In 1641 the Massachusetts Body of Liberties legalized slavery. Masseachusetts was the first future state to legalize slavery
Slavery in the United States
Bacon's Rebellion was a rebellion comprised of black slaves and black and white indentured servants. This caused the ruling class to enact laws that discriminated by race and social status.
Slaves in South Carolina burned an armory and killed whites. The colonial militia stopped the slaves eventually, but 80 people died as a result of the rebellion
Quakers Prohibit Slavery
The Society of Friends (Quakers) bans its members from owning slaves or buying and selling of slaves. The Quakers continue to play an important role in the abolition movement
First Black Church
The Silver Bluff Baptist Church was established in 1773, in South Carolina as a separate black church. Black churches would become some the most important forces the liberation of black. (Ex. SCLC)
First Aboloition Society
The Society for the Relief of Free Negroes Unlawfully Held in Bondage was the first American abolition society. It was founded April 14, 1775, in Philadelphia and held four meetings.
Vermont Bans Slavery
Vermont banned slavery in 1777. It was the first state to do so
Elizabeth Freeman and another slave successfully sue for their freedom in Massachusetts. The judge's decision is treated as the precedent and slavery if effectively declared illegal in the state.
Fugitive Slave Act & Three-Fifths Compromise
The Fugitive Slave Act stated an escaped slave who enters free territory can be returned to it. The Three-Fifths Compromise stated that when how the population of a would be counted, slaves would be counted as three-fifths of a person
In the new northwestern territories (Ohio, Indiana, Wisconsin, Michigan, and part of Minnesota) slavery prohibited, but slave owners are allowed to bring their slaves. This caused major controversy.
Military Service Banned
As of 1792 blacks could not serve in the military. This ban would be lifted during the Civil War. (1862)
Second Great Awakening
In this time period, there was a great amount of Protestant religious revivalism. Slaves were converted to Christianity on a large scale, and independent black churches were formed in the North, such as the African Methodist Episcopal.
An enslaved blacksmith named Gabriel led a rebellion in Virginia. As a result, Gabriel and 25 others were hanged. State laws were created limiting movement of free blacks and tighter restrictions on the education of slaves.
Underground Railroad Formed
The first recorded activity of the Underground Railroad begins in Pennsylvania in 1804. It was organized by the Wrights, a Quaker family. Thousand of slaves would be freed by the Underground Railroad.
Slave Trade Outlawed
In 1807 the importation of slaves into the United States was outlawed. This however, was not enforced and many more were imported.
Freedom in Canada
In 1819, Canada declared that all black residents were free. Tens of thousands slaves would escape to Canada through the Underground Railroad.
The Missouri Compromise prohibited slavery south of the border of Missouri in the Louisiana Territory. MIssouri was added to the Union as a slave state and Maine as a free state to keep the balance.
Denmark Vesey, a freeman, was found to be plotting a massive slave revolt in South Carolina. His plot discovered before it could be enacted and him and the other "conspirators" were hanged.
In 1831, The Liberator, an abolitionist newspaper began publication. It was founded by important abolotionist William Lloyd Garrison, and ran unti 1865.
Nat Turner's Rebellion
Nat Turner, a black Baptist preacher, believing to be inspired by God leads a violent slave rebellion in Virginia killing 57 whites. Over 50 were hung as a result and the rebellion caused abololition to be considered in Virginia.
In major Northern and Northeastern cities, there are riots against both African Americans and anti-slavery advocated. Many Northerners were opposed to abolition believing it would ruin the economy, and were racist (especially the recently immigrated Irish).
Gag Rule on Abolition
Congress faced many demands from abolitionists, so a gag rule was passed to focus what they believed to be more important issues. Supporters of the gag rule believed slavery should not be discussed at all in Congress. Eventually due to constant petitioning by abolitionists the gag rule was removed.
Anti-Slavery Socity Splits
AN important abolitionist group, the American Anti-Slavery Society splits due to division over women's rights. This widened the gap between moderate abolitionists and radicals.
Narravtive of the Life of Frederick Douglass
Frederick Douglass published his first autobiography in 1845. It became one of the most important slave narratives and important books of the century.
The North Star
Frederick Douglass' The North Star (newspaper) goes into publication for 4 years. Its motto was “Right is of no sex—Truth is of no color—God is the Father of us all, and we are brethren.”
Free Soil Party
Anti-slavery groups create the Free Soil Party, a party focused on halting the westward expansion fo slavery. They were not like abolitionists in that they did not want slavery in the west for moral reasons, but rather economic opportunities for whites. They disbanded in 1852.
Seneca Falls Covention
A women rights convention was held in Seneca Falls, New York. This was very important as it also put many important abolitionists in the same place.
Compromise of 1850
The Compromise of 1850 was an agreement between the South and the North. The results were: the Fugitive Slave Law was strengthened, California was a free state, Texas cedes territory to the federal government and slavery is decided by popular sovereignty in Utah and Nevade (they voted yes on slavery).
Uncle Tom's Cabin
Harriet Beecher Stowe writes Uncle Tom's Cabin in 1852. It is an abolitionist novel and was the bestselling novel of the century, second best selling any book, behind the Bible
The Kansas-Nebraska act created both territories, Kansas and Nebraska, and allowed popular sovereignty to decide whether or not slavery was legal. (Both voted no slavery). This act was extremely controversial.
Kansas becomes the most important region for the slavery debate There was much fighting during this time over slavery.
Dred Scott, a slave tries for his freedom and is denied. With this case the Supreme Court denied citizenship to all African Americans.
Abraham Lincoln was elected in 1860 with 40% of the vote and no Southern support. He was very important in abolishing slavery
The Civil War was fought from 1861 - 1865 between the Confederacy and the Union. It was fought over many issues, but by far the most important one was slavery which is often cited as the cause of the war.
With the Emancipation Proclamation, Lincoln declared all slaves in Confederate states free. However, this freedom was dependant on an Union victory.
The XII Amendment made slavery illegal, except as a punishment for a crime. It also declare that Congress has the power to enforce with "appropriate legislation"