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Manual Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl Written by Herself ; with linked TOC (Illustrated)

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Reading this narrative by someone who lived the life of slavery and could so eloquently describe her truth to us Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl.


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Harriet Ann Jacobs. Reader be assured this narrative is no fiction. I am aware that some of my adventures may seem incredible; but they are, nevertheless, strictly true.

Retracing Slavery's Trail of Tears | History | Smithsonian

I have not exaggerated the wrongs inflicted by Slavery; on the contrary, my descriptions fall far short of the facts. I have concealed the names of places, and given persons fictitious names. I had no motive for secrecy on my own account, but I deemed it kind and considerate towards others to pursue this course. I wish I were more competent to the task I have undertaken. But I trust my readers will excuse deficiencies in consideration of circumstances.

I was born and reared in Slavery; and I remained in a Slave State twenty-seven years. Since I have been at the North, it has been necessary for me to work diligently for my own support, and the education of my children. An estimated two to three hundred African Americans, most of whom were not connected to the rebellion, were murdered by white mobs. The governor of Virginia tried to put a stop to this vigilante justice, insisting that those who had participated in the rebellion should be tried and executed by the state to reinforce the supremacy of the law for both blacks and whites.

In the aftermath of the rebellion, the state legislature of Virginia considered abolishing slavery, but instead voted to tighten the laws restricting blacks' freedom in hopes of preventing any further insurrection. Rumors spread that slaves in North Carolina were plotting their own uprising, and white mobs murdered a number of enslaved men, while other slaves were arrested, tried, and a few executed.

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North Carolina, like Virginia, passed new legislation further restricting the rights of both enslaved people and free blacks. The legislature made it illegal for slaves to preach, to be "insolent" to white people, to carry a gun, to hunt in the woods, to cohabitate with a free black or white person, to own any type of livestock.


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  8. These new codes also forbade white people from teaching an enslaved person to read. Skip to main content. Board of Education and School Desegregation Brown v. Bush: U. Reading Primary Sources: an introduction for students Appendix B. Wills and inventories: a process guide Appendix C.

    Retracing Slavery’s Trail of Tears

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    Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl (Illustrated + FREE audiobook download link)

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