Elizabeth Keckley (1818-1907), a mixed-race woman bought her freedom in 1855 for $1200. Keckley was an accomplished dressmaker and went on to become the seamstress and confidante of First Lady Mary Todd Lincoln.
In 1862, Keckley established the Contraband Relief Organization, a women’s organization that helped former slaves seek refuge in Washington D.C. In 1868, she published her autobiography Behind the Scenes; or, Thirty Years a Slave and Four Years in the White House. Her public discussion of White House life was unprecedented and was roundly criticized as a salacious tell-all. Keckley was ostracized and the book was pulled from bookstores. She died in the Home for Destitute Colored Women & Children in 1907.-Heidi Durrow
Here’s my Mixed Experience History Minute about Keckley.
Mixed Experience History Month is the annual blog post series created by The New York Times best-selling author Heidi Durrow celebrating the history of the Mixed experience. Established in 2007, Mixed Experience History Month is an effort to highlight the long history of folks and events involved in the Mixed experience. Please look for archived profiles of people, places and events of the Mixed experience every weekday of May at Lightskinned-ed Girl, the blog! Thanks for reading. And check out some of the previous year’s profiles: 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014. Copyright 2015