Published in 1852, The Heroic Slave is a short piece of fiction written by Frederick Douglass who at the time was a fugitive slave living in Boston. This is the first piece of fiction written by Douglass. The Heroic Slave is a fictional work inspired by Madison Washington, an enslaved cook on the brig Creole, who led a rebellion on the ship by 19 slaves in November 1841. They succeeded in taking control of the ship en route from Virginia to New Orleans (in what was known as the coastwise slave trade), and ordered it sailed to Nassau in the Bahamas. A total of 135 slaves gained freedom there, as Britain had abolished slavery in 1839. It was the largest and most successful slave rebellion in United States history.
Join 19th-century bibliophile, Kate Howe, for a lively discussion.