Ontario's Historical Plaques 


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Chloe Cooley and the 1793 Act to Limit Slavery in Upper Canada

Chloe Cooley and the 1793 Act to Limit Slavery in Upper Canada

Photo by contributor Colin Semple - November, 2007

Chloe Cooley and the 1793 Act to Limit Slavery in Upper Canada

Photo from Google Street View ©2010 Google - Posted November, 2010

Plaque Location

The Region of Niagara
The Town of Niagara-on-the-Lake
On the east side of Niagara Parkway
3 km north of York Road (Road 81) in Queenston


Coordinates: N 43 11.167 W 79 03.475

Map

Plaque Text

On March 14, 1793 Chloe Cooley, an enslaved Black woman in Queenston, was bound, thrown in a boat and sold across the river to a new owner in the United States. Her screams and violent resistance were brought to the attention of Lieutenant Governor John Graves Simcoe by Peter Martin, a free Black and former soldier in Butler's Rangers, and William Grisley, a neighbour who witnessed the event. Simcoe immediately moved to abolish slavery in the new province. He was met with opposition in the House of Assembly, some of whose members owned slaves. A compromise was reached and on July 9, 1793 an Act was passed that prevented the further introduction of slaves into Upper Canada and allowed for the gradual abolition of slavery although no slaves already residing in the province were freed outright. It was the first piece of legislation in the British Empire to limit slavery and set the stage for the great freedom movement of enslaved African Americans known as the Underground Railroad.

Related Ontario plaques
The Upper Canadian Act Against Slavery (1793)
The Underground Railroad in Canada
John Graves Simcoe 1752-1806
Lieutenant-Colonel John Butler 1725-1796

Related Toronto plaque
Lieutenant-General John Graves Simcoe 1752-1806

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Information

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Black History

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Niagara-on-the-Lake Plaques




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