Black History Month: 7 notable African American political activists who predate MLK Jr.

Sojourner Truth

American abolitionist Sojourner Truth (c. 1797-1883), as seen in an 1870 photo.
American abolitionist Sojourner Truth (c. 1797-1883), as seen in an 1870 photo. | Public Domain

Born into slavery with the name Isabella shortly after the U.S. Constitution was ratified, she took the name Sojourner Truth in 1843 and dedicated her life to preaching the Gospel and the abolition of slavery.

Truth also campaigned for women's rights, giving a famous speech titled "Ain't I A Woman" before the Women's Rights Convention in 1851.

Get Our Latest News for FREE

Subscribe to get daily/weekly email with the top stories (plus special offers!) from The Christian Post. Be the first to know.

"When the Civil War began, Truth threw her energy into soliciting food and clothing for the volunteer regiments of black Union soldiers," explains the Social Welfare History Project at Virginia Commonwealth University.

"Then the plight of freed slaves caught her attention, many of whom were living in refugee camps in the nation's capital. She championed the idea of a colony for freed slaves in the American West where they would have a chance to become self-supporting and self-reliant."

Truth helped black refugees settle in the Midwest following the end of Reconstruction, dying a few years later in Battle Creek, Michigan, in 1883 at the age of 92.

Follow Michael Gryboski on Twitter or Facebook

Was this article helpful?

Help keep The Christian Post free for everyone.

By making a recurring donation or a one-time donation of any amount, you're helping to keep CP's articles free and accessible for everyone.

We’re sorry to hear that.

Hope you’ll give us another try and check out some other articles. Return to homepage.