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The ante-bellum period was an age of racism and an age of suffering The author of the account entitled A Narrative was William Wells Brown Brown was one of seven children however no two of them were of the same father Browns mother was a woman by the name of Elizabeth and his father was a Mr George Higgins a white relative of Browns first owner William Wells Brown was born in Lexington Kentucky While his birth date was unbeknownst to him the event was recorded in his masters records Mr Browns narrative starts in St Charles Missouri the tale soon expands to St Louis Missouri New Orleans Louisiana and the general Mississippi River Valley Through out his journeys Brown is treated both fairly and poorly given responsibility and not trusted and always a slave During the story Brown tells of other slaves stories and fates living out his life through the lives of others While a babe Brown was carried on his mothers back through the fields and soon was made a house servant in the plantation house While his first master was not at home much of his childhood Brown describes his Northern overseer The man is stereotyped as like most Northerner slave overseers being meaner than the Southerners that held that same position William Wells Brown does not fall under the average ante-bellum slave characterizations While most black slaves were uneducated and illiterate Browns writing is both eloquent and well structured He held an assortment of jobs and positions throughout his life and except in a few circumstances did not work in the fields of a plantation Brown was not rebellious nor a troublemaker he attempted an escape on one occasion but the consequences cautioned him from making another attempt until much later in life Brown does however fit the distillation of an ante-bellum slave in several ways He dreams of being free toils during the day in the burning sun and
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