February 22

Greater Risks, Global Dynamics: New Insights into Local Free Black Communities Before the Civil War

Australia. Brazil. Haiti. The Atlantic & Pacific Oceans. The global dynamics of local free Black communities is coming to be better understood, as are the far greater risks that free Blacks in “free states” (like NY after 1827) faced on a daily business.

As abolition either approached or passed in northern states, the selling of northern free and enslaved Blacks into a life of enslavement in the US South took forms both illegal, and in some instances with a corrupt process, “legal” only on the surface appearance.

The usual stories of those fleeing enslavement from the US south to Canada with the help of Quakers is far more complex in terms of geography, and in terms of a reverse Underground Railroad leading free, or about-to-be-free persons into a life of enslavement.

You will meet local, named men, women and children engaged in the battle against enslavement until it was extinguished not just locally, but nationally.