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Solomon Northup: The Complete Story of the Author of Twelve Years a Slave 1st Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1440829741
ISBN-10: 1440829748
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Fiske, Brown, and Seligman's Solomon Northup is the best current biography available. The facts they have uncovered are invaluable--the living descendants they have identified, precious."--Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Alphonse Fletcher University Professor at Harvard University and Director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research

"Historians have found much useful information in Solomon Northup's memoir with its insights into the traumatic life of a free man kidnapped into slavery. The authors of this volume present an extensive and fascinating examination of Northup's life particularly after he escaped, filling in the many gaps in his own telling. Their work will be of great interest to historians who study the experience of African Americans before emancipation."--Joel H. Silbey, Professor of American History Emeritus, Cornell University

"What a triumph of research! What a contribution to regional history and the oft-neglected genre of slave narratives! The authors have done a stunning job of combing a wide variety of regional primary sources. More importantly, they have provided a thoroughly documented back story on a genuine American hero; his triumph over slavery and discrimination; and one of the most famous books of the 1850s. The research evident in this book is nearly as incredible as Solomon Northup's own ordeal."--Preston E. Pierce, Adjunct Lecturer in History, Finger Lakes Community College


Accessible to both general readers and scholars, this history offers a detailed account of the life of Solomon Northrup, a literate, free-born black in upstate New York who was kidnapped and sold into slavery in 1841 at age 33; he later wrote a book about his experiences, called Twelve Years a Slave. This account describes Northrup's life before, during, and after slavery, encompassing his travels, writing, public lectures, and his work with the Underground Railroad. Appendices offer a family tree and a publishing history of Twelve Years a Slave. - Book News, Inc., Portland, OR.


"The best available text on Northup's life and obscure death..." Heidi Kim, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (in Los Angeles Review of Books)

"The best available text on Northup's life and obscure death is Solomon Northup: The Complete Story of the Author of Twelve Years a Slave." - Los Angeles Review of Books

"Useful for anyone looking deeply into background information on Solomon Northup. Summing Up: Recommended." - Choice

"An assiduously footnoted companion to the original autobiography." - Mark Robichaux for The Wall Street Journal

Review

"Fiske, Brown, and Seligman's Solomon Northup is the best current biography available. The facts they have uncovered are invaluable―the living descendants they have identified, precious." (Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Alphonse Fletcher University Professor at Harvard University and Director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research)

"This informative and meticulously researched manuscript serves as a companion to Northup's influential account of kidnapping from upstate New York and subsequent slavery in pre-Civil War Louisiana. The authors provide extensive detail about Northup's life and times, placing his experiences in specific historical context and offering valuable commentary on the tale Northup so compellingly tells." (Kenneth Klotz, Retired Administrator, Skidmore College, and Former Mayor, Saratoga Springs, New York)

"What a triumph of research! What a contribution to regional history and the oft-neglected genre of slave narratives! The authors have done a stunning job of combing a wide variety of regional primary sources. More importantly, they have provided a thoroughly documented back story on a genuine American hero; his triumph over slavery and discrimination; and one of the most famous books of the 1850s. The research evident in this book is nearly as incredible as Solomon Northup's own ordeal." (Preston E. Pierce, Regional Archivist, Rochester Regional Library Council, Adjunct Lecturer in History, Finger Lakes Community College)

"Historians have found much useful information in Solomon Northup's memoir with its insights into the traumatic life of a free man kidnapped into slavery. The authors of this volume present an extensive and fascinating examination of Northup's life particularly after he escaped, filling in the many gaps in his own telling. Their work will be of great interest to historians who study the experience of African Americans before emancipation." (Joel H. Silbey, Professor of American History Emeritus, Cornell University)

"Solomon Northup's life and memoir are amongst the most important documentary evidence in the history of slavery in the United States. History has treated Northup unfairly, much as he was treated in life. He was born a free African American citizen of New York State but kidnapped in 1841 and transported south where he disappeared into enslavement in Louisiana. After regaining freedom in 1853, Northup campaigned against slavery and was a conductor on the Underground Railroad, only to disappear from the historical record during the Civil War. Northup's memoir and life were rediscovered in the 1960s but have been neglected by historians and teachers for decades, only to be rediscovered again and retold in this excellent account." (Alan Singer, Director, Secondary Education Social Studies Department of Teaching, Literacy and Leadership, Hofstra University)
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 225 pages
  • Publisher: Praeger; 1 edition (August 12, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1440829748
  • ISBN-13: 978-1440829741
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6.2 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,359,088 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is the most thoroughly researched and well-balanced examination of Solomon Northup's incredible life that exists. Clearly, it was a long time in the making, and the combined authors bring formidable research, organization, and writing skills to this work. As a bonus the book contains some very interesting and intriguing illustrations, the majority of which are unknown to slave historians. Long after the film of 12 Years a Slave is forgotten, this book will still be the real reference for all the historical details surrounding Solomon's capture, difficult time as a slave, and his life after being rescued.
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Format: Hardcover
I was prompted to read this autobiography by the movie trailer for the theatrical production being released in October. I did not have extreme expectations and I figured the book would be written as a history lesson, but I was still intrigued by what the book might contain, so I decided to order it and read it. My expectations were far exceeded. The author provides a raw, realistic, factual view of his experience. I found myself unable to put this book down. It is rare that a non-fiction depiction of slavery is provided for readers, and this book provides a great vantage point into the life of slaves during this era in the set region of the country. Some of the details become repetitive as the author recounts various stories and ties multiple incidents together, but this did not put a damper on the book for me. I think this book is a must read. You will not be disappointed.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is book examines the narrative of Solomon Northup and builds upon the research and lifelong work of Dr. Sue Eakin. Dr. Eakin discovered Solomon's narrative as a girl became fascinated with Solomon's story. She spent her academic career researching Solomon's life and a version of his narrative was published that included her research Twelve Years a Slave - Enhanced Edition by Dr. Sue Eakin Based on a Lifetime Project. New Info, Images, Maps. If you don't yet own Twelve Years a Slave I suggest purchasing this Enhanced Edition.

This book is part biography because it examines Solomon Northup's narrative historically and chronicles his life before and after he was rescued.

The more ambitious aspect of this work is how they use the information they have to uncover the why of Solomon's survival. At the end of Twelve Years a Slave I felt as if I met and got to know a little about Solomon Northup. But a the end of this book I had 1)a greater understanding of the time, 2) Solomon's personality traits and 3) the qualities it took to successfully navigate the system of slavery as an outsider.

This also explores the mystery surrounding what ultimately became of Solomon Northup.

It is a great scholarly "sequel" to Twelve Years A Slave. This book covers Solomon's narrative well enough that it does not have to be read after the narrative and most importantly it explores the character of Solomon Northup in detail and identifies then examines why he was able to survive slavery.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I found book to be a Perfect that extends the book " Twelve Years A Slave" that I also purchase from Amazon! Also, I had pre-ordered the Blu Ray too! The books are better than the movie because they include much more detail. Highly Recommend that you read and watch all three of them!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
after seeing the movie I bought the book and I cannot believe people could treat other people like that with freedom or without freedom. I just can't begin to imagine
and the ending of the movie was very touching
he was truly a survivor
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Interesting and engaging if a little speculative toward the end, this book makes a good companion to the original work as well as the film. The writers have done a good amount of research on Northrup and the circumstances of his life. It's well written and keeps your attention.
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Format: Kindle Edition
A tragic story of a man who lost a big chunk of his life because of two greedy scoundrels who finally get their comupance. From a historical point of view, it fills out some history details that I had not been exposed to in the past.
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Although it is a part of history & very informative I found it a slow read. It is good background which filled in gaps when I saw the film.
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