Truth wrote to Amy Post, "I sold a good many books at the Convention
and have thus far been greatly prospered." She was now part of another
network through which she could disseminate her writing, locate audiences, and move from place to place. She told Post that at the Convention
she had "found plenty of kind friends just like you & they gave me so many
kind invitations I hardly knew which to accept of first."107
Truth's mission had expanded beyond the preaching of her sojourning
sisters, who continued to carry the still radical message that they had been
authorized by God to speak, to act, to change lives, working their changes
on the power structure of Christian patriarchy. At Akron, Truth went a
different way. While she never denied the power of the Spirit in sustaining
her life work, at Akron Truth had drawn on a uniquely modern and secular
source of authorization and empowerment: her own lived history of
resilience, what she would famously come to call "the deeds of my body."
Amanda Berry Smith, An Autobiography: The Story of the Lord's Dealings
with Mrs. Amanda Smith the Colored Evangelist ( Chicago: Meyer & Brother, 1893), 116-17.
In the Old Testament the Sojourn is the period the Jacob tribes resided in Egypt, from the time they told Pharaoh "For to sojourn in the land are we
come," to the Exodus. Relating "sojourn" to "Egypt" are Genesis 12:10;
47:4; Exodus 12:40; Deuteronomy 26:5; Isaiah 53:4; and Jeremiah 42:15,
17; 43:2; 44:12, 14.
Stowe, "Sojourner Truth, the Libyan Sibyl,"478.
Phillis Wheatley, "On the Death of the Rev. Mr. George Whitefield.
1770," Poems on Various Subjects, Religious and Moral ( London: A. Bell, 1773),23.
C. Eric Lincoln and
Lawrence H. Mamiya, The Black Church in the African
American Experience, 47-50 and 346-81; William D. Piersen, Black Yankees, 66-73.
Jupiter Hammon, An Address to the Negroes in the State of New York, by
Jupiter Hammon, Servant of John Lloyd, jun, Esq of the Manor of Queen's
Village, Long Island ( New York: Carroll and Patterson, 1786), quoted in Milton C. Sernett, ed., Afro-American Religious History: A Documentary
Witness (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1985), 37.
Sherley A. Williams, "The Blues Roots of Contemporary Afro-
American Poetry," in Chant of Saints: A Gathering of Afro-American
Literature, Art, and Scholarship, edited by
Michael S. Harper and
Robert B. Stepto
(Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1979), 125-26.
Stowe, "Sojourner Truth, the Libyan Sibyl,"479. See Sarah Bradford, Harriet Tubman: The Moses of Her People (Secaucus, New Jersey: The