Revisit: HOLMES V. FORD (1853)

The lawsuit filed by Robin and Polly Holmes against Nathaniel Ford in 1852 is often cited as the legal event that ended slavery in Oregon. This is not accurate. Legally, Oregon was anti-slavery throughout the antebellum period. The provisional government prohibited slavery in 1843; the territorial government did so in 1848. Finally, Oregonians included an anti-slavery article in the 1857 statehood constitution. The Holmes v. Ford case … Continue reading Revisit: HOLMES V. FORD (1853)