Harriet Tubman’s ‘Shadow of a Face’: New Monument Advances Inclusive History

Friday, March 10, is Harriet Tubman Day, which marks the 110th anniversary of Harriet Tubman’s passing on March 10, 1913. Last year, we celebrated Tubman’s bicentennial birthday with Ms. magazine’s Tubman 200 project. Today, we continue in the celebration of our Black feminist hero as we recognize the latest Harriet Tubman Monument. Designed by artist Nina Cooke John, Shadow of a Face opened to the public yesterday in Newark, N.J., in Harriet Tubman Square, renamed from Washington Park on Juneteenth of 2022. 

The new Harriet Tubman monument replaces a statue of Christopher Columbus, which was removed in 2020. Newark’s arts and cultural affairs director Fayemi Shakur said the city’s choice to replace of a symbol of conquest with “an ideal figure for democracy and freedom” is part of a larger project of healing.