The only photographic images of abolitionist and underground railroad operator Harriet Tubman that we are familiar with were taken in her old age, showing her as severe and tired. But now a new portrait has emerged- one that shows her in her prime. It was found in an album kept by Tubman's friend and fellow abolitionist Emily Howland. Biographer Dr. Kate Clifford Larson estimates that Tubman was between 43 and 46 years old in the photo, which was shortly after the Civil War. Tubman lived in Auburn, New York at the time.
"What's remarkable about this photograph is that she's so proud and dignified and beautiful. She looks so young," Larson said. "This is the vibrant young Tubman just coming off her work during the Civil War. She's building her life with her family in Auburn."
Larson continued, "It just surprised me, and I think it's going to surprise a lot of people."
The photograph, along with the album, containing historic photographs of other abolitionists, will go up for auction in March. -via Atlas Obscura