Philadelphia was the birthplace of the anti-slavery movement and there was a lot of controversy and conflict during the early and mid 19th century as to different state laws regarding slavery. It was not uncommon for black people in the north to be kidnapped and taken south where they were sold into slavery. They claimed to be capturing escaped slaves but Pennsylvania had a law that the burden of proof lay with the alleged slaved owner/kidnappers. Notably, there was the case that reached the Supreme Court, Prigg v. Pennsylvania
, in which Edward Prigg had kidnapped a black woman named Margaret Morgan from Pennsylvania and sold her into slavery in the south.
This story from the Ambler Gazette, just outside Philly, holds echoes of Margaret Morgan's story and the Prigg v. Pennsylvania case. Click the link below to read the full article on page 7.
Source: The Ambler Gazette, February 17, 1898, Page 7. Access Pennsylvania Digital Repository.
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