4.4: The Underground Railroad

Where was slavery in the United States in 1850?

Step 1: Go to the ArcGIS Online map, The Underground Railroad, and explore the map.

Step 2: With the Details button underlined, click the bottom Show Legend.

  • Which states allowed slavery?
  • Which areas were the most enslaved?
  • What factors influenced these areas being mostly enslaved?

Where did the rivers meet together?

Step 3: Click the button, Content.

Step 4: Click the button, Bookmarks. Select Underground Railroad.

Step 5: Turn on the layer, Map Notes. Open and read the Map Note located in Northern Michigan.

  • Why did rivers make good escape routes?

Step 6: Filter the US Rivers layer so that FOLLOW is set to YES. With the Details button underlined, hover over the layer name. Click the Filter button. Set the Filter parameters.

  • The intersection was a key destination because it bordered slave and free states, and had long, wide rivers. (T/F)

Step 7: Remove the filter.

Where were the Underground Railroad stations located?

Step 8: Turn on the Notable Underground Railroad Stations layer.

  • What patterns do you notice about the station locations?
  • Which stations were located farthest north?

Step 9: Click the two purple stations.

  • What type of stations were these?

How did runaway slaves travel to freedom?

Step 10: Turn on the layer, Routes.

  • What patterns do you notice about these networks?

Step 11: Turn off the layer, Stations.

Step 12: Turn on the layer, Windsor.

Step 13: Use the Measure tool to answer the questions below. Most runaway slaves came from border states because of distance.

  • How far is the Ohio River from Windsor?
  • How far is the Ohio River from the mouth of the Mississippi River?
  • How far is Windsor from the mouth of the Mississippi River?

Why was the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 passed?

The Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 made it a crime in the United States to assist runaway slaves. The Underground Railroad contributed to Southern lawmakers calling for a stricter fugitive slave law. The impact of the Underground Railroad was the creation of the Fugitive Slave Act, which make it riskier to help runaway slaves.

License

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World Regional Geography Lab Manual by R. Adam Dastrup, MA, GISP is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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