncommon as we have grown up learning about it. The daring acts of all those who participated in aiding fugitive slaves are nothing less of astonishing. Even though we have resources available surrounding the underground railroad subject, Foner’s Gateway to Freedom allows the reader to rethink the underground railroad.

Given the time, the only way for anyone to know what transpired is if there was documentation of it or some sort of trace. What is accessible regarding the matter is in fact not all.

Foner’s Gateway to Freedom focuses on the underground railroad more more importantly the events that transpired in New York City. During the times of slavery New York prided themselves stating that their slavery had been a mild and relatively benevolent institution (Foner, 29).

In turn, New York became grounds for fugitive seeking freedom from slavery. As the numbers multiplied so did the eagerness to run away. There were many challenges that stood in fugitives way especially since there were groups, including authorities, that were dedicated to capturing slaves. Being as uneducated as they were, one thing remained clear for slaves, freedom must be attained one way or another.

It is easy to think that our history has been accurately interpreted. However, that is not the case. Given the lack of education of many followed no means to keep track of much during the escapes of many blacks.

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There are many sources available to provide with the common facts of what transpired during the underground railroad era, but again those are just common. One thing Foner utilized to facilitate readers with additional information is by using sources that has not been used before due to the lack of resources. Foner references Sydney Howard Gay’s recounts of how many slaves whom went through his office. Only as off recently no one else really knew that his manuscripts were even available. His records show over 200 runaways that passed through New York and were undertaken by himself and his associates (Foner 10).

Due to the number of slaves escaping possibly horrendous living conditions, the need for their owners to recapture them only increased. Slaves were just property to their owners and nothing more. During these times, recapturing their slaves increased. In order to fight off these kidnappings, the New York Committee of Vigilance was created. This organization was a committee that fought off or attempted to fight off the kidnapping of free blacks and children being sold in southern slavery (Foner, 2).

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The Untold History of the Underground Railroad . (2022, Feb 11). Retrieved from

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