Josiah Henson

Runaway Slave And Author

Slavery in America

Slavery first started in 1619 in the North American colony in Jamestown, Virginia. Slavery is what Americans ran on. Slaves provided a great amount of work and picking cotton, sugarcane, tobacco, working on rice plantations, working in slave kitchens, blacksmith. Slavery was a process in the American colonies in the 17th and 18th centuries. A huge, helpful part of picking cotton came the cotton gin was founded in 1793. The cotton gin helped out the South's economic system. Then there came the Civil War in the mid-19th century. Westward enlargement was a growing abolition movement in the North, which would split the nation apart over slavery in the bloody American Civil War.

Josiah Henson was born in June 15th, 1789 in Charles County, Maryland.

Josiah was born a slave. He was sold three times before he reached the age of eighteen. Him, his wife and three children escaped and reached Canada in 1830. While he was over there he was able to form a community to teach ex-slaves to be successful and sufficient farmers.
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First job

In 1849, Josiah's tasks were to carry buckets of water to the working men out in the fields, or anywhere. Also he was to hold a horse-plough, used for weeding between the rows of corn. But, as Josiah grew older and taller he was entrusted with his masters saddle-horse. Soon after he was put to work with a hoe. He was to do the daily man's hard work.
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Harriet Beecher Stowe wanted to make a change about slavery. So one day she decided to write a novel about slavery with the main character, Josiah Henson-an escaped slave. They decided to print 5,000 copies of the book "Uncle Tom's Cabin" and it was the fastest selling book in 1851. "In the preface Stowe wrote: "The object of these sketches is to awaken sympathy and feeling for the African race, as they exist among us; to show their wrongs and sorrows, under a system so necessarily cruel and unjust as to defeat and do away with the good effects of all that can be attempted for them by their best friends."

Connection to the bill of Rights

Josiah was connected to the ninth amendment because he was a runaway slave and he couldn't have the normal rights as a normal human being. So the law wasn't giving him his own space.
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Josiah resisted his enslavement

Josiah wrote an autobiography with Harriet Beecher Stowe. Called "Uncle Tom's Cabin"

What happened to Josiah?

Josiah, his wife and four children stayed in Canada to help ex-slaved people to become successful farmer and croppers. He tried to buy his freedom but he cheated with his money and just ran away.


Simkin, John. "Spartacus Educational." Spartacus Educational. Spartacus Educational "Slavery in the USA", Nov. 2014. Web. 19 Feb. 2015. "Slavery in America." A&E Television Networks, Feb. 2009. Web. 11 Feb. 2015.