Social/Cultural Acts Leading Up to Civil War (1850s)

By kelhein
  • Slave Population

    The United States census of 1850 stated that the U.S. slave population is 3,204,313. This is a heavy topic of discussion against slave owning people and antislavery activists.
  • Fugitive Slave Act of 1850

    Under this Act, slave owners could reclaim a runaway slave by establishing ownership before a commissioner rather than in a jury trial. This continued to bring tension in the states and with slaves.
  • Fred Wilkins Escape

    A crowd of black men in Boston frees fugitive slave Shadrach Minkins, also known as Fred Wilkins. He was being held in the federal courthouse. They help him escape to Canada
  • Confronting Slave Owners

    Free blacks confront a slave owner, his son and their group of friends who are trying to capture two fugitive slaves near Christiana, Pennsylvania. During this confrontation, the slave owner is killed and his son is seriously wounded.
  • Jerry McHenry Escape

    Black and white abolitionists free fugitive slave Jerry McHenry from the Syracuse, New York jail. They help him escape to Canada
  • Lemmon v. New York

    A New York court frees eight slaves in transit from Virginia with their owner. This continues to create a divide between free and slave owning states.
  • Uncle Tom's Cabin

    Uncle Tom's Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe is published. The novel depicts slave owner "Simon Legree" as evil, and the slave "Uncle Tom" as the hero. It sells between 500,000 and 1,000,000 copies in U.S. and even more in Great Britain. It also is adapted into a play and millions of people come to watch it. By June 1852, Southerners move to suppress the book's publication in the South.