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Saturday, May 10, 2014

POET PROFILE

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JOSHUA McCARTER SIMPSON
             (1820-1876)


Was an Anti-Slavery poet, an Underground Railroad conductor, and Abolitionist Songwriter, among many things.  Born free in Windsor, Ohio, he was bound out as a laborer, (indentured servant) and worked for a hard master until the age of 21. With very little schooling, (about 3 months), he eventually taught himself to read and write.

In his own words:
  "As soon as I could write, which was not until I was 21, a spirit of poetry, (which was always in me), became revived, and seemed to waft before my mind, horrid pictures of the condition of my people, and something seemed to say, 'write and sing about it-you can sing what would be death to speak,' so I began to write and sing."

     Simpson's protest poems spoke up for emancipation and civil rights. They were set to popular tunes, and fugitives on the underground railroad sang his song poems in the 1850s.
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For more info on his life, log on to poetryfoundation.org and search his name.

To read a collection of his poetry, log on to poemhunters.com and search his name.

For further details, google-search his name, and read all the entries that are applicable.


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