Nelson Mandela was born on July 18, 1918 in South Africa. He grew up in a village and he and his father cared for cattle. Nelson would do his chores, when he was finished he would play soccer and hunt. He loved listening to his family talk about the history of Africa
Nelson's prison cell
When Nelson's father passed away he lived with a tribal chief. He wanted Nelson to have a good education. He went to a church school. He was always good in school and worked hard. Nelson studied law.
In 1912 a union called the African National Congress, or ANC, was formed. The ANC wanted to end apartheid. Nelson joined the ANC in 1944 and then became the leader. They led peaceful protests. Nelson went out at night and in disguises. The ANC and Nelson were very determined to make a change and stop apartheid.
In 1964 he was setenced to life in jail for sabotage. He was sent to Robben Island. He had bad food, showered in cold wate, and had to work in a limestone quarry in the freezing cold and hot weather. Nelson wanted to make good use of his time in prison. He exercised and studied law. In 1975, he started to write an autobiography. He wrote it to help South Africans, ANC members,and apartheid activists.