Origin of the name Underground Railroad
Clip | 1m 19s | Video has closed captioning.
Historians haven't been able to pin down how the Underground Railroad got its name. Many believe it was a slave-catcher who coined the term, when the runaway he was chasing seemed to just disappear as though he'd escaped on a mysterious underground rail line. But one thing is certain: the "railroad" that helped runaway slaves flee to the free states had nothing to do with steel rails.
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