12 Years A Slave is a movie set to hit theaters this month. The movie is based on the true life story of Solomon Northup. Northup was a free black man living in the north until one day he was tricked, captured, and eventually sold to a plantation owner in the Deep South. Northup would live as a slave for 12 years and would eventually record his experiences in his memoir 12 Years a Slave. This movie is already being regarded as one of the top selling movies of the year and the many actors in the film have been given future Oscar nods.
Here at Special Collections we house multiple slave narratives, including Northup’s memoir. For those interested in seeing this amazing movie, you should come by our department and see these narratives. Most of the narratives we collect are written from the first hand experiences of freed slaves. These stories illuminate a regretful part of America’s history. Our department believes it is important to collect this portion of history so that future generations can learn from the past to change the future.
So before you hit the theaters take a little time to visit Special Collections, located on the 5th floor of McFarlin library. While here you can learn a little more about the slave trade, America’s past, and the experiences that these brave souls endured.
The Department of Special Collections and University Archives is open Monday-Friday 8 am to 5 pm.