First published in 1853, Twelve Years a Slave is the narrative of Solomon Northupâ€™s experience as a freeman sold into slavery, having spent twelve years in bondage before finally escaping. Northupâ€™s memoir reveals unimaginable details, detailing the slave markets and horrors of life on a plantation from the perspective of a man who lived more than thirty years as a free person before being forcibly enslaved.
Written in the year after Northup was freed and published in the wake of Harriet Beecher Stoweâ€™s Uncle Tomâ€™s Cabin, Northupâ€™s story was quickly taken up by abolitionist groups and news organizations as part of the fight against slavery.
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