Image 'In the swamp', 1863

TLF ID M008742

This is a colour lithographic card showing a fugitive slave hiding in a swamp. Mounted slave hunters with dogs are seen in the background looking for the escaped slave. The card was number seven in a collectible series of 12 album cards entitled 'The slave in 1863: a thrilling series of the Great Evil', produced by US artist Henry Louis Stephens in Philadelphia.

Educational details

Educational value
  • This illustration is a valuable source for the year 9 history depth study elective, Movement of peoples (1750-1901), which incorporates a study of the influence of the industrial revolution on the movement of peoples throughout the world, including the transatlantic slave trade. From the beginning of the slave trade, slaves succeeded in escaping. Where they could, bands of slaves hid in unpopulated areas. Where this was not possible, they attempted to reach Canada via the Underground Railway.
  • Slave owners offered rewards for the return of fugitive slaves and slave catchers made a living hunting down and returning escaped slaves. Many used especially trained dogs to follow the trails of escaped slaves. After the passage of the Fugitive Slave Act in 1850, slave catchers even had immunity to operate in those US states in the North and West where slavery was not allowed and local officials were forced to work with them.
  • This series of cards was produced primarily to appeal to the mass market in the North. It was intended to persuade northerners who were fighting the southern states in the American Civil War (1861-65) that their cause was just. Slavery was the 'Great Evil' and the cards showed the lives of slaves through their years of bondage, enforced separation from family, escape from slavery, reaching the northern lines, joining the Union army and dying for the cause of liberty.
Topics Slavery Escapees
Learning area
  • History
  • Studies of society and environment

Other details

  • Author
  • Person: Henry Louis Stephens
  • Description: author
  • Contributor
  • Name: The Library of Congress
  • Organization: The Library of Congress
  • Description: content provider
  • Address: UNITED STATES
  • URL:
  • Person: Henry Louis Stephens
  • Description: author
  • Publisher
  • Name: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Organization: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Description: Publisher
  • Address: VIC, AUSTRALIA
  • URL:
  • Resource metadata contributed by
  • Name: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Organisation: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Address: AUSTRALIA
  • URL:
Access profile
  • Generic
Learning Resource Type
  • Image
  • © Commonwealth of Australia, 2011, except where indicated otherwise. You may copy, communicate and modify this material for non-commercial educational purposes provided you retain all acknowledgements associated with the material.