Bill Preserving Slave Route OKd
President Clinton signed into law Tuesday a bill that will help preserve the slave escape route known as the Underground Railroad, authorizing the National Park Service to spend $500,000 a year to link the sites of the Underground Railroad, produce educational materials and enter partnerships to commemorate the 19th-century escape route.
The bill was sponsored by Reps. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Louis Stokes (D-Ohio), and by Sens. Carol Moseley-Braun (D-Ill.) and Mike DeWine (R-Ohio).
“This law will help us to preserve and commemorate the important, but often overlooked, history of the Underground Railroad,” said Portman, whose great-great-grandparents were Quakers and abolitionists who lived in a farmhouse near West Milton, Ohio, where freedom-seeking slaves were harbored.
Moseley-Braun said the new network will be significant not just for black Americans, but for all Americans.
“It really is something that all Americans can take real pride in, because it celebrates the best of our history,” she said.