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Emancipation Day Freedom Train Ride

July 31, 2020 @ 10:45 pm - August 1, 2020 @ 12:30 am EDT

About the Emancipation Day Underground Freedom Train Ride

The Emancipation Day “Underground Freedom Train” Ride is symbolic of the role of the Underground Railroad within Canada’s history. This train ride is a recognition of the historic date of Emancipation Day on August 1st when slavery was abolished in the British Empire. It is also a celebration of the power and potential of the peoples of African descent.

Since 2013, A Different Booklist Cultural Centre (ADBCC) partnered with the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) to provide an actual underground experience via its subway system to represent the underground railroad journey. Former enslaved people undertook an incredible and dangerous journey in their migration to Canada, and this symbolic train ride helps to keep history alive by connecting the past to the present and ultimately linking to the future.

The Emancipation Day “Underground Freedom Train” Ride is open to the public and may include poetry readings, musical entertainment, networking, and special activities. The route travels along the TTC subway from Union Station to Sheppard West Station. Easy access for departure at the end of the train ride/event.

Countdown to the 2020 Freedom Ride | Water and Reparations

This year’s Freedom Train Ride is going virtual! Get on board live on ADBCC’s Youtube page beginning at 10:45 PM on the eve of Emancipation day, Friday July 31st, 2020.

A Different Booklist Cultural Centre and the 2020 Freedom Train Ride Committee are pleased to announce this year’s Conductor, Ms. Dorothy Sharp. Dorothy Sharp is a pillar in the Ontario Black Community. Affectionately known as “Ms. Dolly”, she is over ninety years strong and is the matriarch of a family that has made significant contributions in Canada.  


This year we are connecting with people nationally and internationally with the theme of diasporic crossings, relationships, and furthering the conversations on reparations for people of African descent.  We have traveled by foot, by bus, by train and by water, and now we are traveling virtually.”


Catch the Freedom Train with some videos from previous years!

Our Partners



July 31, 2020 @ 10:45 pm EDT
August 1, 2020 @ 12:30 am EDT


A Different Booklist Cultural Centre
View Organizer Website


Online – Zoom
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