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Born: ca. 1797 - Ulster County, NY
Died: November 26, 1883 - Battle Creek, MI

Excerpt from Narrative of Sojourner Truth

Hhere was snow on the ground, at the time of which we are speaking; and a large old-fashioned sleigh was seen to drive up to the door of the late Col. Ardinburgh. This event was noticed with childish pleasure by the unsuspicious boy; but when he was taken and put into the sleigh, and saw his little sister actually shut and locked into the sleigh box, his eyes were at once opened to their intentions; and, like a frightened deer he sprang from the sleigh, and running into the house, concealed himself under a bed. But this availed him little. He was re-conveyed to the sleigh, and separated for ever from those whom God had constituted his natural guardians and protectors

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Teaching Topics in Social Studies
Sojourner Truth's life, spanning almost the entire 19th century, offers a look at AFRICAN-AMERICAN HISTORY:
the conditions of SLAVERY, the trials of an ESCAPE TO FREEDOM, and an ongoing fight for CIVIL RIGHTS. Her careers as a RELIGIOUS preacher and speaker on ABOLITION and SUFFRAGE offer insight into particular SOCIAL MOVEMENTS of the time in which she lived.

Teaching Topics in Language Arts
The Narrative of Sojourner Truth could be considered both a BIOGRAPHY and a NARRATIVE. It has a POINT OF VIEW and PERSUASIVE TONE. Her speeches can be used in a study of ORATORY and DIALECT.

Scavenger Hunt
What phrase is inscribed on Sojourner Truth's tombstone?
. . . answer . . .

Facts About Sojourner Truth and Narative of Sojourner Truth
  • Sojourner Truth never learned to read or write.
  • The narrative is a partial autobiography, as told to Olive Gilbert in the 1840's.
  • Sojourner Truth was born into slavery in a Dutch area of New York state; she spoke only Dutch until she was ten or eleven when she learned English quickly after being sold and moving to an English-speaking region.
  • It is one of the earliest accounts that describe the life of a female slave.
  • She supported herself through speaking tours and sales of the book.

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