Christiana Resistance Timelines: The Catto Years
Federal marshals and Maryland slave hunters seek out suspected fugitive slaves in Christiana (Lancaster
County), PA, near Philadelphia. In their ensuing struggles with black and white abolitionists, one of the attackers is killed and another is seriously wounded. Thirty-six black men and five whites are charged with treason and conspiracy under the 1850 Fugitive Slave Law. Their trial, held at Independence Hall in Philadelphia, became a cause celebre among blacks and abolitionists. Thaddeus Stevens defended the accused. All defendants were found innocent by the jury.