It amazes me that many adults and children do not know about the Underground Railroad at Fort Pulaski, much less its history and origins. The Ranger began by telling us ‘there is no train depot here at Fort Pulaski and no tunnels that lead into town’. He went on to tell us information I had never learned in school about the Underground Railroad.
The Underground Railroad refers to the efforts of enslaved people seeking freedom by escaping from bondage. We learned that after the fall of Fort Pulaski, Union Major General David Hunter issued an order setting all slaves FREE which predated Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation. Many of the slaves made their way to the fort and set up camp and waited to go north, and some even formed one of the first colored troop divisions during the Civil War.
After learning even more about the Underground Railroad we made our way to the interior of the fort. We also enjoyed reading the historical markers around the fort and visiting the Visitors’ Center where the girls got their Jr. Ranger Badge booklet. We only visited about half the fort because I thought we should leave some for our next visit.