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Follow the Drinking Gourd: Using the Science of Astronomy in History

Drawing of people looking at the Big Dipper and North Star

Product Type: Video Learning Clip
Audience: Educators, Informal Education, Students
Grade Levels: 5-12
Year: 1999
Subjects: History

This video segment explores how slaves traveling on the Underground Railroad used astronomy to guide them. Viewers learn that the slaves located the North Star by finding the Drinking Gourd, also known as the Big Dipper, which pointed to the star.

Follow the Drinking Gourd: Using the Science of Astronomy in History
Duration: 57 seconds
> View QuickTime  [3MB]


Other video learning clips in this series:
The Importance of Waterways in the Success of the Underground Railroad
Slaves and the Use of Horticulture Along the Underground Railroad
The Science Behind the Maps of the Underground Railroad
Navigating to Freedom With the North Star
Exploring and Preserving the Underground Railroad With Modern Technology
Archeological Research and the Underground Railroad Today

Page Last Updated: December 15th, 2014
Page Editor: Flint Wild