Sojourner Truth

On March 31, 1776, Abigail Adams wrote one of many letters to her husband.  In this particular letter, she writes, “I long to hear that you have declared an independency. And, by the way, in the new code of laws which I suppose it will be necessary for you to make, I desire you would remember the ladies and be more generous and favorable to them than your ancestors. Do not put such unlimited power into the hands of the husbands. Remember, all men would be tyrants if they could. If particular care and attention are not paid to the ladies, we are determined to foment a rebellion, and will not hold ourselves bound by any laws in which we have no voice or representation.”

Quite the modern thought!  The idea that women should have representation in government as well.  This passage did get me thinking that I should have a Remember the Ladies Series.  This series will focus on American women who have helped shaped history

When I left the house of bondage I left everything behind. I wasn’t going to keep nothing of Egypt on me, an’ so I went to the Lord an’ asked him to give me a new name. And he gave me Sojourner because I was to travel up and down the land showing the people their sins and bein’ a sign unto them. I told the Lord I wanted two names ’cause everybody else had two, and the Lord gave me Truth, because I was to declare the truth to the people.

Sojourner Truth

Sojourner Truth was born a slave in 1797 in New York.  She was owned by a Dutchman and was able to escape with her small daughter in 1826.  She changed her name in 1843 and became known as a traveling preacher.  She did not know how to read or write but for over forty years she gave powerful intelligent speeches on the abolition of slavery, women’s rights, the rights for free African Americans, injustice, the illegalization of alcohol, prison reform, and getting rid of the death sentence.

She knew and befriended many men and women who supported abolition and women’s rights including William Lloyd Garrison, Lucretia Mott, Susan B. Anthony, and Harriet Beecher Stowe.

Afer the slaves were freed, Sojourner Truth worked for the Freedman’s Bureau trying to better slave’s lives and their living conditions.

Sojourner Truth died on November 26, 1883.


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