During the Civil War Draft Riots, a wave of violence and destruction of property in response to the military draft, the UAME Church of Stapleton became the focus of the mob. On the other side of Stapleton, the pastor, Rev. T. Skinner, and congregation of the First Presbyterian Church stepped up to give aid to those affected and fleeing the violence.
Afterwards Thomas W. Cardozo wrote a letter on behalf of the UAME Church and neighboring African American community specifically thanking the Rev. Skinner, "that generous hearted philanthropist...who came around to our residences, inquiring after our necessities," and his helpers for saving the UAME Church from flames and assisting the community. (See letter below).