The Pasquotank River was an important gateway to freedom for many enslaved African Americans in northeastern North Carolina who claimed their own freedom. Freedom seekers would stow away or work their way along the maritime networks of which it was part, into the Great Dismal Swamp, or north to freedom. It was the first river recognized as part of the National Park Service National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom.
The River now serves as a popular waterway for travelers along the intracoastal waterway exploring the coast by boat. You can visit the Network to Freedom marker and immerse yourself in the scenery and beauty of the historic riverfront in downtown Elizabeth City.
The Network to Freedom program integrates historical places, museums, and interactive programs associated with the Underground Railroad on a national level.
If you’d like to learn more about runaway slave advertisements, check out: https://davidcecelski.com/2018/05/11/on-albemarle-sound-runaway-slaves-and-the-sea/