Harriet Tubman Home for the Aged

@Lisa Hughes

Harriet Tubman, Selfless

Harriet Tubman gave of herself in many ways. She was a compassionate, caring person who used her resources to help improve the lives of the people around her and in her communities.

Compassionate. Feeling the indignity and brutal impacts of slavery, Harriet Tubman wanted to alleviate the negative effects for others. Her work speaks to her desire to seek freedom, equality, safety and security of her family and other passengers – which she referred to as her brood.

Humanitarian. Harriet Tubman was always caring for those in need, supplying shelter, food, clothing and medical attention.During her 54 years in Auburn, NY, she raised four or five children she brought home from the city's children's asylum. She also worked with the AME Zion Church to create the John Brown Home for the Colored Indigent and Aged (founded by Harriet Tubman on her property), among the earliest nursing and assisted living facilities for African Americans in the country. Tubman herself became a patient of the home for the last two years of her life and it later became known as the Tubman Home for the Aged.

Philanthropist. Selling goods from her garden (among other ways) helped Harriet Tubman raise money to support her humanitarian efforts and to help fund the Tubman Home for the Aged. She also pledged $500 to help build the Thompson Memorial AME Zion Church, where she attended services for 22 years and from where she was buried in 1913. This church is now the base of the Harriet Tubman National Historical Park.

Spiritual. Her spiritual upbringing led to Harriet Tubman’s deep faith. She believed in God as her creator, guide, protector and deliverer. In fact, she said that she spoke with him every day, as told by William Garrett. Tubman believed that God ordained her to do the work that she did and granted her the strength and trust needed to risk her life to save others. 


Discover Harriet Tubman’s Chosen Home

Find out more to see and do around abolition, civil rights and equal rights heritage in our area. Harriet Tubman settled here in her freedom for many reasons, and the community that welcomed her with open arms is a big part of that story.