In the 1850s, tensions between slave states and free states were rising, and talks of secession had already begun. Uncle Tom’s Cabin, a famous anti-slavery novel, was published in 1852, which was dramatically opposed by southern states. Future Vice President of the Confederacy, Alexander Hamilton Stephens spend much of these years becoming a party leader and a political force in Georgia. The Dred Scott case in 1857 further outraged anti-slavery proponents including Abraham Lincoln. In 1859 as a response to the case and increasing tensions with abolitionists, Georgia outlawed giving slaves their freedom should the owner die. “Any free person of color wandering or strolling about, or leading an idle, immoral or profligate course of life” could be sold into slavery, and additional free people of color were explicitly prohibited from entering the state. Georgia’s Civil War governor, Joseph Emerson Brown was elected in 1857, and he would hold this position until the end of the war.
In other history, famed gunslinger and friend of Wyatt Earp, Doc Holiday was born in Griffin Georgia in 1851. President Theodore Roosevelt’s mother, Mittie Bulloch of Roswell, Georgia, married his father in 1852. She would both be the mother of a president and the grandmother of a first lady (Eleanor Roosevelt). Photo: Dred Scott, "Century Magazine," 1887. Library of Congress
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