Before Listening

Americans learn about the history of slavery in the US in grade school and high school classes. We read about Harriet Tubman, who helped many escape to freedom on the “Underground Railroad,” and John Brown, who led an armed revolt against slavery.

But we sometimes lose sight of the stories of individual human beings and the choices they made.

In this piece you’ll hear about one of the most extraordinary escapes from slavery. Nate DiMeo tells us the true story of Henry Brown, who literally mailed himself to freedom.

Before listening, think about these questions:

  • What would you do if you had escaped from slavery, but your family was still left behind?
  • If a person escapes from a difficult situation, should he or she enjoy freedom, or does one have the responsibility to return and help those who remain?