Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Kidnapped Slave: Solomon Northup

Solomon Northup is the subject of a recent feature movie based on his book “Twelve Years a Slave.”  This information is from the book "Bound for the North Star by Dennis Brindell Fradin.  Northup was born a free man, however he was lured south with the prospects of employment.  He played the violin, and two men asked him to join the circus.  However there was no circus.  They put drugs in his drink, knocking him out.  When he woke he was chained with a group of other African American men.  He became part of those kidnapped persons sole into slavery.  James Birch was a slave dealer of ill repute, and his friends had sold him to them.  He insisted he was free.  However the slave dealer gave him a new name, Platt, and beat him mercilessly because he insisted he was a free man.  He peat him first with a paddle, and then with a whip. 
He was sold into slavery and boarded on a ship for parts self.  He thought about escape the opportunity didn’t come.  He was sold to a plantation owner named Ford, but also became partly owned by Tibaut to whom Ford owed a debt.  Tibaut was not kind.  He would often pick a fight.  One time he went to whip Solomon, but Solomon took the whip away and pushed Tibaut down.  He returned with two men with the goal of hanging the Solomon.  However Ford came upon the scene, and Rescued Solomon and his investment. 
He was later sold to a man Epps, where he worked for ten years.  He tried to send a letter home, but as he could not send it directly asked someone else, and was betrayed.  A man, Samuel Bass came to work on the plantation.  Bass was not fond of slavery.  Solomon tried to take another chance, and confided in Bass that he was not a slave.  Through this, Bass was able to get word to his family after verifying the story.  A lawyer came to rescue Soloman from his horrendous twelve years. 
After he was rescued, those who contributed to his time in slavery were arrested, but none of them were ever convicted.

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