Ft. Pickens added to National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom

Posted on October 12, 2020 by Staff reports


Fort Pickens, located at Gulf Islands National Seashore, is a newly accepted Network to Freedom site which helps to challenge perspectives of what sites are part of the Underground Railroad narrative.  Photo by Romi White

The National Park Service’s National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom accepted 13 new listings from its 40th round of applications, representing sites and programs in eight states across the United States. These new listings, which join 650+ sites, facilities, and programs in the Network, were accepted in the final days of September, which represented International Underground Railroad Month in 11 states.

Twice per calendar year, the Network to Freedom reviews and accepts applications from sites, facilities, and programs with verified connections to the Underground Railroad. Diane Miller, the National Program Manager, says, “We have a unique opportunity to work with incredible people bringing little known stories to light.” The Network to Freedom’s newest listings include:

  • Castillo (Castillo de San Marcos National Monument, NPS) [site, FL]
  • Fort Pickens (Gulf Islands National Seashore, NPS) [site, FL]
  • Denmark Cemetery [site, IA]
  • William Still Interpretive Center [program, MD]
  • Escape of Esther from Edgartown Harbor [site, MA]
  • John White Burial at Fairview Cemetery [site, MI]
  • URSCC Underground Railroad Driving Tour [program, MI]
  • Henry and Louisa Picquett Burials at Samarian Cemetery [site, OH]
  • Lake View Cemetery [site, OH]
  • Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church [site, OH]
  • Union Baptist Cemetery [site, OH]
  • Four Holes Swamp [site, SC]
  • Sroufe House [site, KY]

“I think people often don’t realize how many Underground Railroad stories are in their backyards,” says Miller. “I am eager to see how communities representing these new listings work together to continue to share these stories with the public.”

Network to Freedom listings are each owned and managed differently, and not all sites are open to the public. If planning a visit, make sure to perform due diligence for each Network to Freedom listing. If the site is not open to the public, we ask that the privacy of the site owner is respected.