Houston Matters

Novel Questions Events Surrounding 1860 Dallas Fire

Silent We Stood is a novel that considers whether Texas played a bigger part in the abolitionist movement during the 1800s than many historians believe. Author Henry Chappell’s story begins with the fire that broke out in Dallas in July of 1860. There was fear that the fires marked the start of a Texas slave […]

Silent We Stood is a novel that considers whether Texas played a bigger part in the abolitionist movement during the 1800s than many historians believe.

Author Henry Chappell’s story begins with the fire that broke out in Dallas in July of 1860. There was fear that the fires marked the start of a Texas slave rebellion led by abolitionists. Three slaves were eventually accused of arson and hanged without a trial.

The Dallas fire and executions serve as the historical backdrop for Chappell’s novel, which spins the tale of a small band of abolitionists working in secrecy in Dallas.

Chappell recently spoke with Houston Matters’ Maggie Martin during a visit to Houston. He says his research began over a decade ago.

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