In July 1979, the city of Harrisburg saw a slice of its history on a wall at 610 Maclay Street. Painted under the direction of Toni Truesdale, the main theme of the mural was the history of the Underground Railroad in Harrisburg, along with a famous visit from Frederick Douglass and William Lloyd Garrison.
In 1847, after both Garrison and Douglass returned from speaking tours in England, the two abolitionists decided to travel to Ohio to speak. Meeting in Philadelphia and speaking at other Pennsylvanian cities along the way, Douglass and Garrison reached Harrisburg on August 7, 1847. Garrison felt the city was “very much under the influence of Slavery. I do not anticipate a quiet meeting.” Garrison successfully finished his speech at the Dauphin County Court House to a full audience. But as Douglass reached the stage, audience members threw eggs. Douglass proceeded with his speech until he was interrupted by firecrackers. Someone also threw a stone at him. He observed that “the atrocious character of the proceedings is sufficiently palpable, and Harrisburg one day will be ashamed of it.”