Black History Month: Elizabeth Freeman

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Elizabeth Freeman, also known as MumBet was the first enslaved Black person to file and win their freedom in a lawsuit in Massachusets.

Freeman’s lawsuit, Brom and Bett v Ashley (1781), resulted in a Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruling ruling slavery unconstitutional. The court further cited her suit in a review of a similar lawsuit by Quock Walker, implicitly ending slavery in Massachusetts.

Freeman’s lawsuit resulted in her freedom, damages to the tune of 30 shillings (approximately $350 today).

Published by Aila Moireach

Aila is a 30 year old single mum and social justice educator and writer. You can find her on facebook, or on her blog http://ailamoireach.com