August 26, 2020
The Civil War was an unprecedented event in United States history that reached every corner of the country. Thousands of men lost their lives at Gettysburg in 1863 in a battle for freedom and unity; a battle whose after-effects still reach us today. Though the story of these men is one to be remembered, we often forget about the people they left behind.
July 29, 2020
The line between freedom and slavery in antebellum Gettysburg was remarkably thin. Slaveholders frequently crossed the border in pursuit of freedom seekers and free people of color who could pass as fugitives. Catherine “Kitty” Payne and her children, Eliza, Mary, and James, were a legally emancipated family living in Adams County, Pennsylvania, when Samuel Maddox, Jr., had them seized as slaves in July 1845.
June 01, 2020
In the face of Robert E. Lee’s Confederate invasion, African Americans fled en masse, fearing enslavement. Abraham Brian, a farmer on Cemetery Ridge, left with his family. Basil Biggs, a veterinarian, made a hasty retreat, as did Owen Robinson, a retailer of oysters and ice cream. They knew better than anyone that Gettysburg was not safe for people of color.