Solomon Northup

Solomon  Northup

Solomon Northup was born a free man in Minerva, Essex County, New York in July 1808.

His father, Mintus Northup, was a freed slave, who took his surname from the family he had served. Mintus's master, Captain Henry Northup, granted Mintus his freedom in his will. After the death of Captain Northup, Mintus, as well as becoming a free man, also managed, later on, to gain the vote by virtue of meeting New York State's property requirements, an impressive feat for someone coming from such a humble background. Mintus died in 1829.

Solomon's mother - unnamed in the book - was a woman of mixed ancestry. There are only sketchy details about her in Solomon's memoir, but it is mentioned that she died while Solomon was held as a slave in the Deep South. Solomon described his mother as a quadroon, meaning she was one quarter black and three-quarters white.

In 1829, Solomon married Anne Hampton, a woman of African, European and Native American heritage, and together they had three Read More chevron_right