Documenting the American South Logo
Collections >> North American Slave Narratives >> Document Menu >> Summary

Leonard Black
The Life and Sufferings of Leonard Black, a Fugitive from Slavery. Written by Himself
New Bedford: Benjamin Lindsey, 1847.


Leonard Black was born sometime before 1820 in Maryland and lived as a slave for over twenty years. In his narrative, The Life and Sufferings of Leonard Black, A Fugitive From Slavery (1847), Black writes of cruel masters and the many trials he endured. He converted to Christianity in 1836 and decided to enter the ministry. Shortly thereafter, he ran away, following his three brothers to Boston, Massachusetts and later Portland, Maine in 1837. He returned to Boston, where he lived for several years before moving to Providence, Rhode Island with his wife. Black closes his narrative with an essay on slavery and a short poem. Black hoped that revenue produced from this short sketch of his life would provide funds for the furthering of his education, better equipping him for the ministry.

Monique Prince

Document menu