SAT Subject US History Practice Question 48: Answer and Explanation
3. The Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 made it legal to do which of the following?
A. Prevent an African American from testifying in his or her own defense
B. Help a slave escape to a free state
C. Become a free person simply by crossing the border into a free state
D. Join the Free-Soil Party and speak out in favor of abolition
E. Execute any slave who was proved to have escaped from his or her owner
Correct Answer: A
The act specifically stated that African Americans accused of being escaped slaves could not testify before the commission hearing the case. People had every right to join the Free-Soil Party without reference to the Fugitive Slave Act. The U.S. government never passed a law that permitted the execution of escaped slaves. Choices B and C are the opposite of what the act required.