Elizabeth Freeman, an uneducated slave, is known to the world as Mumbet, a name apparently derived from Elizabeth. Lacking a surname, she adopted the name Freeman from the word freedom. In 1781, in Sheffield, Massachusetts, Elizabeth obtained an attorney and filed a law suit to gain freedom for herself, her sister and Brom, a laborer and the property of the same slaveholder.
Slavery was such a big part of America's history, and because of the cruelty inflicted to slaves Elizabeth Freeman set the stage for the freedom of future slaves. Elizabeth was also a slave who was treated badly and unfairly. Because of her courage to stand up and fight for what she believed in, no matter how the situation looked, Elizabeth (Mumbet) Freeman inspired everyone who knew her or had heard of her. Elizabeth's achievement aroused in others that anyone can accomplish whatever he or she wants in life and everything is possible if one believes in themselves and is able to listen and learn.
Elizabeth was born into slavery, circa 1742 to African parents, to a slaveholder by the name of Pieter Hogeboom of Clanerack, New York. Pieter Hageboom died in 1758. This may be the date that Elizabeth Freeman and her sister passed into the hands of Colonel John Ashley; as Hogeboom's youngest daughter, Hannah, had married John Ashley of Sheffield, Massachusetts, in 1735. Elizabeth was a slave for almost 30 years when one day the mistress of the house, Hannah, in a fit of rage, violently went to strike Mumbet's sister with a hot kitchen shovel. Mumbet intercepted the blow with her arm scarring her up for life. This was the last straw to the mental and physical abuse and insults she and her sister encountered on a daily basis.
She left the Ashley Mansion and refused to return. Colonel Ashley appealed to the law for the recovery of his property - his slave Elizabeth Freeman. Elizabeth thought long and hard about suing for her freedom. Sh...