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William Wells Brown

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .The Poplar Farm, as it was called, was situated in a beautiful valley, nine miles from Natchez, and near the Mississippi River. The once unshorn face of nature had given way, and the farm now blossomed with a splendid harvest. The neat cottage stood in a grove, where Lombardy poplars lift their tops almost to prop the skies, where the willow, locust, and horse-chestnut trees spread forth their branches, and flowers never ceased to blossom.

This was the parson's country residence, where the family spent only two months during the year. His town residence was a fine villa, seated on the brow of a hill, at the edge of the city.

It was in the kitchen of this house that Agnes found her new home. Mr. Wilson was every inch a democrat, and early resolved that "his people," as he called his slaves, should be well-fed and not over-worked, and therefore laid down the law and gospel to the overseer as well as to the slaves. "It is my wish," said he to Mr. Carlin. . . Read More

Community Reviews

"Clotel" is the story of a slave woman who was allegedly the daughter of Thomas Jefferson. At the time the book was published in 1853, rumors were rife about Jefferson's relationship with his slave, Sally Hemings. We now know, through DNA testing, that those rumors were true -- but the author could

It wasn’t really about a Clotel all that much.
The asides to the reader are an odd choice, but interesting and really good.

Of course the book is very different to what we are used to in books today. Apart from the style of writing the book deals with a topic we do not necessarily enjoy: slavery.
Brown tells the story of Clotel, the fictional daughter of a slave and Thomas Jefferson.
Brown presents an sad insight on the

How the actual hell have I never heard of this book before?

Clotel: or, the President's Daughter is a masterpiece of historical fiction that rings with historical truth. Based on facts and narratives that William Wells Brown collected on his own journey out of slavery, Clotel unashamedly looks many f

2021 Reread review:
This is really well done and truly should be required reading in place of Twain across the nation.
This includes a lot of true history that serves as a lesson on chattel slavery interspersed with the fictional tale of Clotel and her family.
The author really is able to succinctly po

There is something audacious and true about this book, however fictional. The first time I came to the sentence calling Clotel the daughter of Thomas Jefferson I felt the boldness of that sentence, and the truth of it, that it was known even in 1853 that Jefferson had children who were slaves. The n

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