WASHINGTON, D.C. – As Women’s History Month gets underway, this week, U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) renewed her nearly decade-long push to put Harriet Tubman on the $20 bill in an upcoming piece of legislation addressing the issue.
An escaped enslaved woman, Tubman helped other escaped slaves find their way to freedom on the Underground Railroad in the first half of the 19th Century.
Shaheen has long urged U.S. Department of Treasury officials through three different administrations to feature Tubman’s likeness on the $20 bill, criticizing a lack of action on the subject.
Tubman was set to replace former president Andrew Jackson on the $20 after efforts by the Obama Administration, citing criticism from Native American nations in Jackson’s role in forcibly relocating several Native American tribes from the U.S. Southeast to Oklahoma in what has been called the Trail oF Tears.
Tubman would be the first woman and Black American to be printed on a U.S. bill denomination.
“Images on U.S. paper currency are a reflection of our values and history, and more than that, these images send a message to Americans and world travelers about the story of America. Some of the most significant chapters of our collective history were shaped by women, which is why it’s egregious that a woman has never been featured on U.S. paper currency. That status quo has to go,” said Shaheen. “I’m renewing my call to the Department of Treasury to redesign the $20 bill in Harriet Tubman’s likeness. An abolitionist, a patriot and an American icon – Harriet Tubman is supremely deserving of this honor. I’ve pushed numerous administrations to make this a priority and I won’t stop until we see it through. Women and girls, and particularly communities of color, deserve to see themselves represented and honored on U.S. paper currency.”