WASHINGTON (WUSA9) - President Barack Obama designated five new national monuments on Monday including the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Monument in Maryland.
The president signed the five proclamations in the Oval Office, designating the sites under the Antiquities Act. The other four sites were: Rio Grande del Norte National Monument in New Mexico; First State National Monument in Delaware; Charles Young Buffalo Soldiers National Monument in Ohio; and San Juan Islands National Monument in Washington state.
Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley issued the following statement:
"Today, President Obama made a long-held dream come true for countless Marylanders with his decision to forever commemorate the life and legacy of one of the Underground Railroad's most famed conductors, Harriet Tubman. By selecting Maryland's Eastern Shore as the site for the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Monument, President Obama will help us preserve the life and legacy of an American hero.
"This landmark designation comes two weeks after we broke ground on a new State Park in Cambridge bearing Harriet's name, which stands at the head of a scenic byway where she safely led scores of enslaved people to freedom. We are grateful to President Obama and our federal, local and private partners, including The Conservation Fund, for a donation of land that made this monument possible. Thanks to the hard work and commitment of many, Harriet Tubman's legacy will live on forever."