I am aware that some of my adventures may seem incredible;
but they are, nevertheless, strictly true.
I have not exaggerated the wrongs inflicted by Slavery;
on the contrary, my descriptions fall far short of the facts.
I have concealed the names of places, and given persons fictitious names.
I had no motive for secrecy on my own account, but I deemed it kind and considerate towards others to pursue this course.
I wish I were more competent to the task I have undertaken.
But I trust my readers will excuse deficiencies in consideration of circumstances.
I was born and reared in Slavery;
and I remained in a Slave State twenty-seven years.
Since I have been at the North, it has been necessary for me to work diligently for my own support, and the education of my children.
This has not left me much leisure to make up for the loss of early opportunities to improve myself;
and it has compelled me to write these pages at irregular intervals, whenever I could snatch an hour from household duties.
When I first arrived in Philadelphia, Bishop Paine advised me to publish a sketch of my life, but I told him I was altogether incompetent to such an undertaking.
Though I have improved my mind somewhat since that time, I still remain of the same opinion;
but I trust my motives will excuse what might otherwise seem presumptuous.
I have not written my experiences in order to attract attention to myself;
on the contrary, it would have been more pleasant to me to have been silent about my own history.
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