Senators DeWine And Alexander Call For Increased Funding For Underground Railroad Education Programs

Posted on September 5, 2003

WASHINGTON — U.S. Senators Mike DeWine (R-OH) and Lamar Alexander (R-TN) want to invest more in history and education programs about the Underground Railroad. They have offered an amendment to the Fiscal Year 2004 Senate Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations bill that would increase funding for the Underground Railroad Educational and Cultural Program to $3 million. "As the author of the Underground Railroad Education and Cultural Act, I know we would do well to remind ourselves that at one of the darkest points in our history, brave group of blacks and whites took immense personal risk to work together for freedom and for liberty," said Senator DeWine." We should be proud of this American story and we should build upon it. Underground Railroad education programs will help ensure that our children and grandchild learn about this great story." "In our history books there is very little mention of men like my ancestor, the Reverend John Rankin, a conductor in the Underground Railroad, and about the slave-catchers from Kentucky who tried to assassinate him," Senator Alexander said. "This funding will go a long way to establish and enrich programs to teach new generations about this important chapter in our nation's history." The funds are awarded as competitive grants to nonprofit educational organizations that research, display, interpret, and collect artifacts relating to the history of the Underground Railroad.