Sojourner Truth an African-American abolitionist and women's rights activist. Truth was born into slavery in Swartekill, Ulster County, New York, but escaped with her infant daughter to freedom in 1826. After going to court to recover her son, she became the first black woman to win such a case against a white man. Her best-known extemporaneous speech on gender inequalities
Truth was one of the ten or twelve children born to James and Elizabeth Baum free. He Baum free family was enslaved by Colonel Hardenberg. The Hardenberg estate was in a hilly area called by the Dutch name Swartekill (just north of present-day Rifton), in the town of Esopus, New York, 95 miles north of New York City. After the colonel's death, ownership of the family slaves passed to his son, Charles Hardenberg
After the death of Charles Hardenberg in 1806, Truth, known as Belle, was sold at an auction. She was about nine years old and was included with a flock of sheep for $100 to John Neely, near Kingston, New York. Until she was sold, Truth spoke only Dutch She suffered many hardships at the hands of Neely, whom she later described as cruel and harsh and who once beat her with a bundle of rods. Truth said neely beat her daily. Neely sold her in 1808, for $105, to Martinus Schryver of Port Ewen, a tavern keeper, who owned her for eighteen months. Schryver sold her in 1810, for $175, to John Dumont of West Park, New York. Although this fourth owner was kindly disposed toward her, his wife found numerous ways to harass Truth and make her life more difficult.
Around 1815, Truth met and fell in love with a slave named Robert from a neighboring farm. Robert's owner (Catlin) forbade the relationship; he did not want his slave to have children with a slave he did not own, because he would not own the children. Robert was savagely beaten and Truth never saw him again. Later, he died from the aforementioned injuries. In 1817, Truth was forced by Dumont