Miniver Press is proud to announce the publication of Milly Pierce: A Slave Turned Slave-Owner in Pre-Civil War Virginia, by the late CeCe Bullard.
Black, female and on her own, Milly Pierce embodies in many ways the long, complex and convoluted quest for equality that continues to characterize the odyssey of American women and minorities. This astonishing true story of an enslaved woman who won her freedom and found that the only way she could survive was to herself become a slaveholder echoes the themes of the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Edward P. Jones, The Known World.
Milly Pierce did not merely survive white oppression, she made a place for herself in the white power structure—and prospered as a “free woman of colour” rather than a freed slave. She did not accept her freedom meekly as a gift from her white master; she claimed that freedom as her own natural condition. As the Virginia legislature imposed new restrictions on free black citizens’ right to work, to education, to worship, to assemble and to trial by jury, Milly Pierce literally held her ground, the first black woman to own land in that part of the state, and thriving as an astute businesswoman. CeCe Bullard’s meticulously researched book, sure to become a classic of women’s history and African-American history, tells her story for the first time.
CeCe Bullard was a columnist for the Richmond (VA) Times Dispatch and the Richmond Style Weekly and edited the Goochland County Historical Society Magazine. Miniver Press publishes lively and informative non-fiction, specializing in history and culture.
Contact: Nell Minow
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