The Underground Railroad and Precursors to War

The Underground Railroad and Precursors to War (HMF4W)

Location: York, PA 17401 York County
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Country: United States of America
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N 39° 57.749', W 76° 43.673'

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Among the events in the 1850s that helped drive the nation into civil war, the Christiana Riot put a controversial new law to a bloody test. The Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 ordered federal officers to arrest suspected runaway slaves; it also threatened imprisonment to anyone aiding a runaway. In 1851, Edward Gorsuch, a Maryland farmer, heard that four of his escaped slaves had been seen in southern Pennsylvania. With an armed posse, Gorsuch arrived at William Parker's Christiana home, where fugitives had been hiding. Parker, an escaped slave himself from Maryland, had passed first through York before settling in Christiana. After neighbors gathered to oppose the posse, Gorsuch was shot and killed. Federal authorities charged participants with treason, but all were acquitted. Southerners fumed over the verdict. John Brown's raid on the Federal arsenal in Harper's Ferry, Virginia, lit the country's already short fuse. The Federal force sent after Brown included York resident Lieutenant Michael P. Small. Among Brown's raiders was Osborne Perry Anderson who escaped to Chambersburg on foot. From there he turned to the Underground Railroad for safety. A local conductor, Freedman William C. Goodridge, hid him in York. Anderson eventually escaped to Canada.
HM NumberHMF4W
Series This marker is part of the Pennsylvania: Pennsylvania Civil War Trails series
Historical Period19th Century
Historical PlaceTown
Marker TypeHistoric District
Marker ClassHistorical Marker
Marker StyleFree Standing
Year Placed2009
Placed ByCivil War Trails
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Saturday, September 20th, 2014 at 11:52am PDT -07:00
Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 352423 N 4425022
Decimal Degrees39.96248333, -76.72788333
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 39° 57.749', W 76° 43.673'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds39° 57' 44.9400" N, 76° 43' 40.3800" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)717
Can be seen from road?Yes
Is marker in the median?No
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling South
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 13 W Market St, York PA 17401, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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