State of Missouri vs. Celia, A Slave: Trial Record, Selected Links & Bibliography
by Kathleen Hall

Celia File No. 4496

Records of Callaway Circuit Court from the proceedings in the matter of Missouri vs. Celia, a Slave.

Index to Records of Callaway Circuit Court proceedings in the matter of Missouri vs. Celia, a Slave.

Internet Resources

Great American Trials, Vol. I

Describes the events leading up to the crime for which Celia was charged, the trial, appeal and execution.

Missouri vs. Celia

A PBS publication that identifies the parties, the claims, summarizes witness testimony, and includes the jury instructions, verdict, and text of governing Missouri statutes.

“Hanging a Negress,” The New York Times, 16 January 1856 (reprinted from The Fulton Missouri, 4 January 1856).

Slavery in Missouri and Little Dixie (series of maps showing extent of slave ownership by county)


Diane Mutti Burke, On Slavery's Border: Missouri's Small-Slaveholding Households, 1815-1865 (Univ. of Georgia Press, 2010).

Steven Lubet, Fugitive Justice: Runaways, Rescuers, and Slavery on Trial (Belknap Press of Harvard Univ., 2010).

Melton A. McLaurin, Celia, a Slave: A True Story (N.Y.: HarperCollins Publishers, 1999).

Harriet C. Frazier, Slavery and Crime in Missouri, 1773-1865 (Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers, 2001), 184-194.

Famous Trials Website