Matthias and His Impostures or the Progress of Fanaticism.

New York: Published by Harper & Brothers, 1835.

Price: $3,500.00


About the item

Third edition. 347, [1], [12]pp. Ads in the rear. 12mo. Publisher's cloth, minor fading. Minor foxing. Not in Blockson.

Item #346787

Born into slavery as Isabella Van Wagenen in Ulster County, New York in the late eighteenth century, she won her emancipation under New York state law in 1827 and adopted the name Sojourner Truth in 1843.In the years before becoming Sojourner Truth, Isabella became involved with the members of a religious sect led by Robert Matthews, i.e. Prophet Matthias, a fanatical Christian who claimed to be an ex-Jew touched by God. Matthias and his followers lived in a commune named The Kingdom in Sing Sing (present-day Ossining), New York. Duping three wealthy merchants to support the religious sect, in 1835 after the death of one of merchants Matthews was accused of murder, and Isabella was accused of being his accomplice in the presumed poisoning. After being found innocent in the Matthias case, Isabella filed a slander suit against her accusers and won.

The present work recounts the whole sordid tale of the rise and fall of Matthias and his cult and includes references to "Isabella, the black woman" and "the coloured woman"