By 1820 more than 750,000 black women were forced to work as slaves.
Most toiled on plantations, but some worked long hours in cotton mills. A few dug canals or hauled carts in the mines.
In 1800 Nancy Prosser helped her husband, Gabriel, plan a large revolt of slaves near Richmond, Virginia, but some slave owners found out and stopped the uprising.
In the 1850s Sojourner Truth and other black women published “slave narratives,” telling of their experiences.
Mary Ann Shadd (later Cary) put out a manual encouraging slaves to flee to Canada and in 1853 became the first African American woman editor, of the Canadian paper Provincial Freeman.
Anti-slavery lecturer Frances Ellen Watkins (later Harper) spoke out for abolition in articles and moving poems, such as “The Slave Mother.”