Sawyer Tours, LLC

(410) 397-3743 - (443) 521-5325 -


Welcome to Dorchester County! We are a family-owned and operated business based right here in Dorchester County on Maryland's Eastern Shore. We have offered packaged Dorchester County tours for more than 15 years to bus companies, travel organizations, senior centers, AARP chapters, church groups, and many other groups who are interested in learning about what Dorchester County has to offer!

Our Harriet Tubman Tour

Harriet Tubman led approximately 70 of her family and friends to freedom from the clutches of slavery between 1849 and 1860, through what is known as the Underground Railroad. She also led an armed military raid during the Civil War for the Union Army. Later in life, she established a nursing home on her property in upstate New York.

She was born and raised right here in Dorchester County. This is a great tour for those who want to learn about the life and accomplishments of Harriet Tubman, as well as local African-American history!

Harriet Tubman Freed 70 of Her Family and Friends on the Underground Railroad
Meet your step-on tour guide at the Dorchester County Visitor Center in Cambridge, Maryland. Travel along the "Highway to Freedom," a road along which most of the slaves who escaped from this area lived. Listen to the tour guide narrate about the life and accomplishments of Harriet Tubman, as the bus makes its way to the various destinations of the tour. Our tour guide completed training from the state of Maryland, and is a Harriet Tubman Certified Business Host.

Ride past and learn about key landmarks such as the Stanley Institute, and Stewart's Canal. Stewart's Canal is where Harriet Tubman worked alongside her father as a young adult and learned from the secret communication network of African-American mariners. It is also where she learned many of the outdoor skills that she would need during her rescue missions later on.

The Stanley Institute in Cambridge, Maryland Stewart's Canal

Visit the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center, where after a brief introduction from the rangers, your group will see numerous exhibits that illustrate Harriet Tubman and her work as a freedom fighter, leader, and liberator. Your group will come away with a solid understanding and appreciation of what Harriet Tubman and fellow freedom-seekers had to endure during this dark period of American history.

Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center

Step back on the bus and head down to Hoopers Island, where your group will enjoy a buffet-style seafood meal at Old Salty's Restaurant and Gift Shop. This meal includes crab cakes, soft-shelled crabs, fish, clam strips, chicken, ham, salad, vegetables, baked pineapple casserole, and much more! Water and iced tea are standard for drinks. *Make it a crab, shrimp, and chicken feast instead for an extra $15 per person.
Chesapeake Bay Crab Cakes Soft-Shelled Crabs from the Chesapeake Bay

After lunch, visit one of three places that your group will be sure to enjoy. You can choose between the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center, Madhouse Oysters, and Layton's Chance Vineyard & Winery.

1. Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center: This facility is right along the path between the various landmarks that we'll be seeing during this tour. Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge has 28,000 acres of forest, fields, marshes, and waterways, and is the perfect representation of the terrain and landscape that Harriet Tubman and her charges had to traverse as they sought freedom in the North. The Visitor Center has many exhibits of the various wildlife species that inhabit this area, along with a theater, butterfly garden, and telescopes through which you can see eagles nests.

Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center

2. Madhouse Oysters: Madhouse Oysters is an oyster aquaculture facility on Hoopers Island. Oyster aquaculture is one of the newest industries in the state of Maryland. This facility farms oysters from grain-sized larvae to full-size edible oysters. Employees will discuss their oyster farming process and show you some of the equipment that they use.
Oyster Larvae from Madhouse Oysters Madhouse Oysters Logo Madhouse Oysters

3. Layton's Chance Vineyard & Winery: Layton's Chance is Dorchester's first and only winery. It is owned and operated by the Layton family, who have farmed the fields of Dorchester County for more than 100 years. Here, you will enjoy a tour of the vineyard, see the equipment that they use in their winemaking process, and sample a variety of their wines. You will also have the opportunity to purchase wine to take home.

Layton's Chance Vineyard & Winery Layton's Chance Wines

On the way back to Cambridge, ride by and learn from your tour guide about the Brodess Farm where Harriet Tubman worked as a child, the Bucktown Village Store, and Scott's Chapel, where Harriet and her family may have attended church. You will also be riding through Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge, so keep your eyes open for some of the wildlife in the area, like Canada geese, great blue herons, deer, and bald eagles!

Bucktown Village Store Scott's Chapel, Bucktown United Methodist Church

This is our best-selling tour, and for good reason! There is a lot of interest in the story of Harriet Tubman, and it is a story that needs to be told.

Wanna know what people are saying about this tour? Check out these testimonials!

I wish to thank you for the wonderful and memorable experience we all shared.  I am still receiving calls from members of the Club telling me how much they learned from your historical presentation and the additional information they saw and heard during their visit to the Harriet Tubman Center. The professional and courteous manner of you and the Park Rangers throughout the Tour played a significant role in making this one of our best trips of the year. You will hear from us again when we plan future visits to the Eastern Shore. - Gwen Whiting, Baltimore, MD

"Dave, the day was wonderful and I have already directed two new trips coming your way. You really do your homework and did a fabulous job. Well done!"- Diana Ziegler, Southern Maryland Antique Arts Association

"Thank you so much for arranging such a wonderful tour! You're the best!" - Perla D'Amico, Bel Air Wanderers

Suggested itinerary (times are approximate and may be adjusted)

9:30am: Meet step-on tour guide at Dorchester County Visitor Center in Cambridge

10:30am: Visit the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center

12:30pm: Lunch at Old Salty's Restaurant on Hoopers Island

2:30pm: Visit either the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center, Madhouse Oysters, or Layton's Chance Vineyard & Winery

4:30pm: Conclusion of Tour

25-person minimum



Sawyer Tours, LLC

(410) 397-3743 - (443) 521-5325 -


Harriet Tubman Certified Business Host