National Underground Railroad Conference

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2013 National Underground Railroad Conference
The War for Freedom:
The Underground Railroad During the Civil War

The theme for this year's conference is The War for Freedom: The Underground Railroad During the Civil War. The conference will commemorate the sesquicentennial of the Emancipation Proclamation, as well as the 15th Anniversary of the National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom. Traditional notions long held that the Underground Railroad ended with the coming of the Civil War (1861-1865), and more specifically the Emancipation Proclamation (1863). However, this is not true, as the struggle for freedom continued in the midst of the nation’s unrest. The 2013 National Underground Conference will focus on the Underground Railroad during the Civil War, exploring resistance to enslavement through escape and flight during this tumultuous period of the nation’s history. As the battle over whether the nation should accept or abolish slavery waged on, people continued to fight their own personal battles against the institution of slavery, and the Underground Railroad continued to play an important role, as shown by the continual enforcement of the Fugitive Slave Act during the war. It was not until the 13th Amendment eliminated “slavery and involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime” that the need for the Underground Railroad ultimately ended.


Schedule of Events

Wednesday, June 19

8:00-8:30 am   Conference Tour Registration and Check-In

8:30 am-5:00 pm   Conference Tour 1: Fighting for Freedom

2:00 pm-5:30 pm   Conference Registration

6:30 pm-8:30 pm   Opening Reception at Central High NHS - 1500 S. Park   Street, Little Rock, Arkansas, 72202; (501) 447-1400

Thursday, June 20

8:00 am   Registration

8:00 am - 6:30 pm   Exhibit Hall

8:00 am - 9:00 am   Continental Breakfast

9:00 am - 10:15 am   Opening Convocation: Keynote Address

10:30 am-12:00 am
Concurrent Session 1 - At the Crossroads: Slavery and Freedom in Arkansas
Concurrent Session 2 - The Fight for Freedom: The Underground Railroad as    Rehearsal for War

12:15 pm-1:45 pm   Luncheon : Keynote Address

2:00 pm-3:30 pm
Concurrent Session 3- Crossing the Picket: Claiming Freedom in the    Northwest Mississippi Region
Concurrent Session 4- Digging for Freedom: Uncovering Sites of Resistance

3:45 pm-5:15 pm
Concurrent Session 5- On the Record: Documenting the Struggle for    Freedom
Concurrent Session 6- Routes to Freedom: The Military Goes Underground

6:30 pm-8:30 pm   Banquet

Friday, June 21

8:00 am   Registration

7:30 am-4:30 pm   Exhibit Hall

8:00 am-9:00 am   Continental Breakfast

9:00 am-10:30 am
Concurrent Session 7- Anything But Civil: The UGRR as Conflict Between the    States
Concurrent Session 8- Teaching Freedom: Primary Sources as Tools for Educators

10:45 am-11:45 am   Keynote Address

12:00 pm-1:00 pm   Luncheon

1:15 pm-2:45 pm   Plenary Session- From Contrabands to Freedmen:   African American Community Formation During the Civil War

3:00-4:30 pm   Closing Convocation

5:30 pm-8:30pm   Explore Little Rock Trolley Tour

Saturday, June 22

7:30 am-8:00am   Conference Tour Registration and Check-In

8:00 am-9:00 pm   Conference Tour 2: The Arkansas Delta