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Be Free or Die

The Amazing Story of Robert Smalls' Escape from Slavery to Union Hero
Narrated by: J. D. Jackson
Length: 8 hrs and 19 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (24 ratings)
Regular price: $24.49
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Publisher's Summary

Facing death rather than enslavement - a story of one man's triumphant choice and ultimate rise to national hero.

It was a mild May morning in Charleston, South Carolina, in 1862, the second year of the Civil War, when a 23-year-old slave named Robert Smalls did the unthinkable and boldly seized a Confederate steamer. With his wife and two young children hidden on board, Smalls and a small crew ran a gauntlet of heavily armed fortifications in Charleston Harbor and delivered the valuable vessel and the massive guns it carried to nearby Union forces.

To be unsuccessful was a death sentence for all. Smalls' courageous and ingenious act freed him and his family from slavery and immediately made him a Union hero while simultaneously challenging much of the country's view of what African-Americans were willing to do to gain their freedom.

After his escape, Smalls served in numerous naval campaigns off Charleston as a civilian boat pilot and eventually became the first black captain of an Army ship. In a particularly poignant moment Smalls even bought the home that he and his mother had once served in as house slaves.

©2017 Cate Lineberry (P)2018 Tantor

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  • Evan
  • Beaufort, SC, United States
  • 02-19-18

Great Book about a Great man

I live in Beaufort so I'm partial to stories about our history. And no man of Beaufort was as great of a mam as the Honorable Robert Smalls. This book should be adapted into a screenplay and made into a movie.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Wow!

What an amazing person, I can't believe I never heard of him before, truly inspiring.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful