19th century, abolitionists, antislavery movements, biographies, Ellen Craft, England, fugitive slaves, Georgia, racially mixed women, slaves, United States, William Craft
This book presents the remarkable true story of Ellen and William Craft, who escaped slavery through daring, determination, and disguise, with Ellen passing as a wealthy, disabled white man and William posing as “his” slave.
“Master Slave Husband Wife, like all of the truly great American stories, spent over a century lying in wait, desperate to be told. Enter Ilyon Woo. Ellen and WIlliam Craft loved each other, but also loved freedom, and knew one was impossible without the other. And so they embarked on one of the most daring feats ever attempted in American history, a breathless story captured with breathless prose, and we readers gasp in amazement and wonder at the tragedy and triumph.” — Marlon James, winner of the 2015 Booker Prize
“A gripping adventure. . . . suspenseful and wonderfully told. A captivating tale that ably captures the determination and courage of a remarkable couple.” ― Kirkus Reviews (starred review
“For those of us who already were familiar with Ellen and William Craft, we’re so grateful for this reconsideration of this courageous couple’s story. Ilyon Woo has accomplished a phenomenal feat, presenting previously unpublished archival excavations. Certainly, this is an essential addition to early African American studies—but more than research, Woo offers the Crafts’ travels with such grace, such tenderness. Here is a necessary rendering of Black love, Black resilience, and Black humanity during one of our nation’s most fraught times.” — Honorée Fanonne Jeffers, author of The Love Songs of W.E.B. Du Bois)
“A narrative of such courage and resourcefulness it seems too dashing to be true. But it is. . . . The story is so richly dramatic, and Ms. Woo so skilled at spinning it out, that at times it’s a genuine nail-biter.” — Priscilla M. Jensen ― The Wall Street Journal