Opening Sentence, 12 YEARS A SLAVE

“Having been born a freeman, and for more than 30 yrs enjoyed the blessings of liberty in a free State — and having at the end of that time been kidnapped and sold into slavery, where I remained, until happily rescued in the month of January 1853, after a bondage of twelve years — it has been suggested that an account of my life and fortunes would not be uninteresting to the public.”

12 Years a Slave, by Solomon Northup (first published 1853)

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