Sojourner Truth traveled the country in the latter half of the 19th century, speaking out against slavery. She told of a slave girl who was sold three times by age 13, who was beaten for not understanding her master's orders, who watched her parents die of cold and hunger when they could no longer work for their keep. Sojourner's simple yet powerful words helped people to understand the hideous truth about slavery. The story she told was her own.
Only Passing Through is the inspiring story of how a woman, born a slave with no status or dignity, transformed herself into one of the most powerful voices of the abolitionist movement.
Discover more about this heroic figure in A Mighty Girl's Sojourner Truth Collection.
Born in 1797, and sold three times by the time she was 13 (and beaten many more times), a tall young slave girl named Isabella grew in her determination to fight the evils of slavery and speak for human rights. At the age of 46, having been a free woman for 17 years, Isabella woke from a dream telling her she must travel the country, conveying to people what it meant to be a slave. On that day, Isabella renamed herself.
"It was as though the life she'd known up till then belonged to someone else. A new one was beginning. The old life had become a tale to tell, a story to bring freedom to others. Her old name belonged to her old life. From that day on, she was never called Isabella again. Her name was Sojourner Truth."
Anne Rockwell's picture-book biography of the legendary and powerful messenger of civil rights rings with authority and dignity, matched by Gregory Christie's full-page impressionistic paintings featuring Truth's symbolically outsized head and hands, and striking perspectives of both slaves and slave owners. Awash with rich color, Christie's images will linger long with readers, as will Rockwell's description of Sojourner Truth singing in the face of enraged, drunken antiabolitionists. The author includes a historical note and a 19th century timeline for further context. -- Emilie Coulter
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