While working on a geneology assignment, Lisa discovers a diary written by her ancestor, Eliza Simpson. She reads it, hoping to discover an Simpson in her family tree that was not an alcoholic or criminal. She discovers through reading the diary that Eliza and her mother Mabel were part of the underground railroad. Eliza sneaks into a ball hosted by Colonel Burns to meet a slave named Virgil, but as the two make their escape, they are spotted by a mounted patrol. Unfortunately, the diary is too disintegrated for Lisa to read on, and she cannot bear not knowing if Virgil escaped. 
Lisa and Marge discover a cookbook at the local library written by Mabel. In it is an anecdote that tells how Eliza and Virgil evaded capture by donning disguises at a traveling circus. They make it back to the Simpson household, but Eliza's father Hiram is suspicious of Virgil's presence. Virgil makes him 'wheel cakes' and Hiram swears to keep Virgil's whereabouts a secret. 
Lisa believes Eliza to be a hero for helping Virgil escape, and tells this story at a Black History Month presentation at Springfield Elementary. Milhouse, however, challenges her story and suggests that Eliza was a coward. He reads from the journal of his ancestor, Milford Van Houten, who witnessed Colonel Burns bribe Hiram with a new pair of shoes in exchange for giving up Virgil. Eliza does not stand up against the Colonel and Lisa is crushed to think her ancestor was a coward. 
Homer convinces Grandpa Simpson to tell the rest of story to raise Lisa's spirits. He tells of how Mabel threatened to castrate the Colonel with a shotgun and then escaped with Virgil to Canada. There, she divorced Hiram and married Virgil. Grandpa reveals that Virgil and Mabel's son was his great-grandfather, and therefore the Simpsons are 1/64 African American. When questioned why he kept this secret, he notes that his generation was racist. Marge notes that her father was French, to which Homer attributes his own drinking.

Pop Culture Connections - Outgoing

What Songs are featured in this Television Episode?

It plays...

My Old Kentucky Home
written by

This Song is played in The Color Yellow
Virgil plays the song on his violin in the "Crusty" Clown's Circus.
O Canada composed by Calixa Lavallée; written by Robert Stanley Weir

O Canada
composed by Calixa Lavallée; written by

This Song is played in The Color Yellow
The song plays as part of a melody during the end credits of the episode.

More Episodes From...

The Simpsons Season 21

# Title Air Date
The Simpsons
21:9 Thursdays with Abie Jan 3, 2009
21:1 Homer the Whopper Sep 27, 2009
21:2 Bart Gets a 'Z' Oct 4, 2009
21:3 The Great Wife Hope Oct 11, 2009
21:4 Treehouse of Horror XX Oct 18, 2009
21:5 The Devil Wears Nada Nov 15, 2009
21:6 Pranks and Greens Nov 22, 2009
21:7 Rednecks and Broomsticks Nov 29, 2009
21:8 O Brother, Where Bart Thou? Dec 13, 2009
21:10 Once Upon a time in Springfield Jan 10, 2010
21:11 Million Dollar Maybe Jan 31, 2010
21:12 Boy Meets Curl Feb 14, 2010
21:13 The Color Yellow Feb 21, 2010
21:14 Postcards from the Wedge Mar 14, 2010
21:15 Stealing First Base Mar 21, 2010
21:16 The Greatest Story Ever D'ohed Mar 28, 2010
21:17 American History X-cellent Apr 11, 2010
21:18 Chief of Hearts Apr 18, 2010
21:19 The Squirt and the Whale Apr 25, 2010
21:20 To Surveil With Love May 2, 2010
21:21 Moe Letter Blues May 9, 2010
21:22 The Bob Next Door May 16, 2010
21:23 Judge Me Tender May 23, 2010

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