Three influential leaders of the 19th century Underground Railroad Movement will be brought to life with song and spirit in a free performance at Saint Stephen Episcopal Cathedral, 221 N. Front Street, Harrisburg, on Sunday, March 10, at 4 PM.
“Leaders & Liberators” tells the story of an imagined meeting in Cape May, New Jersey on Independence Day, 1872, when famed Underground Railroad conductor Harriet Tubman met with Stephen Smith and William Whipper, courageous conductors and agents who led hundreds – possibly thousands — of formerly enslaved Africans to freedom through the network of the Underground Railroad, from the 1830s through the 1850s.
In a one-hour dramatic reading, Raquel Richardson will portray the character of Ms. Tubman, while Mr. Whipper will be brought to life by Lenwood Sloane and Nelson Polite, Jr. will animate Stephen Smith, all experienced stage performers. The script was inspired by well-documented events in the lives of these three leaders and liberators. Scriptwriters are Lancaster residents Randolph and the Rev. Martha Harris.
Whipper (1804-1876) and Smith (c. 1796-1873) were successful entrepreneurs in the lumber industry in Columbia, Lancaster County. They were brothers-in-law and became among the wealthiest Black business owners and operators in America before the Civil War. They were contemporaries of Ms. Tubman (c.1820-1913), who led scores of her friends and family members out of bondage from Maryland in the 1850s, earning her the beloved persona as The Moses of Her People.
All are invited to attend this free community event, which honors the life and legacy of Harriet Tubman on the 111th Anniversary of her death. For more information, call (717) 236-4059 or firstname.lastname@example.org.