5,000 Miles to Freedom: Ellen and William Craft's Flight from Slavery

by Judith Bloom Fradin and Dennis Brindell Fradin

When Ellen and William Craft decided to escape from slavery in 1848, they had a daring... read more

When Ellen and William Craft decided to escape from slavery in 1848, they had a daring and unusual plan. Ellen, who was light skinned, posed as a sickly young southern gentleman of means. William played the role of the young man’s slave, accompanying him on a journey to Philadelphia. Judith and Dennis Fradin’s history of the Crafts begins with their tense and dramatic flight to freedom and goes on to tell of their work as abolitionists and activists in the ensuing years. Facing potential capture and the possible return to slavery after passage of the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850, they eventually emigrated to England, where they continued to speak out against slavery while working at a boarding school and raising their family. They returned to the United States after the Civil War and started a school in the south for former slaves. Archival newspaper articles, photographs, and other visual matter accompany a fascinating volume that concludes with a heartening afterword documenting contemporary children who are descendants of the Crafts. (Ages 11–14)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2007

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