National Parks - New York

Harriet Tubman National Historical Park

I’m such a bad blogger. Here we are, almost two weeks later, and I’m finally getting around to posting about the second half of our Day of Badass Women.🤦‍♀️

After leaving the Women’s Rights National Historical Park, we had a quick picnic lunch on the shores of Cayuga Lake, watched people fishing, and saw some cute dogs.

And then we were off to Auburn, NY to check out the Harriet Tubman National Historical Park. This site encompasses two buildings situated next to each other. The Thompson Memorial A.M.E. Zion Church and its parsonage underwent recent renovations, and had actually had their grand reopening the morning of the day that we were there. The Church is where Harriet worshiped for the many decades during which she resided in Auburn. We didn’t spend a lot of time there because we had a tour waiting for us elsewhere, but we did get to see the beautiful restoration of the inside of the church.

The new steeple and paint on the exterior is stunning, and seeing the before and after of the restoration of the church interior and the bell was impressive. I loved that they duplicated the stenciling that had been done around the space, and if you turn back towards the main entrance and look up, you can see that they kept some of the original plaster and stencil work.

If you have a few minutes, time-lapse videos of the entire two years of reconstruction, as well as more details on the project, and some pretty impressive before and after pics, can be found here. If you check out that page and, like me, are concerned about what was done in the front alcove, that artwork has actually been safely sealed beneath the new paintjob, allowing it to be uncovered should someone want to do so in the future.

And one more thing – if go on a hot summer day like we did, the parsonage now serves as a small visitor center and has air conditioning. ❄️

Stay tuned for more of Harriet in part three of our day’s journey. Hopefully it won’t take me another two weeks to get it posted. 😊

Info for other National Park geeks:

Cancellations available:

  • Harriet Tubman NHP
  • Underground RR Network to Freedom

Junior Ranger: coming soon
B.A.R.K. Ranger: no

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