Henry Bibb was born in Shelby County, Kentucky in 10th May 1815. His father was state senator James Bibb. His mother, Mildred Jackson, a slave, worked on the plantation owned by Willard Gatewood and had seven children.
I am Henry Bibb and these two people on my side are my parents
Bibb had a strong desire for an education but this was not allowed in Shelby County. Bibb recalled, "Slaves were not allowed books, pen, ink, nor paper, to improve their minds.
Ha! Educated? Slaves aren't allowed to be educated now bend over for your whipping.
May I please be educated? I'll find a way to pay the costs I just need your approval
There was a Miss Davies, a poor white girl, who offered to teach a Sabbath School for the slaves. Books were supplied and she started the school; but the news got to our owners that she was teaching us to read. This caused quite an excitement in the neighbourhood. Patrols were appointed to go and break it up the next Sabbath."
Does anyone know the answer?
Bibb married in his late teens. After making several attempts to escape from his owner, he was finally successful in 1837. Six months later he returned and helped his family escape, but they were caught and sold to a plantation owner in Vicksburg, Mississippi. Once again the family attempted to escape but were captured after being attacked by wolves. Bibb was then sold to a group of Native Americans. After escaping from them he began his long and unsuccessful attempt to rescue the rest of the family.
In 1842 Bibb began lecturing on slavery and along with Frederick Douglass and William Wells Brown, became one of the best known of the African American activists. Bibb also worked for the Liberty Partyin Michigan. During one lecture tour he met Mary Miles of Boston and the couple married in June, 1848. The following year the Anti-Slavery Society published his autobiography, Narrative of the Life and Adventures of Henry Bibb, An American Slave.
Justice for the slaves!
In January 1851, Bibb joined with Josiah Henson to form the Refugees' Home Colony in Canada for escaped slaves. He also established Canada's first African American newspaper, the Voice of the Fugitive. One of the newspaper's regular contributors was Martin Delaney. During this period Bibb led the campaign to persuade fugitive slaves and free African Americans to settle in Canada. Henry Bibb died during the summer of 1854.