An ingenious escape from slavery [Futility Closet 013]

Georgia slaves Ellen and William Craft made a daring bid for freedom in 1848: Ellen dressed as a white man and, attended by William as her servant, undertook a perilous 1,000-mile journey by carriage, train, and steamship to the free state of Pennsylvania in the North. In this week's episode of the Futility Closet podcast we'll follow the couple's harrowing five-day adventure through the slave-owning South.

We’ll also discover the best place in the United States to commit a crime and sample the aphoristic poetry of Danish mathematician Piet Hein.

Hosted by Greg and Sharon Ross, Futility Closet is a celebration of the quirky and the curious, the thought-provoking and the simply amusing. This podcast is an audio companion to the popular website that catalogs more than 7,000 curiosities in history, language, mathematics, literature, philosophy, and art. In each episode we explore intriguing finds from our research, share listener contributions, and offer a contest in which listeners can match their wits.

You can support Futility Closet by taking a 5-minute survey. Your answers will help match our show with advertisers that best fit our listeners, like you, and allow us to keep making these podcasts. Listeners who complete the survey will be entered in an ongoing monthly raffle to win a $100 Amazon Gift Card. We promise not to share or sell your email address, and we won’t send you email unless you win.

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Published 4:00 am Tue, Jun 10, 2014

About the Author

Futility Closet is a collection of entertaining curiosities in history, literature, language, art, philosophy, and mathematics, designed to help you waste time as enjoyably as possible.

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