Mainers, like residents of other states, had differing views about slavery and abolition in the early to mid decades of the 19th century. Religion and economic factors were among the considerations in determining people's leanings.
Reuben Ruby of Portland operated a hack in the city, using his work to earn a living and to help carry out his activist interests, especially abolition and the Underground Railroad.
Throughout the history of the state, residents have protested, on paper or in the streets, to increase rights for various groups, to effect social change, to prevent social change, or to let their feelings be known about important issues.
The first president of the Bangor Anti-Slavery Society was John Godfrey. During the 1800's a fair number of African Americans made Bangor their home.