Harriet (2019) - full transcript

The extraordinary tale of Harriet Tubman's escape from slavery and transformation into one of America's greatest heroes, whose courage, ingenuity, and tenacity freed hundreds of slaves and changed the course of history.


No, no, no.

Mommy, no!




- John.
- Hmm.

Least you remember my name.

I'm always scared

you'll wake up from one
of them spells and forget it.

Johnny. Johnny.

- Mm-hmm.
- John...

Guess what I got, Minty-mine.

- Is it...?
- Is it...?

Is it...?

- Give it.
- Oh, you want it?

- I want it.
- Come and get it.

Come and get it.

We got it. We got it.

- We got it.
- Daddy, Daddy.

We got it.
We got the letter.

Johnny, read it to me.

I don't need to.
Got it remembered.

"I, Joshua Abrams,
having reviewed the original

- "last will and testament
- ♪ Hold on ♪

- "of Atthow Pattison
- ♪ Hold on ♪

- of Dorchester County, Maryland..."
- ♪ Hold on ♪

♪ Hold on ♪

♪ Keep your hand on the plow ♪

♪ Hold on ♪

♪ Hold on ♪

♪ Wanna get to heaven,
I'm-a tell you how ♪

♪ Keep that hand
on the gospel plow ♪

♪ Just keep that hand
on the plow ♪

♪ Hold on ♪

♪ Hold on ♪

- ♪ Hold on ♪
- ♪ Hold on ♪

♪ Hold on ♪

- ♪ Hold on ♪
- ♪ Keep that ♪

♪ Hand on the plow ♪

♪ Hold on ♪

♪ Hold on. ♪



I want y'all to hold on to some
words from Colossians 3:22.

"Slaves, honor your earthly
masters in everything."

"And do it not only
when their eyes are on you

"and to curry their favor,

"but do it

"with sincerity of heart

and reverence for the Lord."


- Amen.
- Amen.

Thank you, Reverend Green,
for those wise words.

You folks enjoy your Sunday.

Cook has gravy
for your corn pone tonight.

- Reverend.
- Bless you.

You go on now.

Stay strong.

- So long.
- Hey.

- I'm coming with you.
- Robert, no.

- You too hot-headed.
- I'm coming.

They beat you again,
they gonna kill you.

- Now you go with Mary.
- Mama...

- Go, get. Go on now.
- Mary, go on.

Go on now.

Master Brodess,

could I get a word?

Master Brodess, uh,

I think you know
Minty's husband John.

He work with me
over at Thompson Mill.

Course I know him.

I let him marry her.

What's your point?

Me and Minty...

uh, we thinking
about having a family.


...we want our babies
born free.

So we hired a lawyer

that made it clear that...

You hired a lawyer.

Ben, what the hell
is this nigger talking about?

Uh, well, sir, well,

what we're talking about
is the last wishes

of your great-granddaddy
Atthow Pattison.

He gave my wife Rit
to your mama as a child,

but she's supposed
to be freed at 45.

She 57 now.

Well, you got this will?

Got a letter
from the lawyer, sir.

- H-He say it clear.
- Hmm.

My mama was 46

when you sold my sisters.

Lawyer say that illegal.

We all supposed to be free
when she turn 45.

My sisters is lost to us,
but John and me... we...

we want our babies born free
like they supposed to be.

Now you listen here, girl.

Your daddy may be free
and your husband, too,

but you and your mama

and your brothers and sister...

they belong to me... for life.

And your babies will belong
to me

and their babies
will belong to me.

Do you understand me?

You're the devil!

You're the devil,
Edward Brodess!

You sold my daughters south

where nobody know their name!

Come on now. Come on.

- John.
- My babies.

You and Ben ain't
welcome here no more.

You stay away from my slaves.

Now get the hell
off my damn porch.

Come on now.

Come on.

Weren't for you, I would have
sold that girl a long time ago.

My master an evil man, Lord!

You know he evil.

If you can't change his soul,
take him!

Take him, Lord!

Strike my master down!

Lord don't listen
to niggers, Minty.

Now, I've been telling you that
since we were kids.

Since the time
I had typhoid as a boy

and Mama had you sittin' me.

The first thing I saw
when I opened my eyes

was your little black face

Scared the fever
right out of me.

Now, I got used to your face...

but that praying...

always made my skin crawl.

What the hell were you
thinking, hiring a lawyer?

You think Daddy would just
let you all go free...

damn near half his property...
just like that?

He warned me.

"Boy, having a favorite slave
is like having a favorite pig.

"You can feed it,

you can play with it,
give it a name..."

"One day...

"you might have
to eat it or sell it.

"You know it
and the pig knows it.

"And if you have to sell it,
there's no more guilt

"than separating piglets.

And if you have to eat it,
you'll forget its name."

I hope one day I forget yours.

Come on home.

Come on, I said.


- Oh, God, Edward!
- ♪ Mmm... ♪

♪ Wanna get to heaven,
let me tell you how ♪

♪ Keep your hand
on the gospel plow ♪

♪ Keep your hand ♪

- ♪ On the plow ♪
- Here lies

our beloved brother, husband,

- father.
- ♪ Hold on ♪

- ♪ Hold on ♪
- We put him to rest this day

- in remembrance...
- ♪ Hold on ♪

♪ Hold on ♪

♪ Mmm ♪

♪ Keep your hand on the plow ♪

♪ Hold on ♪

- Bless us in the name of the heavenly father.
- ♪ Hold on ♪

♪ If that plow stays
in your hand ♪

♪ Take you straight
to the promised land ♪

♪ Keep your hands on the plow ♪

- ♪ Hold on ♪
- ♪ Hold on ♪

♪ Hold on ♪

♪ Oh... ♪

♪ Hold on ♪

♪ Oh... ♪

♪ Keep your hands on the plow ♪

♪ Hold on. ♪

Oh, John, John, John.

John, Johnny.

Johnny, I got to go,
I got to go right now.

I know. We going.

I'm coming with you.

- Okay?
- John. John, you're free.

- Uh-uh. Uh-uh.
- They catch you, they take your freedom.

I can't live with that.

You won't make it alone, Minty.

Who gonna protect you,
you fall in one of them spells?

Who gonna be there
when you wake up?

Now, you need me.

Wait for me by the gate.

I'm gonna say goodbye
to my mama.

Okay, okay.

♪ When that fair old chariot
comes ♪

♪ I'm gonna leave you ♪

♪ I'll meet you
in the promised land ♪

♪ I'm gonna leave you ♪

♪ I'm sorry,
I'm gonna leave you ♪

♪ Farewell, oh, farewell ♪

♪ But I'll meet you
in the morning ♪

♪ Farewell, oh, farewell ♪

♪ But I'll meet you
in the morning ♪

♪ Farewell, oh, farewell ♪

♪ When that fair old
chariot comes ♪

♪ I'm gonna leave you ♪

♪ I'm bound
for the promised land ♪

♪ I'm gonna leave you ♪

- ♪ I'm sorry, I'm gonna leave you ♪
- ♪ Mmm... ♪

♪ Farewell, oh, farewell ♪

- ♪ But I'll meet you in the morning ♪
- ♪ Mmm... ♪

♪ Farewell, oh, farewell ♪

♪ I'll meet you
in the morning ♪

♪ I'm bound
for the promised land ♪

♪ On the other side of Jordan ♪

♪ Bound for the promised land ♪

♪ I'm sorry,
I'm gonna leave you ♪

♪ Farewell, oh, farewell ♪

♪ But I'll meet you
in the morning ♪

♪ Farewell, oh, farewell ♪

♪ Oh, I'll ♪

♪ Meet you in the morning ♪

♪ Farewell, oh, farewell ♪

♪ Oh, I'll meet you
in the morning ♪

♪ Farewell, oh, farewell. ♪

What you doing here, John?

You got no business here.

Just coming to see my wife
is all, sir.

Sure is hard not being able
to see her.

Now you better get used
to missing her.

Get on back to Thompson's.

Yes, sir.

Giddy! Giddy!

What is it?

Minty. She gone.

Stop right there, nigger.

Where is she?

- Where is she?!
- I told you, sir.

I was just coming to see her
to kiss her good...

I don't want to look at you.

Want to say I ain't seen you.

But I see your heart.

Daddy, they gonna sell me

where no one come back from.

I got to run.

Lookie here, girl.

You go
to Reverend Green church.

Ask him to pray
for your journey.

Daddy, Reverend Green
always preaching obedience.

Do what I say.

Go to Reverend Green church.

Ask him to pray
for your journey.

Yes, Daddy.

I'll be with you.

Go on, now.

I love you, Daddy.

I love you, too.

Who is it?

Minty. Ben Ross' daughter.

Girl, what you doing out here
alone this time of night?

You done lost your mind.

Come on.

My daddy say ask you to pray
for my journey.

You're the one with the spells.

Yes, sir.

And you intend to run.

They gonna sell me south,

away from my husband
and family.

Which mean they motivated.

You money to them.

Unless word spread you run off.

Then you damaged goods.

They'll beat you,
hobble you, or worse.

Now, you go alone,

you got about a hare's chance
in a fox grove.

Slavers don't get you,
then the copperheads

or the timber wolves will.

Can you even read, child?

Maybe nobody noticed
you're gone.

Maybe you, you sneak back
fore daylight.

I ain't going back.

I want to be free.

There's not much time.

It's near midnight.

You got to be miles away
from here fore dawn.

Now, I need you to remember
what I tell you.

- Can you do that?
- Yes, sir.


is your enemy.

Trust in God.

The North Star will guide you.

Follow that North Star.

If there are no stars,
just follow the river.

If you can't see the river,
listen for it.

When the river split,

cross the high bridge
over the rushing creek

and head straight north.

After a few days' time,

Delaware River be
on your right.

Follow that to Wilmington.

Look for a blacksmith
and iron merchant

named Thomas Garrett.

I'll send him word.

May God be with you, child.

I ain't seen her, sir.

I ain't looked
on my daughter's face

since Master Brodess
run us off.

Ben's an honest nigger, Gideon.

He says he ain't seen her,
he ain't.

This one knows something.

Caught him sniffing round
the cabins when Minty ran off.

I told you.

I ain't seen her.

Nephew! Nephew!

This is uncalled for!

These men are
my respected workers.

If your niggers helped
my slave escape,

I'm holding you responsible.

Dogs got a scent!

Let's go!

Come on!

This way!

Get on!


Come on back peaceful.

Family's worried about you.

Your mama's crying.

Sister, too.

Come on home.

Thinking about jumping?

Suicide's a sin against God.

Against those
that own you, too.


Easy, now.

Easy, now.

Now, I've decided
not to sell you after all.

Fact is, I'd miss you.

Now, you been there
all my life...

like your mama was
all my daddy's.

Daddy vowed never
to sell your mama.

And I'm vowing...

never to sell you.

Now, you can come on back,

and I won't hurt you bad.

You can stay at home,

stay with John,

stay with us.

Would you like that?

I'm gonna be free or die.

Goddamn it, Minty!


I know you're there.

You'd best get out now.


You know a blacksmith
around here

name of Garrett?

Careful, girl.

You're half dressed.

Look half dead.

Anyone with eyes
could see what you are.

The man you're looking for...

is on the corner
of 4th and Shipley.

No more than half a mile
west of here.

Thank you, sir.

May I help thee, friend?


you know a man named...

Reverend Green?

Yes, I do.


Here we are, friend.

Pennsylvania border.

Shall I drive thee across

or would thee prefer
to walk alone into freedom?

I walk with the Lord.

Philadelphia's 25 miles.

Find the Pennsylvania
Anti-Slavery Society...

and ask for William Still.

This is his likeness.

So you'll know him
when you see him.

Until we meet again,
God bless thee.

God bless you, sir.

Please, sir.

I looking for the Pennsylvania
Anti-Slavery Society.

Corner of 5th and Arch Street.

About half a mile down.

Don't be afraid.

There are plenty of us here
in Philadelphia.

Walk like you got a right to,

won't nobody pay you no mind.

Thank you.

May I help you?


are you Mr. William Still?

I am.
And you are?

White man name of Garrett
sent me.

All right.

Let's start
with your full name

and where you're from.

This book is full
of slave histories.

I keep a record of most
of the slaves

that travel
through Philadelphia.

Some I have to find,
most find me.

My name
is Araminta Ross Tubman.

Folk call me Minty.

Come from Dorchester County,

Farm of Edward Brodess.

Edward Brodess is your master?

Massa Brodess dead.

His wife Miss Eliza own me
and my family.

Not you.

Not anymore.

So where are the others?

Weren't no others.

Well, y-you know,
you can trust me.

I'm... I'm a friend.

Who, who'd you make
the journey with?

I left my husband and family.

It was just me and the Lord.

Well, I don't know if you know

how extraordinary this is,

by some miraculous means,

you have made it 100 miles
to freedom...

all by yourself.

Would you like to pick
a new name

to mark your freedom?

Most ex-slaves do.

Any name you want.

They call my mama Rit,

but her name Harriet.

I want my mama name
and my husband.

Harriet Tubman.

Harriet Tubman.

Did your master
ever harm you physically?

Do you have wounds
or scars from beatings?

Overseer cracked my head open

when I was about 13.

I was at the stove

with Massa's son Gideon.

Big brother Robert

snuck off and followed us.

Didn't trust Massa Gideon
alone with me.

Few minutes later,
overseer bust in

looking for Robert,
mad as a rabid hound.

Picked up a weight
off a counter

and hurled it at him,
except I stepped between 'em.

Cracked my skull right open.

They say I slept most
of two months.

Next thing I remember
was seeing my sisters sold.

Except I saw it
before it happened.

Uh, what'd you, uh...?

What do you mean you saw it
before it happened?

Well, God showed me...

to prepare me, I guess.

But when it happened,

it hurt so bad,

worse than any beating,

worse than the hole in my head.

Hole in my head just...

made God's voice more clear.


Almost there.


Mr. Still.

Good afternoon.

Miss Buchanon, good afternoon.

Allow me to introduce you

to Miss Harriet Tubman,
a new arrival.

this is Marie Buchanon.

She's a friend and the owner
of this establishment.

Pleasure to meet you,


Well, I will leave her

in your very capable hands,

Ladies, good afternoon.

Come on in.

Come on.

The public rooms
are on this floor.

This is the game room.

Say hello.

- Hello.
- Hello.

And this is the parlor.

You are welcome here any time.

Yes, I'm a woman,
yes, I'm Negro,

and yes, I own this place.

My mama was freed
after her master died.

She was pregnant with me

and I was born
and raised free,

right here in Philadelphia.

You can take the last room
upstairs on the left.

And supper has already
been served,

but I'll make you a plate.

But first
you've got to take a bath.

You're stinking like
an old barnyard animal.

There's a washtub
in the kitchen.

I'll put some water on for you.

You was born free?


Guess you never had
the stink of fear.

Of running for your life.

I have not, Harriet.

I apologize.

Gonna go warm your stew.

If you need anything,
just let me know.

So, you got a man?

My husband John.

He free like you.

He was gonna run with me,
but... I was scared

if we get caught,
they'd take his freedom.

So I left him.

But I wish he was here
with me now.

Must've been hard on him
when he,

when he found me gone.

The boatmen, they call them
the black jacks,

they travel up and down
the Delaware

and Chesapeake Bay.

Maybe they can get word to him
that you made it.

Thank you, ma'am.

Call me Marie.

You wash up good
'cause tomorrow

we're gonna get you
a paying job.

Slow down, Harriet.

They don't pay us
by the bushel.

- Hello, Miss Harriet.
- Jasper.

- Any word from my family?
- Yes, ma'am.

Brought some lumber
from the Eastern Shore.

Your husband
and family know you're safe.

My husband.

He send word back?

No, ma'am.

No word.

Thank you.

It's not bad.

I know Mr. Beechem
over on Pine.

I want you to take this around
to him this afternoon.

Harriet, how are you?

I need your angels to help me
get my husband and family.

Well, Harriet, that's-that's
not how this works.

My angels are part of
a sophisticated network,

not for your personal use.

Now, trust we're doing
what we can

- for who we can.
- But I feel something wrong, William.

I can't sleep.
Please help me.

Listen, Harriet, uh...

Our work has gotten
a lot more dangerous.

Slave owners
are getting frustrated

with the amount of runaways.

Federal judges, marshals

and slave catchers
are working together.

Even Congress is threatening

to pass laws
to appease the South.

If you won't help me,
I'll go myself.

Harriet, wait a second.

Wait a second, wait a second.

Harriet, I can't have you
risking your life

or this network
because you're lonely.

Rescuing slaves requires skill

and careful planning.

It requires reading, Harriet.

Can you read a sign or a map?
Can you read at all?

I put my attention on trying

to hear God's voice
more clearly.

Do you know what would happen
if you got caught?

They would torture you
until you pointed them

right to this office.

You got lucky, Harriet.

And there's nothing more
you can do.

Don't you tell me
what I can't do.

I made it this far on my own.

God was watching,
but my feet was my own.

Running, bleeding, climbing,

nearly drowned, nothing
to eat for days and days,

but I made it.

So don't you tell me
what I can't do.

You don't know me.

I made up my mind...
I'm going back.

Without my husband
and my family,

I'm just a stranger
in a strange land.

If I'm free,
they should be, too.

I'm gonna go get 'em,

one by one,
starting with my husband.

I... I need a suit for him
and a dress for me

so I can look like a free lady.


Will you help me?

How do you do?

How do you do?


You were confident, composed,

wise enough to know
not to look

a strange white man
in the eyes.

You don't want no trouble.

But if trouble comes...

...you'll be ready.

Try it.


You'll be ready.

I'll put you
in touch with a man

who will sell you free papers.

They won't be yours,
they're someone else's.

May not match
your description exactly,

but they'll get
something right.

Station is Dover, Delaware.

Dover, Delaware.

Hopefully, they won't

read 'em too close.

They're more worried
about Negroes heading north.

Runaways don't go south.

Hello, sir.
How do you do?


- Dessa Dixon?
- Yes, sir.

Where were you born, Dessa?


July 18, 1824, of free issue.

Says here you're
five and a half feet tall.

You ain't more than five feet.

Must've worn my high boots
that day.

Says you got a birthmark
on your forehead.

That's correct, sir.

Thank you, sir.

Come on, now!

Straighten those rows.

Dear Mr. Thompson.

No. Dear brother-in-law,

I hope you will accept
this modest payment

on the debt owed you
by my departed...

my dearly departed... Edward.

Please accept
the enclosed $7.50.

I hope to make
another payment next month.

Your neighbor
and sister-in-law,

Eliza Brodess.

We're gonna have to sell
some slaves, Mama.

Our stature in this community
is measured in Negroes.

We can't live like paupers.

Would you prefer
to keep the slaves

and sell the farm?

We can sell the Ross brothers.

I mean, Robert alone
is worth $600 or $700.

If we sell Junyah
and Henry, too,

we can bring home maybe $1,600.

That will go a ways
to paying off Daddy's debts.

You won't have to beg.

We can go on as we have.

With you unmarried
and sleeping in brothels?

We'll go on as we have.

The others will just have
to work harder

to make up for the loss.

Negroes for sale.

All right, now.

Yes, sir.

♪ I'm sorry
I had to leave you. ♪



Johnny, what they done to you?

One good eye is all I need
to see you, girl.

You look good, Minty.

You look good.

Why you back here?

It ain't safe.

I come to get you,

bring you to freedom.

I got you a suit.

I've been living free
in Philadelphia,

but I can't live without you.

Ain't you happy to see me?

I heard you were drowned,

Never thought
I'd see you again.

I sent you word.

By the black jacks.

Time I heard you alive...


I'm married.

I know you're married.

You're married to me.

I took another wife.

Took another wife?

Her name Caroline.

She free like me.

She carrying our child.



another woman

carrying your child?

I thought you...

I thought you loved me.

- I lo...
- No.

Don't. Don't.

- Hey, hey. Hey.
- No.

Hey, hey, hey, hey.

I love you like...

I ain't loved nobody.

Not my own kin.

You left me, Minty.

You left me.

You went alone and left me.

And I prayed for you.

Gideon whipped
the sight out of my eye.

And I prayed for you.

When I heard
you jumped off that bridge

and I thought
you were cold and dead,

caught in the river weeds

like some animal...

I prayed for you.

You took another wife.

Go on, then.

Go on home.

Minty, you're not safe here.

You got to leave now.

Go on home!

I love you, Minty.

I love you.

I would've died for you.


If you'd've let me.

Why, Lord?

I listen for your voice.

You told me to come, I came.

You-you led me here.

Why bring me all this way
and rub mud in my face?

Why you let me live?



John told me you were here.



I ain't gonna look at you.

But you being here now,

that's a miracle.



I got your brothers hiding
in the corncrib.

Miss Eliza fixing to sell 'em.

They been in there
waiting on Robert.

Mary's in labor,

and he won't leave
till she deliver.

- Junyah.
- Minty.



Can't believe it's you.




this my intended, Jane.

From Horatio Jones' farm.

Her massa been beating her bad.

She coming with us.

Phoebe asked to come, too.

She scared of being sold away
from her baby.

My husband passed last spring.

She all I got.

When I hear
you made it to freedom,

I name her Araminta.

She be good,

I promise.

Your sister Rachel
stole Miss Eliza's laudanum,

to keep her quiet.

Where is Rachel?

Where my sister?

Rachel too scared to run,

She say Miss Eliza got
a hawk eye on her.

And Mama?

Rit, she with me.

Miss Eliza let me buy
her freedom.

She hadn't much use for her.

Rit ain't been right since
she heard you done drownt.

I'll look after your mama.

Don't you worry about us, now.

All right.

I only planned for one more,

not all of you and a baby, too.

It's late.

Y'all got to get going.

I'll send Robert on.

Go on, now.


Thank God.


How's Mary?

We got ourselves a baby girl.

I set her on her mama's breast,

and I kissed her goodbye.

You had to leave 'em,

free or in chains.

You chose freedom.

You come for John.

I thought I come for him.

I see now
I come for all of you.

Ain't but a few hours
of dark left now.

If y'all going,
y'all needs to get.

Get going.

You follow your sister.

- I love you, Daddy.
- Go ahead now.

I'll be with you.

Daddy, come with us.

Me and your mama
will be just fine.

I ain't going nowhere
till all my children free.

Go on, now, get.

Go on.

I ain't seen none of you.


I don't like this.

Reverend say there a special
place in hell for runaways.

I don't trust him.

You trust me?

- Yeah.
- Yeah.


it's good to see you.

- Heard you'd come back.
- Mm.

Almost didn't believe it.

You, lift this for me.

You'll wait out the day
down there.

Word spread.


Find them, goddamn it!

Ma, what is it?

We had five slaves run off.

Five slaves.

Over $2,000.

The whole farm ain't worth
but $5,000.

We got a rat in our pantry,

and it will starve us if
we don't trap it and kill it!



Don't you "yes'm" me,
you black bitch.

Your brothers run off.

What's your part in this, girl?

I don't know nothing, I swear.

I don't even know
what you saying. Who run off?

I will snap your neck.

I don't know nothing, I swear.

Foxx, take these two
pickaninnies to market

- and sell 'em.
- Yes, sir.

No. 'Twas Minty.

It's Minty.


Minty's dead.

Sh-She alive.

She come back.

Niggers' tales.

Like haints in the marsh.

She lying.

I hope it's true.

Good Lord, I hope it is.

Foxx, round up some men
and meet me out at Poplar Neck.

I'll deal with you
when I get back.

The hell is wrong
with you, boy?

Out of my way.

You looking
for some runaways, sir?

What do you know about it?

This here your notice, right?

Runaway slave.

Short, strong,

a dent in her head.

Where'd you see her?

Take you there for a dollar.

Now, I'm a tracker.

I know which way they headed,

and I can help you find 'em.

A tracker, you say?

That and lots more.

Got skills
right down the alphabet,

till you get
to "scout" and "tracker."

Work for wages, though.

Ain't no slave.

Well, how 'bout you tell me
which way they headed

or I shoot the nose
off your face?

East from Poplar Neck.

Now, I know Bigger Long!

Best slave catcher round here.

But hard to get.

Ill-tempered and expensive.

You know Bigger Long?

We practically kin.

Hangs out in places
you wouldn't be seen, sir.

But I know where to find him.

Now, you find Bigger Long,

you tell him to meet me
out at Poplar Neck,

and there'll be something
in it for you.

Last night

five of my best slaves run off.

That's three bucks
and a female, with foal.

And I will pay $300

for their return,


and unharmed.

And I want the girl
that's leading 'em, too.

I don't want no harm
to come to her

by nobody's hands but mine.

I get $200.

They can split the rest.


What's an ugly bastard like you
gonna buy with $200?

Enough white whores
to last me till Lent.

Well, then you better be
as good as they say.

Good boy.


They coming right to us.

Bigger's driving them
from behind.

Other two gots
the roads covered.

Ain't no place to go
but right here.

Well, we'll be waiting for 'em.

Don't let 'em out of sight.

What's wrong with her?

She praying.
Minty peculiar that way.

What we supposed to do, wait?

She our leader.

- Get her up.
- Don't touch her.

- She talking to God.
- They coming.

We got to go.

We can't go this way.

There's danger.

God say which way we can go?


What now?

We cross.

- I can't swim.
- Me neither.

Robert, carry the baby.

Issac, help Miz Lucy.

And, Junyah,

- help Jane.
- This fool trying to drown us.

you done gone full crazy.

We got an old woman
and a baby with us.

No, we ain't going
in that river.

Come on, y'all.

I say we are.

Now you be free or die.

I ain't leave my wife
and my family

to drown like no rat.

You want to shoot me? Hmm?

Go ahead.

If she drown, who gon' lead us?

She the only one
know the way to freedom land.

I wants to see freedom land
fore I die.

I'll lead you.

To the bridge. Follow me.

Come on, now. Come on.

Come on!

Come on.

Oh, my God.


Heavenly Father.

Rivers of living water

flow through me.

Lord, help me cross.

Lead me through.


What happened?

I lost them.

Lost them?

They disappeared
in the fog first...

You fucked up, nigger.

Oh, God.

Minty, I...

That baby girl Araminta...

you call her Minty.

You call me Harriet
from now on.

That's my freedom name.

I'm Harriet Tubman,

leader of this group.

We do what I say.

Oh, excellent.

Uh, what I really...


- Are-are these...?
- My friends and family.

Freedom-seeking slaves.

I went down south
and brought 'em back.

God showed me the way.

His wife is a free woman.

Big with his child.

John didn't want my babies.

Couldn't bear the thought
of 'em growing up...

being slaves.


you are so far beyond

any man I have ever met.

So far beyond.

What's a man
to a woman touched by God?

You making fun of me, Marie?

No, not whatsoever.

But I do have questions.

You say that God's voice
guides you.

What's that like?

Sometime it sting.

- Like a smack in the face.
- Mm.

Other time it's soft.

Like a dream.

Fly off soon as you woke.

Seem like I learned
to see and hear God

like some learn to read a book.


I put all my attention on it.

Act without question.

Fore I can wonder...

...if I even heard it at all.

- Fore I can understand what it mean.
- Hmm.

I thought God...

...wanted me
to go get my husband.

John was just a way to steer me
to where I was needed.

There I was with a suit

and no husband.

I felt a fool.

He's the fool.

God have other plans for me,
Mr. Still.

I'm beginning
to understand that.

Which is why
I'm bringing you here.

Evening, Martin.

Evening, Mr. Still.

Who are these people?

This is the Committee.

The organizers and officers
of the Underground Railroad,

dedicated to helping slaves
escape bondage.

No one sees this.

Only the initiated.

Ladies and gentlemen.

May I present to you
a most extraordinary woman,

Mrs. Harriet Tubman.

Harriet escaped from slavery
herself only a year ago,

and she's already gone back
to liberate others.

She brought back nine souls,
lost none.

In recognition
of her bravery and skill,

we welcome her to the Committee

as a conductor on the Railroad.

What's a conductor?

A conductor accompanies slaves

or passengers
to safe houses or stations

run by stationmasters.

♪ Go down, Moses ♪

♪ Way down in Egypt land... ♪

The bravest conductors
steal slaves

directly from the plantation,

right under
the overseer's nose.

♪ Let my people go. ♪

They have the hardest jobs.

♪ Oh, sinnerman,
where you gonna run to? ♪

♪ Sinnerman, where you
gonna run to? ♪

♪ Where you gonna run to? ♪

♪ All on that day ♪

♪ Well, I run to the rock ♪

♪ Please hide me ♪

♪ I run to the rock ♪

♪ Please hide me ♪

♪ I run to the rock ♪

♪ Please hide me, Lord ♪

♪ All on that day ♪

♪ So I run to the river ♪

♪ It was bleedin' ♪

♪ I run to the sea ♪

♪ It was bleedin' ♪

♪ I run to the sea ♪

♪ It was bleedin' ♪

♪ All on that day ♪

♪ So I run to the river ♪

♪ It was boilin' ♪

♪ I run to the sea ♪

♪ It was boilin',
I run to the sea ♪

♪ It was boilin' ♪

♪ All on that day ♪

♪ So I run to the Lord ♪

♪ Please hide me, Lord ♪

♪ Don't you see me prayin'? ♪

♪ Don't you see me
down here prayin'? ♪

♪ I cried, power ♪

- ♪ Power, Lord ♪
- ♪ Power ♪

♪ Power, Lord ♪

- ♪ Power ♪
- ♪ Power, Lord ♪

- ♪ Power ♪
- ♪ Power, Lord ♪

♪ Power ♪

- ♪ Power, Lord ♪
- ♪ Power ♪

♪ Power, Lord. ♪

Massa's wife branded me

with a hot iron.

Called me "nigger"
like it was my name.

The day I reminded him
my name is Mack...

he beat me senseless.

If I told her I was leaving,

she would've carried on

so everybody
would've knowed about it.

I couldn't say goodbye.

Welcome. Welcome, welcome.

My sister's in danger. You
told me you could rescue her.

I told you I'd try,
and we have.

She works in the Brodess house.
She's been impossible to reach.

- I can reach her.
- No!

It's-it's reckless

to try something like that
right now. I forbid it.

You forbid it?

these are dangerous times.

Everybody everywhere
is looking for you.

They looking for Moses.

I'm going back.

Rachel, get me my
medicine and come upstairs.

- I have a headache.
- Yes'm.

- And get me another brandy.
- Yes'm.

- And clean up this place.
- Yes'm.


Minty, why you here?

Come with me.

Minty, Massa Gideon
and Miss Eliza been full

of the devil since you
and the boys ran off.

They took my babies,
won't tell me where they be.

They know I won't go nowhere
without my children.

We'll find 'em, Rachel,
I promise.

My network will find 'em
and bring 'em up north,

- but you got to come with me now.
- No.

I can't.
I won't.


I ain't leaving you.

I ain't leaving my babies.

You try and force me,
I'll scream.

Rachel, where are you?!

Get in here!

Wait, wait.

Wh-What about Mary,

Robert's wife?
She still here?

She found another man, Minty.

Don't judge her, Minty.

Don't you dare judge us.

We do what we got to
to stay sane.

Can't everybody run.


I need you to watch over
my sister

and her children till
I can bring 'em to freedom.

Protect her, Lord.

Don't let 'em hurt her worse.

You the one they call Moses.

You asking me
or you telling me?

I want to offer my services.

What services they be?

Well, I can do most any job,
A to Z.

Know the woods,
the rivers around here,

most folks in 'em.

Name's Walter.

Why should I trust you, Walter?

Most folks definitely
should not.

But I figured,

since you talk to God...

and it seem like he talk back,

maybe you could introduce us.

I got some explaining to do.

Right now we got to go.

Stop them!

What's going to be done
about Moses?

This fiend is threatening
our very existence.

They say he's
as black as the night.

He's one
of those white abolitionists

in blackface!

Congress must pass
the Fugitive Slave Act now!

It's time to act!

Do you have news?

A slave out
at Vern's farm heard a rumor.

Said that slave that led
your slaves off,

the one y'all been looking
so hard for...

...is the one they call Moses.

No, Moses ain't a nigger.

And he ain't no woman.

Now, he's an abolitionist
in blackface.

Or maybe,

maybe she a little ol' thing
about yea high,

called Harriet Tubman.

I don't know no nigger
named Harriet Tubman.

What about Araminta Ross?

Well, I hear she hiding out
in Philadelphia.

This boat going north?

It's going back to Baltimore.

Wait, what's got everybody
so riled up?

They passed
the Fugitive Slave Act.

Save yourself.

We got to head north now.

- Not without my brothers.
- Harriet.

Wait. Wait for me.

I'll be back.

Bring 'em on.

We're going north!

Listen to me, fugitives beware.

There are slave hunters
in our midst.

Congress has passed
the Fugitive Slave Act,

which allows slave hunters
to pursue slaves

in any state in the Union,

and obliges law enforcement
to turn over fugitives.

Now, you fought to get here,
prepare to fight again

or flee even further north
to Canada.

William! William!

Harriet, thank God.

I sent five men looking
for you.

Look, we have to get you
on a train north.

I put your family on
the last train with Douglass.

He'll see they get safely

- to the border, all right?
- Thank you.

I'll stay and fight
as long as my family's safe.

No, no, no. For the sake
of the entire network,

we have to get you out.

Okay. I'll be at the dock
in 15 minutes.

I have to say goodbye to Marie.

- Hurry.
- Okay.

Leave him be!

Let him go now!

This is a free man.

He has the papers to prove it.

Come on, now.

There he go.

Right over there.

You need to get
your hands off of me!

Don't you touch me!

Where is she?

You missed her.

Tell us where she is.

I told you,
God's got plans for her.

- What plans are those?
- Wouldn't you like

to know, cracker?

But she's...

she's got to live long enough
to do God's will.

She knows that.

She's smarter than you.

She's smarter than you.
She's smarter than you!

Let me go!

Let me go!

She's not here.

Let's go.

What you waiting on, traitor?

Massa hollered,
you better jump.

No more! We filled up!

Do not run!

In the name of God,
you have the right to be free!

Stay and fight.

God is on your side.

Minty! Don't you move!



they killed her.

You got to get
on the boat now, come on.

Make sure she's safe.

It's all right.

You're safe now.

Dear Harriet and family,

it breaks my heart to write you

with such sad news.

Your sister Rachel

has gone to meet
that good friend of the slave,

the angel of death.

I'm content that she
has found peace at last.

I pray for her children.

Yours with affection
and sorrow,

Reverend Samuel Green.


So sorry to hear
about your sister.

I failed her, William.

We failed her.

Harriet, this is, uh,
Senator William Seward.

Miss Tubman.

It's an honor to welcome you
to my home.

My condolences.

How can I help?

500 miles.

500 miles from the
Mason-Dixon Line to Canada.

An unimaginable distance.

Slave catchers are monitoring
all northbound travel.

God help the man
without free papers.

How are we gonna get
our passengers

from the southern farms
and plantations

all the way to the border
of Canada?

We can't keep trying to outrun
them; we have to fight.

The only way to make
the Fugitive Slave Law

a dead letter

is to make half a dozen
or more dead slave catchers.

That will cool their ardor.

He may be right.

Civil war might be
our only hope.

We can't just give up
a-and wait for war.

We need to get back to work

bringing slaves to freedom,

by train or carriage,

on foot if necessary.


the journey from Maryland
to Canada

is 600 miles
from the Canadian border.

Your longest trip
was a hundred.

Now, that would take months,
not weeks. You can't...

I ain't giving up
rescuing slaves

because it's far.

Many of you don't know
slavery firsthand.

You were born free.

You been free so long,
you forget what it's like.

You've gotten comfortable

a-and important.

You got beautiful homes,

beautiful wives.

But I remember.

Children beat for not working,

fore they understand
what work is.

Girls raped fore
they first blood.

Brothers whipped
till they back in ribbons.

Sisters sold from they babies.

Trying not to think
of what they went through.

Those still enslaved
are going through right now.

But I...

I've heard they groans
and they sighs.

I've seen they tears.

And I would give every last
drop of blood in my veins

to free 'em.

So I ain't giving up.

I'm-a do what I got to do,

go wherever I got to go,

however I got to do it,

to free as many slaves
as possible...

...till this beast,
this monster called slavery

is slain dead.


Come on... we're almost there.

So I want y'all to be ready.

Time is running out.

- Yeah.
- Yes, it is.


♪ I see the sign ♪

♪ Yeah ♪

- ♪ I see the sign ♪
- ♪ Yeah ♪

♪ I see the sign ♪

♪ Hey, Lord,
time's running out ♪

♪ It's the sign
of the judgment ♪

- ♪ Hey ♪
- ♪ It's the sign of the judgment ♪

- ♪ Hey ♪
- ♪ Sign of the judgment ♪

♪ Hey, Lord,
time's running out ♪

- ♪ Gotta run to the rock ♪
- ♪ Hey ♪

♪ Gotta run to the rock ♪

- ♪ Hey ♪
- ♪ Gotta run to the rock ♪

♪ Hey, Lord,
time's running out ♪

- ♪ No hiding place ♪
- ♪ Hey ♪

♪ No hiding place ♪

- ♪ Hey ♪
- ♪ No hiding place... ♪

Your daddy about to be arrested

for harboring a group
of fugitives from Dover.

One of 'em got caught
and confessed.

They on their way to arrest
your daddy right now.

- I suggest we get on.
- ♪ Hey, Lord ♪

- ♪ Time's running out ♪
- ♪ No hiding place ♪

- ♪ Hey ♪
- ♪ No hiding place ♪

- ♪ Hey ♪
- ♪ No hiding place... ♪

You build what I asked for?

Close as I could.

It'll have to do.

It's Minty.
Don't scream.

I come to get you.
We gonna get Daddy, too.

Now, I'm gonna let go,
but you can't scream.

- All right?
- Mm.


- Oh, sweet Jesus!
- Shh! Shh! Shh!

Oh, then take me.

I'm ready to go.
Take me home.

I-I-I want to see my daughters.

I want to see my babies.

Mama, I ain't no angel
come to take you to heaven.

It's Minty...

come to take you north.

You're not my Minty.

My Minty just a plain girl.

I'm Harriet Tubman.

I'm Moses.

That's right.

Moses the slave stealer.

Now, I need you to do
exactly what I say.

Where's Daddy?

I can't pull my eyes from you.

I needs to look at you.


Now, who you come for now, huh?

You, Daddy.


You been harboring fugitives?

One of 'em got caught
and talked.

They coming for you.

We got to go right now.

Okay. Okay.


Our Minty Moses.

The one everyone
carrying on about.

I know, I know.

I'm gonna take you north
to see Robert,

Henry and Junyah.

But first I need you
and Daddy to go

to Reverend Green's church.

- You'll be safe there.
- Okay.

Hurry. Then meet me
at Brodess Farm.

Yes, boss.

No more. I don't want it.

It's for your nerves, Mama.

I don't want it!

That girl is trying
to poison me.

She blames me for her mother.

Mama, you're just anxious.

I am suffocating in this place.

It's like being in prison,

awaiting my execution,

surrounded by hostile,
black-faced guards.



- Get him down here.
- We need restitution. - Absolutely.

Seeing as it's been discovered
that Moses is

a nigger girl from your farm,

we think it's only appropriate

that you pay us restitutions

- for our lost property!
- Yeah!

We don't have
that kind of money.

Where's Mama?

Out with Massa Gideon.

We're going through hard times,
like the rest of you.

- Then you're gonna have to sell the farm.
- Yeah!



We are victims
of this diabolical nigger

just like you are!

She went out?

Girl, go get us some more
brandy from the storeroom.

I got a better idea.

Don't be scared, Anger.

I'm your mama's sister.
We family.

Where's your brother, Anger?

The trader carry him off.

Our crops are meager,
our fortune all but gone.

My livelihood, my very health
has been ravaged!

- We are victims, just like you.
- Yeah.

- She's right.
- Praise be God.

Who the hell are you?

Call me whatever you want.

That's what you white folks do.

Now, we need
to work together...

...to find this thief

and burn her at the stake
like Joan of Arc!

- Yes! Yes!
- She's right!

And I have a plan.

I'll put her sister's child
up for auction.

Post notices everywhere.

You ready?

This is for my sister
and her son.

Give my regards to your mother
and your brother.

Harriet Tubman will come
for her niece.

And when she does,

we will be waiting for her!

That's right!

- Where's Foxx?
- Tied up in the shitter.

- Let's go.
- Wait a minute.

♪ Go down, Moses ♪

♪ Way down in Egypt's land ♪

♪ Tell old Pharaoh ♪

♪ To let my people go. ♪

We're gonna need a bigger cart.

- Wait, wait.
- Whoa.

Take me with you, please.

My massa trying to kill me.

We definitely gonna need
a bigger cart.



They gonna have
to come this way.

We got every other way
blocked off.

The letter of the law
must be obeyed

and every precaution taken

to bring
this dangerous wench in alive.

Rest assured,

she will be tried and executed

by the harshest methods

as dictated by the laws
of the State of Maryland.

I'm gonna wet myself.

You know your massa better

than the lines in your hand.

Be him.

Whoa. Whoa.

Gentlemen, good day.

What's all this?

Slave stealers on the loose.

That devil Moses.

We got a surprise for her.

I hope you catch that bitch
and hang her

fore mine get any ideas.

Any of them even breathe
that name on my farm,

I'll beat 'em into Sunday.

Strange times,

when a man can't trust
his own slaves.

Best of luck to you.

Ho. Ho.

We're gonna have
to check the cart, sir.

Sorry to inconvenience you.

Hang on.

Are you related
to Luther Grant?

Yes, sir.

He's my daddy.

I thought
I saw the resemblance.

You tell your daddy
he owes me a whiskey.

Tell him
Ned Utley hasn't forgotten.

All right, y'all have
a nice day. Come on.

- You, too, Sheriff.
- Step back.


Any sign of 'em?

Not yet.

Just the usual foot traffic
and horse traffic

and a few farmers.

Luther Grant's son came by

with a freight wagon
full of corn.

- Luther Grant's son?
- That's right.

Looked just like him.
All right,

you boys, now, why don't
you go head over here?

Luther Grant ain't got a son.

He's got five daughters and
a nigger girl looks like him.

By the time these crackers
figure out she got past 'em,

she'll be long gone.

Now, we know
she's headed up north.

We should find 'em, collect
the reward for ourselves.

Maybe you can get
some alone time with her.

Tell me about it again.

Senator Seward sold me
a nice house on his property.

Big enough for everybody.

You and Daddy,


Henry, Junyah,

and Anger, too.

No massa forcing us
to do nothing.

We gonna be together.

I'm gonna spoil you

and take care of you.

I love you, Mama.

I love you, too, Minty.

It's empty.

Come on!

Get everybody under cover.

Get under.


- We got company.
- All right, let's go.


promise me
that you'll get Anger

and my parents to safety.

Why? What are you...?

I can't have Gideon
coming after 'em.

You want to help me?
Help my family.

Get 'em to safety.

Promise me.

- All right. All right.
- All right.

Go on, now.

Let's go.

Get her!

I want her alive.

Yea-yea, hyah-hyah.

Oh, you gonna die, bitch.

Alive, I said.




Name's Harriet.

Toss your gun.
Toss your gun!

Off your horse.

Off... your... horse.

On your knees.

Didn't have to end like this.

You could have stayed
with us...

if only you knew how to behave.

But you were unruly
and untamed.

I guess that's what
I liked about you.

And you liked me, too.

I know you did.

Praying for me when I was sick,

asking God to keep me well.

I asked God how
a sickly little boy

could think he owned me.

I do own you, Minty.

Even now, you're mine.

I was never yours, Gideon.

I was never nobody's property.

Ever since your daddy
sold my sisters,

I prayed for God to make me
strong enough to fight.

And that's what I prayed for
ever since.

I reasoned that there was one
or two things I had a right to.

Liberty or death.

If I couldn't have one,
I'd have the other.

You know what they're
gonna do to you

when they catch you?

They will tear you
limb from limb,

tar you, and burn you alive.

And even if I'm not there
to watch it,

I can almost smell it now.

Like roasting pig.

You gonna die right here.

On a freezing,
blood-soaked battlefield.

The moans of a generation
of young men...

dying around you in agony...

for a lost cause.

For a vile and wicked idea.

For the sin of slavery.

Can you hear 'em?

God don't mean people
to own people, Gideon.

Our time is near.

You tried to destroy my family,

but you can't.

You tried to destroy
my people, but you won't.

God has shown me the future,

and my people are free.

My people are free!

Suppose there's a snake

coiled at your feet,

and it shoots up to bite you.

Folks get scared
and send for a doctor

to cut out the bite.

But the snake,
he roll up there.

And while the doctor cutting,

he bites you again,
in a new place this time.

Finally you realize
the snake ain't gonna stop

till someone kills it.

Slavery is still alive.

Those rice fields downriver

are feeding rebel troops
with the toil

of a thousand slaves
still in bondage.

Our mission is
to free those slaves.

We've waited years
to be allowed

to fight in this war
against our own enslavement,

and it will not be won
without us.

Now is our time.

You ready to kill the snake?


♪ Wade in the water ♪

♪ Wade in the water, children ♪

♪ Wade in the water ♪

♪ God is gonna trouble ♪

♪ These waters. ♪


♪ Mmm-ay-ay-ah, mmm-mmm ♪

♪ Mmm-ay-ay-ah, mmm-mmm ♪

♪ Mmm-ay-ay-ah,
mmm-mmm ♪

♪ Mmm-ay-ay-ah, mmm-mmm... ♪

♪ I've been walking ♪

♪ With my face turned
to the sun ♪

♪ Mmm-mmm ♪

♪ Mmm-ay-ay-ah, mmm-mmm... ♪

♪ Weight on my shoulders ♪

♪ A bullet in my gun ♪

♪ Mmm-mmm ♪

♪ Mmm-ay-ay-ah... ♪

♪ Oh, I got eyes
in the back of my head ♪

♪ Mmm-ay-ay-ah... ♪

♪ Just in case I have to run ♪

♪ Mmm-mmm ♪

♪ Mmm-ay-ay-ah, mmm-mmm... ♪

♪ I do what I can when I can
while I can for my people ♪

♪ While the clouds roll back ♪

♪ And the stars fill
the night ♪

♪ That's when I'm gonna ♪

♪ Stand up, take my people ♪

♪ With me ♪

♪ Together we are going ♪

♪ To a brand-new home ♪

♪ Far across the river ♪

♪ Can you hear
freedom calling? ♪

♪ Calling me to answer ♪

♪ Gonna keep on keeping on ♪

♪ I can feel it in my bones ♪

♪ Mmm-mmm ♪

♪ Mmm-ay-ay-ah, mmm-mmm ♪

♪ Mmm-ay-ay-ah,
mmm-mmm ♪

♪ Mmm-ay-ay-ah, mmm-mmm... ♪

♪ Early in the morning ♪

♪ Before the sun
begins to shine ♪

♪ Ooh... ♪

♪ Mmm-ay-ay-ah, mmm-mmm... ♪

♪ We're gonna start moving... ♪

♪ Towards that separating eye ♪

♪ I'm wading
through muddy waters ♪

♪ You know I got
a made-up mind ♪

♪ I made up my mind ♪

- ♪ Mmm-ay-ay-ah ♪
- ♪ Mmm-mmm ♪

♪ And I don't mind
if I lose any blood ♪

♪ On the way to salvation ♪

♪ And I'll fight
with the strength that I got ♪

♪ Until I die ♪

♪ So I'm gonna stand up ♪

♪ Take my people with me ♪

♪ Together we are going ♪

♪ To a brand-new home ♪

♪ Far across the river ♪

♪ Can you hear
freedom calling? ♪

♪ Calling me to answer ♪

♪ Gonna keep on keeping on ♪

♪ And I know ♪

♪ What's around the bend ♪

♪ Might be hard to face
'cause I'm alone ♪

♪ And I just might fail ♪

♪ But Lord knows I'll try ♪

♪ Shining stars fill up
the sky ♪

♪ Stand up,
take my people with me ♪

♪ Together we are going ♪

♪ To a brand-new home ♪

♪ Far across the river ♪

♪ Can you hear
freedom calling? ♪

♪ Calling me to answer ♪

♪ Gonna keep on keeping on ♪

♪ I'm gonna stand up ♪

♪ Take my people with me ♪

♪ Together we are going ♪

♪ To a brand-new home ♪

♪ Far across the river ♪

♪ Do you hear
freedom calling? ♪

♪ Calling me to answer ♪

♪ Gonna keep on keeping on ♪

♪ I'm gonna stand up ♪

♪ Take my people with me ♪

♪ Together we are going ♪

♪ To a brand-new home ♪

♪ Far across the river ♪

♪ I hear freedom calling ♪

♪ Calling me to answer ♪

♪ Gonna keep on keeping on ♪

♪ I can feel it in my bones ♪

♪ Mmm-ay-ay-ah, mmm-mmm... ♪

♪ I go ♪

♪ To prepare a place for you ♪

♪ I go ♪

♪ To prepare a place for you ♪

♪ I go ♪

♪ To prepare a place for you. ♪