He thanks UGRR historian Carol Mull and Deborah Meadows of the African American Cultural and Historical Museum of Washtenaw County for their help in researching this article.
Thomas House There are also five Michigan UGRR programs recognized by NPS in the network: Ann Arbor Journey to Freedom Underground Railroad Tours Detroit International UGRR Heritage Program; Flight to Freedom Program at First Congregational Church; Caroline Quarlls: A Family Legacy of Freedom Program Vandalia Free Soil Underground Railroad Sightseeing Bus Tour For details, visit www.
Also of some significance is the recent development of the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center in Cincinnati, Ohio, and educational center devoted to public interpretations of the UGRR.
According to the National Park Service, there is also a significant geographic or spatial element to the UGRR in that it "refers to a multitude of routes to freedom taken by fugitive enslaved African-Americans" (USNPS 1999 [emphasis mine]).
It is apparent that with these sorts of understandings, the profundity of the UGRR does not come from recognizing it as mass-scale defiance as such.
Another related aspect of the modern reifying conceptions of the UGRR is that "it" has been pushed into the bourgeois realm of palatable history.
But, until conceptions of the UGRR are reconsidered in order to understand the centrality of historical and social processes of African-American defiance and marronage, a strong bias towards emphasizing and preserving sites associated with those who assisted maroons will remain.