The Underground Railroad was used during the late 18th century to around 1860. The underground railroad got its name after a slave catcher, was chasing an escaped slave and the slave suddenly disappeared. When the slave kidnapper returned to the town he said “Must of disappeared on an underground railroad”. The underground railroad was not underground or a railroad. The escaped slaves were called passengers on the railroad and conductors were usually former slaves and abolitionists such as Harriet Tubman, they manned the stops (called depots or stations) were they could receive food, water, clothes medicine. Songs were created to show the way for slaves to get to the underground railroad. They had to follow the drinking gourd (the big dipper which pointed to the north star) which could only be seen during night when the slaves would do most of their travelling.