|In the eleventh year of my age, my master sent me to another farm, several miles from my parents, brothers, and sisters, which was a great trouble to me. At last I grew so lonely and sad I thought I should die, if I did not see my mother. I asked overseer if I might go, but being positively denied, I concluded to go without his knowledge. -from "Memoir of Old Elizabeth, a Coloured Woman"
Dramatic stories of courage and survival fill these firsthand narratives of slavery in America from the unique perspective of the women who suffered under it. Ringing with cries for justice and equality, these six stories comprise an important compendium of the black female literary tradition.
They include: · "The History of Mary Prince, a West Indian Slave" (1831) · "Memoir of Old Elizabeth, a Coloured Woman" (1863) · "The Story of Mattie J. Jackson" (1866) · "From the Darkness Cometh the Light or Struggles for Freedom" (c. 1891), by Dr. L.S. Thompson · "Freedom" (c. 1891), by Lucy A. Delaney · "A Slave Girl's Story" (1898), by Kate Drumgoold · "Memories of Childhood's Slavery Days" (1909), by Annie L. Burton Embodying, as Delaney poetically terms it, the "true, steadfast heart and noble soul" of African-American women, these heart-rending stories continue to enthrall readers today.