With proceeds that came from publication of his biography, combined with a scholarship, Burns received an education at Oberlin College in Ohio. He served as a non-ordained minister until his early death from tuberculosis at the age of 28 in St. Catharines on July 17, From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For other people named Anthony Burns, see Anthony Burns disambiguation. Fetridge and Company. Retrieved April 26, Zebley In David S.
Hedler and Jeanne T. Hedler ed. Encyclopedia of the American Civil War. Retrieved May 26, Thomas James, by Himself". Documenting the American South. Retrieved June 3, Massachusetts Historical Society. Retrieved May 10, Retrieved McPherson New York: Bantam Books.
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Today was his 21 birthday. More than any other city in the North, Boston was considered a haven for runaways; its black community was especially strong and well organized and it was a city where black and white abolitionists were willing to act on their convictions. All this came into play in May of In an attempt to find a compromise that would save the Union, Congress had passed the Fugitive Slave Act in September of The new law gave slave owners or their agents the right to seize runaway slaves merely by presenting sworn testimony proving ownership.
Law-enforcement officials throughout the North were required to arrest suspected fugitives and help return them to their masters. Anyone who aided an escaped slave or interfered with his or her arrest was subject to fine and imprisonment. The law significantly increased anti-slavery sentiment among Northerners. Vigilance Committees were formed to aid fugitive slaves, and some of the more militant abolitionists turned to civil disobedience. In the early spring of , Anthony Burns escaped from Alexandria, Virginia, by hiding on a ship bound for the North.
He arrived in Boston at the end of March; before long, his owner learned of his whereabouts and came to reclaim him. Marshalls arrested Burns and confined him to the federal courthouse. Word of the arrest spread quickly.
Handbills announcing "The Kidnappers Are Here! Slavery opponents hastily dispatched letters seeking support from abolitionists in other towns. Two days after the arrest, close to 5, abolitionists, most of them white, gathered at Fanueil Hall. A smaller group, mostly black men and women, met at the Tremont Temple. While the Fanueil Hall group debated strategy, those meeting at the church decided to act: they would march to the courthouse and free Burns.
A shot rang out. Half a dozen sheriff's deputies beat back two men who attempted to enter the building.
Fugitive Slave Act of | The Canadian Encyclopedia
Meanwhile, those meeting at Fanueil Hall had learned of the rescue-in-progress, and several hundred headed to the courthouse. Police later reported that protesters threw bricks, fired pistols, and attacked another door with axes. Believing that resistance was "of no use" and that "I shall fare worse if I do [resist]," Burns sealed his own fate by identifying Charles Stuttle as his owner. It was all in vain. After the successful rescue of Shadrach Minkins in , federal authorities were better prepared.