Following Their Journey 

After being captured, Mary and Emily were taken to Louisiana. Yet, there was an outbreak of yellow fever there. Mary and Emily were valuable “property.” Slave traders didn’t want them to get sick. So, they sent them back to Washington, D.C. There, abolitionists raised money to buy their freedom. It worked!

After they became free, they worked to free their brothers. I learned from records that a rich man in New York helped free Richard. Emily raised money to free Ephraim. Samuel escaped. John was the only brother who never made it home. He stayed in Louisiana.

Telling Their Story

I had done a lot of research. I had used many sources. Now, I knew the full story of the Pearl. I wrote a book about it. If you’d like to know what I learned, you can read it. It’s called Escape on the Pearl.

The Pearl escape helped change history. It made people want to end slavery. The lives of Mary, Emily, and their brothers were forever changed, too. Their story is part of the story of America. Telling it keeps their history alive.

author Mary Kay Ricks

Escape on the pearl. The heroic bid for freedom on the underground railroad. Mary Kay Ricks.