Harriet Tubman was born Araminta Ross to slave parents, Harriet Green and Ben Ross. Harriet Green was known as Rit. Harriet Tubman was known as Minty. Rit was owned by Mary Pattison Brodess and later her son Edward. Her mother Rit who may have been the child of a white man was a cook for the Brodess family .Her father Ben was a skilled woodsman who managed the timber work on Thompson's plantation.In Harriet’s childhood, Harriet had to watch her little brother and a baby because Harriet’s mother was assigned to "the big house" and had scarce time for her family, as a child Harriet took care of a younger brother and a baby, as was typical in large families. At the age of five or six, Brodess hired her out to a woman named "Miss Susan" as a nursemaid. Tubman was ordered to keep watch on the baby as it slept; when it woke and cried, Tubman was whipped. She carried the scars for the rest of her life. As a child, Harriet also worked at the home of a planter named James Cook. She had to check the muskrat traps in nearby marshes, even after contracting measles. She became so ill that James Cook sent her back to Brodess, where her mother nursed her back to health. Brodess then hired her out again. As she grew older and stronger, she was assigned to field and forest work, driving oxen, plowing, and hauling logs. Around 1844, she married a free black man named John Tubman. Although little is known about him or their time together, the union was complicated because of her slave status. Since the mother's status dictated that of children, any children born to Harriet and John would be enslaved. Harriet changed her name from Araminta to Harriet soon after her marriage, though the exact timing is unclear. She adopted her mother's name, possibly as part to honor another relative. In 1849, Harriet became ill again, and her value as a slave was diminished as a result. Edward Brodess tried to sell her, but could not find a buyer. First of March she began to pray,...
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