ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Maryland officials announced Tuesday the discovery of a home where enslaved people lived on the Eastern Shore farm where abolitionist Harriet Tubman was born.
Gov. Wes Moore joined local, state and federal officials at the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center in Dorchester County to announce the find.
The governor’s office said the home is believed to be that of an enslaved overseer, possibly Jerry Manokey. It follows the April 2021 announcement of the discovery of the home of Ben Ross, Tubman’s father.
“Harriet Tubman’s birthplace is sacred ground, and this discovery is part of our ongoing commitment to preserve the legacy of those who lived here,” Moore said in a news release.
Maryland Department of Transportation Chief Archaeologist Dr. Julie Schablitsky and her team have been searching for the homes of those enslaved on the Thompson Farm for more than two years. At one time, more than 40 enslaved people lived there. The recent home discovery is on private property, while the archaeological remains of Ross’s home are located on the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge.
Beneath layers of soil, archaeologists uncovered a substantial brick building foundation of the home. The excavation also revealed hundreds of artifacts.