Amistad Trials (1839-1840)

The improbable voyage of the schooner Amistad, and the court proceedings and diplomatic maneuverings that resulted from that voyage, form one of the most significant stories of the nineteenth century. When Steven Spielberg chose the Amistad case as the subject of his 1997 feature film, he finally brought it the attention the case had long deserved, but never received. The Amistad case energized the fledgling abolitionist movement and intensified conflict over slavery, prompted a former President to go before the Supreme Court and condemn the policies of a present Administration, soured diplomatic relations between the United States and Spain for a generation, and created a wave of interest in sending Christian missionaries to Africa.


Mutiny and Zig-Zagging to American Justice

Two sea captains, Peletiah Fordham and Henry Green, were shooting birds among the dunes at the eastern tip of Long Island on the morning of August 26, 1839, when they were startled to encounter four black men wearing only blankets....Continued