Lead: One hundred and fifty years ago the Republic was facing its greatest crisis. This continuing series examines the American Civil War. It is "A House Divided."

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: In the 1850s Southerners, aided by the Federal government, became more aggressive in their quite legal pursuit of escaped slave property under the Fugitive Slave Law. Northern confrontation became more pronounced. Nowhere was this opposition more intense than Massachusetts. James B. McPherson called Boston, “the cockpit of this new revolution,” of resistance. In early 1851 a freshly escaped black waiter, self-renamed Shadrach for protection, was grabbed by agents in a Boston coffeehouse.

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