Historian Richard Bell will present on his new book, Stolen: Five Free Boys Kidnapped Into Slavery and Their Astonishing Odyssey Home (Simon & Schuster, 2019) on Tuesday, October 22 at 6:00 pm in Joseph Theater, Breidenbaugh Hall 201. Praised as “historical story-telling at its best,” Bell’s book provides a searing microhistory of five boys’ experience with the “reverse Underground Railroad,” the black market network that lined the pockets of its architects – and helped fuel slavery’s expansion – through stealing free people of color from their homes and families and selling them into bondage. Bell’s lecture will use the story of five young men kidnapped from Philadelphia in 1825 who managed to escape, return home and lead a manhunt to bring their former captors to justice to illustrate the dark corners of a system that ensured that no person of color could ever be truly free from the specter of enslavement. Bell received his Ph.D. from Harvard University and his B.A. from the University of Cambridge. He is Associate Professor of History at the University of Maryland.