Author Archives: 19zow

Elizabeth Freeman

Mum Bett

(Mum Bett )

Elizabeth Freeman born in 1742, to enslaved parents in Claverack, New York.  At only six months old she was purchased with her sister, by John Ashley of Sheffield, Massachusetts, where she served him until she was nearly forty years old. This woman broke the ground for the abolishment of slavery in the state of Massachusetts. It all started with a heated argument between her sister and the mistress of her slave house, Elizabeth intervened and stepped in front of a strike from a heated kitchen shovel. This led her to to call on to Theodore Sedgewick ,a Stockbridge lawyer to help her sue for her freedom. Brom & Bett v. Ashely was argued in front of a county court. The jury ruled in favor of Brom & Brett making them the first enslaved Africans to be freed under Massachusetts constitution of 1780.