Slavery

No Small Feat–A Daring Civil War Escape

In the very early hours of May 13, 1862, a slave named Robert Smalls decided to make his move. Smalls had worked his way up to becoming a wheelman--a pilot--and the Confederates used him to...

Frederick Douglass: ‘A War Upon the Immortal Spirit’

Frederick Douglass, the famed orator and abolitionist, saw his life change in one afternoon in 1833. Learn about his incredible battle with an overseer--a struggle that changed a slave into a man, he said. Click...

The Amazing Story of John Newton

Amazing grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me. I once was lost, but now am found, Was blind but now I see. Chances are, you have heard these lyrics many times. These are the...

The Strange Worlds of Ellen and Eliza

Take a good look at the two women pictured here. They were half-sisters, but they lived in two entirely different worlds. One was the other's slave. Ellen and Eliza had the same father, Major James P....

The Lincoln Movie Trailer

Ted Johnson, a wonderful actor I got to visit with at this year's Gideon Media Arts Conference, plays a small but very important role in the upcoming Stephen Spielberg movie, Lincoln. He has pointed...

Henry ‘Box’ Brown on CBS

Happy Henry Day! This week marks the 166th anniversary of Henry Brown's amazing escape from slavery. On March 23, 1849, Henry Brown was sealed inside a wooden box, 3 feet by 2 feet by 2-1/2...

What Was the Real Lincoln League?

Timothy Webster, the most famous spy during the first year of the Civil War, first encountered the Lincoln League when he was taken to a secluded hideout in the woods. He was taken there...

Ellen’s Disguise

Jennifer Goran, a Champaign actress, did her first presentation this past week as Ellen Craft, the slave who escaped in 1848 by posing as a white man. Jennifer did a marvelous job bringing Ellen...

The New Abolitionists

Going Out on a Limb to Stop a Fast-Growing Crime: Modern Slavery   Miller McKim would never forget the day that a Richmond shoemaker named Samuel Smith showed up at his Philadelphia office with a most...

Crossing the Jordan–in Ohio

To many abolitionists, the Ohio River was the North's Jordan River, providing access to the Promised Land. The Ohio River was the dividing line between North and South, making it an important crossing point for...