Cass County Underground Railroad


1793         Federal Fugitive Slave Law enacted

1830         Approximately 100 families living in Cass County

1831         Stephen Bogue moves to Cass County

1832         The first fugitive slave arrives in Cass County

1837         Michigan becomes a State

1838        Chain Lake Baptist Church organized in Calvin Township

1842-47  Charles Osborn, early abolitionist preacher, lives across the street from
                 the James E. Bonine house 

1843        Young’s Prairie Anti-Slavery Society formed

1843        James E. Bonine moves to Cass County

1847        Kentucky Raid—Kentucky slave catchers attempt to recapture escaped 
                 slaves living in Young’s Prairie.  They fail.

1849       Mt. Zion church established in Calvin Township

1849       Slaveholders involved in the Kentucky Raid sue for value of ‘property’ in 
                Detroit Circuit Court.  Case dismissed in 1851, but court costs were heavy

1850      Enhanced Fugitive Slave Law passed by U.S. Congress

1855      African Americans vote in Cass County school elections

1863     Abraham Lincoln signs the Emancipation Proclamation

Cass County and the Underground Railroad

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Underground Railroad Society

of Cass County, Michigan