Sojourner Truth's powerful voice calls to us through this evocative narrative of faith in action--and her words are more relevant than ever.
Though born into slavery, Sojourner Truth would defy the limits placed upon her as a Black woman to become one of the nineteenth century's most renowned female preachers and civil rights advocates. In this new biography, Nancy Koester chronicles Truth's spiritual journey as an enslaved woman, a working mother, and an itinerant preacher and activist.
Koester unflinchingly narrates Sojourner Truth's early life, including her experiences of familial separation, physical abuse, and other traumas that defined the institution of slavery. Even after successfully freeing herself and her newborn daughter, she contemplated returning to her previous master, where her other children were living. But on Pentecost in 1827, the course of her life was changed forever when she had a vision of Jesus, who called her to preach. Though women could not be trained as ministers at the time, her persuasive speaking, powerful singing, and quick wit converted many to her social causes. During the Civil War, Truth campaigned for the Union to abolish slavery throughout the United States, and she personally recruited Black troops for the effort. Her activism carried her to Washington, DC, where she met Abraham Lincoln and ministered to refugees of Southern slavery. Truth's faith-driven action continued throughout Reconstruction, as she aided freed people, campaigned for reparations, advocated for women's rights, and defied segregation on public transportation.
Sojourner Truth's powerful voice once echoed in the streets of Washington and New York. Her passion rings out again in Nancy Koester's vivid writing. As the legacy of slavery and segregation still looms over the United States today, Christian readers, students of American history, and all interested readers will find inspiration and illumination in Truth's story.