Beginning Date
Saturday, December 17, 1864
Starting Point
Mid Points
End Point

Near the end of December 1864, there was a rush of freedom seekers from Richmond, Virginia toward Union lines near the city.  Richmond newspapers reported on the flight and attributed it to rumors that enslaved Black men were about to be impressed into the Confederate army.  The Sentinel wrote:  "A regular panic and stampede has taken place among the negroes of this city. Between forty and fifty have run off to the Yankees since last Saturday, in most cases carrying their trunks and household goods. On Wednesday night seven negroes belonging to Mr. Valentine Ricklar, living just beyond Union Hill, went off, carrying all their furniture. The cause of the stampede is the report that has gotten abroad that all the male negroes are to be put into the army."  Responding to this report, the New York Herald observed that it proved that even potential promises of freedom were not enough to entice Black men into Confederate service:  "This stampede shows that if the negro can at once obtain his liberty by running off," wrote the Herald, "he is not going to remain and fight upon a mere promise of his freedom at the end of the war." 

Escape Numbers
Escape Numbers Comment
40 to 50