Scott Korb

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The Harriet Jacobs Family Papers: 2 Vols

Although millions of African American women were held in bondage over the 250 years that slavery was legal in the United States, Harriet Jacobs (1813-97) is the only one known to have left papers testifying to her life. Her autobiography, Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, holds a central place in the canon of American literature as the most important slave narrative by an African American woman

Praise for The Harriet Jacobs Family Papers: 2 Vols

  • [A] masterwork. . . . The opening chronology and brief biographies of persons referenced in the documents are themselves gems. This model of documentary collecting and editing is required for every library serious about its collections on U.S. history, literature, blacks, women, or slavery.

    Library Journal

  • A trove of primary and annotated sources on southern slavery. . . . Reader friendly . . . and written in . . . an engaging fashion. 

    Multicultural Review

  • Everything a reader could wish for is here. . . . These volumes will be of greatest interest to graduate students and scholars and those seriously committed to African American and women's history. . . . Essential.


  • This vast array of sources, including diaries, letters, convention reports, newspapers, bills of sale, and wills, offers significant insight into many facets of nineteenth-century life. . . . Certainly this excellent collection . . . will enhance research on northern reform, gender relations, race relations, and slavery. . . . Yellin and her team deserve our gratitude for making available and contextualizing this wealth of primary material.

    Journal of Southern History

  • The volumes are reader-friendly, accessible whether one goes to them for a particular document or a general reading. . . . An absolute gift to the field as well as a model for the sort of scholarship to which many of us aspire.