10. The Wife of Solomon Northup, Author of 12-Years A Slave, Worked in the Mansion

Morris-Jumel Mansion
Trish Mayo, Courtesy of Morris-Jumel Mansion

In 1841, Eliza Jumel met and hired Anne Hamilton Northup to work in the mansion as a cook. Northup was a free woman of color and wife of Solomon Northup. Solomon was born a free man in New York, but in 1841, he was kidnapped and sold into slavery in the south. The details of these tragic events are retold in his memoir, 12 Years a Slave.

During Solomon’s time as a slave, Anne and their three children worked for and lived with the Jumels. Anne and her daughter Elizabeth worked in the mansion along with Anne and Solomon’s son Alonzo. A second daughter, Margaret, was sent to live with Eliza’s relative, Mary Chase, in Hoboken, New Jersey. According to the Morris-Jumel Mansion, it is believed that Eliza may have assisted Anne in her efforts of freeing her husband from slavery.

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