- This event has passed.
On October 18, 1773, American poet Phillis Wheatley gained her freedom
An event every year that begins at 12:00 am on day 18 of October, repeating indefinitely
On October 18, 1773, American poet Phillis Wheatley gained her freedom. She was the first Black American woman to publish a book of poetry, and, despite her time spent enslaved, was a well-known poet throughout England and the American colonies.
Her poetry often touched on themes of religion and death, with much of her language drawing on biblical and classical allusions.
Did you know? Wheatley showed a great talent for poetry at a young age, publishing her first poem at the age of 14 (!) Her book of poems, published in 1773, was admired by such prominent Boston revolutionaries as John Hancock and Benjamin Rush.
Phillis Wheatley, Scipio Moorehead, 1773
-Written by Anna Zemaitaitis, Communications and Design Officer