WASHINGTON (AP & WXXI News) — Maryland's U.S. senators are sponsoring legislation to bring a statue of Harriet Tubman to the U.S. Capitol Building.
The Maryland General Assembly passed legislation in 2012 creating the Harriet Tubman Statue Commission to raise money and commission a statue for display in the U.S. Capitol Building. But Congress must pass legislation to accept the donation.
The bill Sens. Chris Van Hollen and Ben Cardin announced Monday will direct the Joint Committee on the Libraries to enter into an agreement to accept the statue.
Van Hollen says this is an important way to honor Tubman's contributions to the nation's history. Tubman, who was born in Maryland, led slaves to freedom as a conductor on the Underground Railroad, served as a Union spy and pushed for women's suffrage.
Tubman lived part of her life in Auburn, and earlier this year, New York lawmakers and federal parks officials gathered in Washington to formally establish the Harriet Tubman National Historical Park in New York.