What were the Fugitive slave Laws? Slavery existed in America at the time of the Revolutionary War, as did fugitive slave laws. Slaves were brought to America by the British; many were sold as war booty. The British put a system in place that made it illegal to return a slave to his or her former master. Slaves could be free or not free; some were not even American citizens.
So what were the fugitives? Many were not free but they had left their masters to go home to a better life elsewhere. Some escaped while traveling through a treaty with the Cherokee Indians. Others were considered criminals and joined the Underground Railroad, an intricate and daring network of escaped slaves headed for the free states of the north.
In the year 1780 Congress voted to set up a commission to find these fugitives. Roger Deaves was the first U.S. delegate to the Continental Congress, and he was instrumental in the creation of the American Fugitive System. He was also the first U.S. Speaker of the House of Representatives. He was also the best supporting actor in the film Washington, Texas, starring Steve McQueen.
In the film, Deaves plays a character named Aaron Chase, who is a fugitive from the law. He joins a band of escaping slaves led by the well-known character, Ben Corbett. The novel’s real story begins in Georgia, when the Union Pacific Railroad captured the unfinished tenth wheeler Victoria in order to use it as a slave ship. A group of passengers and the crew took off from the ship and escaped to Oregon.
Throughout the film, the characters travel through various scenes. At one point, the chase takes place on a train. They get separated while they are traveling to a rendezvous and are pursued by a band of Union sharpshooters. The group eventually makes it to the Union Pacific tracks where they are reunited with Ben. The Union Pacific has now joined the United States Army and the fugitive from justice, Aaron Chase, is allowed to live free within the system.
At the start of the movie, the fugitive and his accomplices are hiding out near an old west saloon. While they wait for the saloon boss to arrive, they are attacked by a band of bounty hunters. Chase then tracks down the band and the Union soldiers who were guarding the treasure and end the chase.
Best actress wins for Davis and the screenplay went to James Newton Howard for writing. Davis also received a best screenplay award from the American Film Institute for her work on the chase. She is up for another Academy Award nomination for her role. Her second Oscar nomination will be for a supporting role in the chase.
Based on the book “The Run” by Michael Connelly, The Fugitive is an intriguing and suspenseful film that deserves the designation of Best Supporting Actor. With an outstanding cast, including Diahann Carroll, Alexander Flores, and Michael Gambon, The Fugitive is one of the best films of the year. If you want to see what an Oscar-worthy drama can offer, make sure to see The Fugitive this year.
In 1819, two men, thinking that they would be safer if they ran away to Louisiana, took a group of twenty-two African-American men and women as well as their luggage and belongings to the Gulf coast state of Texas. There, they formed the Texas Fraternity for Prevention of Slavery. The fugitives hoped to avoid capture by leaving their large numbers of prized cotton and grain in transit. Their trip was supposed to be a one-week vacation. Instead, they became the first slaves of the law enforcement agents, who rounded up the group and transported them to the old penal institution in Leakey, Texas.
In order to protect the fugitive slaves, the United States government created the Magnolia Plan, which prohibited the transfer of any individuals of African lineage to the area of the Mississippi River. The Magnolia Plan was the beginning of the Civil War. The fugitive slaves remained in hiding and were protected under the fugitive slave acts of 1819 and the Emancipation Proclamation.
The fugitive slave clause of the constitution of the US was never legally enforced, because the country was undergoing rapid expansion at the time. Slaves brought across the border states could not vote, had no legal rights, and in the beginning did not even possess any real property, since they were considered to be free countries in terms of land. But in the years that followed, after the slave trade had begun to decline in the New World, the US government began to enact laws that empowered slave owners and prohibited the free movement of people. These laws, in combination with the Magnolia Plan and the Mississippi Purchase Act of 1819, ensured that all people of African descent would have their very own nation-state – free states.