Introduction Sojourner Truth was born in 1797, in Hurley N.Y.Sojourner was born into slavery, and was given the name Isabella Baumfree.Sojourner’s parents, were also slaves, in Ulster county N.Y.Because slave trading was very prominent in those days, Sojourner was traded and sold many times throughout her life.Sojourner ran away from slavery before the Emancipation act was published, and decided to change her name to Sojourner Truth.
This name bares great meaning, because she intended on telling the truth to all people about slavery. Sojourner also wanted a religious name, and she felt that this name would best suit her purpose.Sojourner set out on her mission, to educate all people on the subject of slavery, and became a very powerful speaker.She became an influential speaker for women’s rights, as well for the abolishment of slavery all over the country. She became famous for being the first black women to speak out against slavery.Sojourner died at her home in Battle Creek, Michigan on November 26, 1883.She left behind a legacy of ideas and principles for other great black leader to follow.
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She will always be remembered for her courage, perseverance, diligence, and patience.Her Birth And ParentageSojourner Truth, originally named, Isabella Baumfree, was born,between the years 1797.She was the daughter of James and Betsey, slaves of one Colonel Ardinburgh, Hurley, Ulster County, New York. Colonel Ardinburgh belonged to that class of people called Low Dutch. Sojourner can give no account to her first master, because she was a young infant when he died.Sojourner and her parents, along with a number of other slaves, became the property of Charles Ardinburgh, son of the deceased master. She distinctly remembers hearing her father and mother say, that their lot was a fortunate one, because their new master, Charles, was the best of the family, because he was very kind to his slaves. James and Betsey, by their faithfulness, docility, and respectful behavior, gained favoritism, and received a lot of land.
This land lay on the slope of a mountain, on which they managed to raise a little tobacco, corn, or flax, which they exchanged for extras, in the articles of food or clothing for themselves and children.Who was Sojourner Truth?Sojourner Truth came to Northampton in 1843 to live at the Northampton Association of Education and Industry, a utopian community in Florence. She was born a slave in upstate New York in approximately 1797, she labored for a succession of five masters until the Fourth of July, 1827, when slavery was finally abolished in New York State. Then Sojourner Truth, became legally free. After prevailing in a courageous court action demanding the return of her youngest son Peter, who had been illegally sold away from her to a slave owner in Alabama, Sojouner moved to New York City. There she worked as a housekeeper and became strongly involved in religion. Sojourner Truth had always been very spiritual, and after being emancipated, she had a vision, which was to develop a relationship withGod in prayer.
After fifteen years in New York, Sojourner Truth felt a call to become a preacher. After she took her new name (Sojourner Truth), and with a little more than the clothes on her back, she set out on her journey walking through Long Island and Connecticut, speaking to people in the countryside about her life and her relationship with God. She was a powerful speaker and singer. When she rose to speak, wrote one observer, “her commanding figure and dignified manner hushed every trifler to silence.” Audiences were “melted into tears by her touching stories.
” After several months of traveling, Truth was encouraged by friends to go to the Northampton Association, which had been founded in 1841 as a cooperative community dedicated to abolitionism, pacifism, equality and the betterment of human life. There, she met progressive thinkers like William Lloyd Garrison, Frederick Douglass and David Ruggles, and the local abolitionists Samuel Hill, George Benson and Olive Gilbert. Douglass described her at the time as “a strange compound of wit and wisdom, of wild enthusiasm and flintlike common sense.
” When the association disbanded in 1846, Truth remained in Northampton, moving for the first time into her own home, on Park Street in Florence, with a loan from Samuel Hill. Although Truth never learned to read or write, she dictated her memoirs to Olive Gilbert and they were published in 1850 as The Narrative of Sojourner Truth: A Northern Slave. This book, and her presence as a speaker, made her a sought-after figure on the anti-slavery woman’s rights lecture circuit..