Elizabeth Freeman #WHM22 #WomensHistoryMonth #WomenInSTEM

Today we honor Elizabeth Freeman, who fought for her freedom from enslavement in Massachusetts and won in a landmark case. Read more about her inspiring life and how history is finally turning its eyes to her story, from Atlas Obscura.

Among the enslaved laborers who made New England what it is were Freeman and a man named Brom, whom she recruited to join her petition for freedom. They filed their suit, Brom & Bett v. John Ashley, Esq. in spring 1781. After Ashley refused a writ of replevin—a court order for the return of unlawfully held property—he was forced to appear before the Court of Common Pleas on August 21, 1781. Sedgwick’s argument for the plaintiffs rested on the assertion that the newly ratified Massachusetts Constitution had effectively outlawed slavery with the words, “All men are born free and equal, and have certain natural, essential, and unalienable rights…” The court agreed, ordering that Ashley release Freeman and Brom and pay them 30 shillings each in damages, plus court costs.

Read more.


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