Frederick Douglass

Frederick Douglass

Overview
Frederick Douglass was an American social reformer, orator, writer
Writer
A writer is a person who produces literature, such as novels, short stories, plays, screenplays, poetry, or other literary art. Skilled writers are able to use language to portray ideas and images....

 and statesman
Statesman
A statesman is usually a politician or other notable public figure who has had a long and respected career in politics or government at the national and international level. As a term of respect, it is usually left to supporters or commentators to use the term...

. After escaping from slavery
Slavery
Slavery is a system under which people are treated as property to be bought and sold, and are forced to work. Slaves can be held against their will from the time of their capture, purchase or birth, and deprived of the right to leave, to refuse to work, or to demand compensation...

, he became a leader of the abolitionist
Abolitionism
Abolitionism is a movement to end slavery.In western Europe and the Americas abolitionism was a movement to end the slave trade and set slaves free. At the behest of Dominican priest Bartolomé de las Casas who was shocked at the treatment of natives in the New World, Spain enacted the first...

 movement, gaining note for his dazzling oratory and incisive antislavery writing. He stood as a living counter-example to slaveholders' arguments that slaves did not have the intellectual capacity to function as independent American citizens. Many Northerners also found it hard to believe that such a great orator had been a slave.

Douglass wrote several autobiographies, eloquently describing his experiences in slavery in his 1845 autobiography, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass is a memoir and treatise on abolition written by famous orator and ex-slave, Frederick Douglass. It is generally held to be the most famous of a number of narratives written by former slaves during the same period...

, which became influential in its support for abolition.
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Quotations

The ground which a colored man occupies in this country is, every inch of it, sternly disputed.

Speech at the American and Foreign Anti-Slavery Society annual meeting, New York City (May 1853)

The destiny of the colored American ... is the destiny of America.

Speech at the Emancipation League, Boston (1862-02-12)

The relation between the white and colored people of this country is the great, paramount, imperative, and all-commanding question for this age and nation to solve.

Speech at the Church of the Puritans, New York City (May 1863)
Encyclopedia
Frederick Douglass was an American social reformer, orator, writer
Writer
A writer is a person who produces literature, such as novels, short stories, plays, screenplays, poetry, or other literary art. Skilled writers are able to use language to portray ideas and images....

 and statesman
Statesman
A statesman is usually a politician or other notable public figure who has had a long and respected career in politics or government at the national and international level. As a term of respect, it is usually left to supporters or commentators to use the term...

. After escaping from slavery
Slavery
Slavery is a system under which people are treated as property to be bought and sold, and are forced to work. Slaves can be held against their will from the time of their capture, purchase or birth, and deprived of the right to leave, to refuse to work, or to demand compensation...

, he became a leader of the abolitionist
Abolitionism
Abolitionism is a movement to end slavery.In western Europe and the Americas abolitionism was a movement to end the slave trade and set slaves free. At the behest of Dominican priest Bartolomé de las Casas who was shocked at the treatment of natives in the New World, Spain enacted the first...

 movement, gaining note for his dazzling oratory and incisive antislavery writing. He stood as a living counter-example to slaveholders' arguments that slaves did not have the intellectual capacity to function as independent American citizens. Many Northerners also found it hard to believe that such a great orator had been a slave.

Douglass wrote several autobiographies, eloquently describing his experiences in slavery in his 1845 autobiography, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass is a memoir and treatise on abolition written by famous orator and ex-slave, Frederick Douglass. It is generally held to be the most famous of a number of narratives written by former slaves during the same period...

, which became influential in its support for abolition. He wrote two more autobiographies, with his last, Life and Times of Frederick Douglass
Life and Times of Frederick Douglass
Life and Times of Frederick Douglass is Frederick Douglass' third autobiography, published in 1881, revised in 1892. Because of the emancipation of American slaves during and following the American Civil War, Douglas gave more details about his life as a slave and his escape from slavery in this...

, published in 1881 and covering events through and after the Civil War. After the Civil War
American Civil War
The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

, Douglass remained active in the United States' struggle to reach its potential as a "land of the free". Douglass actively supported women's suffrage
Women's suffrage
Women's suffrage or woman suffrage is the right of women to vote and to run for office. The expression is also used for the economic and political reform movement aimed at extending these rights to women and without any restrictions or qualifications such as property ownership, payment of tax, or...

. Without his approval he became the first African American nominated for Vice President of the United States
Vice President of the United States
The Vice President of the United States is the holder of a public office created by the United States Constitution. The Vice President, together with the President of the United States, is indirectly elected by the people, through the Electoral College, to a four-year term...

 as the running mate of Victoria Woodhull
Victoria Woodhull
Victoria Claflin Woodhull was an American leader of the woman's suffrage movement, an advocate of free love; together with her sister, the first women to operate a brokerage in Wall Street; the first women to start a weekly newspaper; an activist for women's rights and labor reforms and, in 1872,...

 on the impracticable and small Equal Rights Party
Equal Rights Party
Equal Rights Party may refer to:*Equal Rights Party *Equal Rights Party , four different 19th century American political parties*Liberia Equal Rights Party*Equal Rights...

 ticket. Douglass held multiple public offices.

Douglass was a firm believer in the equality
Egalitarianism
Egalitarianism is a trend of thought that favors equality of some sort among moral agents, whether persons or animals. Emphasis is placed upon the fact that equality contains the idea of equity of quality...

 of all people, whether black
Black people
The term black people is used in systems of racial classification for humans of a dark skinned phenotype, relative to other racial groups.Different societies apply different criteria regarding who is classified as "black", and often social variables such as class, socio-economic status also plays a...

, female
Woman
A woman , pl: women is a female human. The term woman is usually reserved for an adult, with the term girl being the usual term for a female child or adolescent...

, Native American
Native Americans in the United States
Native Americans in the United States are the indigenous peoples in North America within the boundaries of the present-day continental United States, parts of Alaska, and the island state of Hawaii. They are composed of numerous, distinct tribes, states, and ethnic groups, many of which survive as...

, or recent immigrant
Immigration to the United States
Immigration to the United States has been a major source of population growth and cultural change throughout much of the history of the United States. The economic, social, and political aspects of immigration have caused controversy regarding ethnicity, economic benefits, jobs for non-immigrants,...

, famously quoted as saying, "I would unite with anybody to do right and with nobody to do wrong."

Life as a slave


Frederick Augustus Washington Bailey, who later became known as Frederick Douglass, was born a slave in Talbot County, Maryland
Talbot County, Maryland
-2010:Whereas according to the 2010 U.S. Census Bureau:*81.4% White*12.8% Black*0.2% Native American*1.2% Asian*0.1% Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander*1.6% Two or more races*2.7% Other races*5.5% Hispanic or Latino -2000:...

, between Hillsboro
Hillsboro, Maryland
Hillsboro is a town in Caroline County, Maryland, United States. The population was 163 at the 2000 census. Daffin House and St. Paul's Episcopal Church were listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1975.-Geography:...

 and Cordova
Cordova, Maryland
Cordova is a census-designated place in Talbot County, Maryland, United States. The population was 592 at the 2000 census.-Geography:Cordova is located at ....

, probably in his grandmother's shack east of Tappers Corner (38.8845°N 75.958°W) and west of Tuckahoe Creek
Tuckahoe Creek
Tuckahoe Creek is a tributary of the Choptank River on Maryland's Eastern Shore. It is sometimes referred to as the Tuckahoe River. Upstream of Hillsboro, it forms the boundary between Caroline County and Queen Anne's County, passing through Tuckahoe State Park and dividing the small towns of...

. The exact date of Douglass' birth is unknown. He chose to celebrate it on Feb. 14. The exact year is also unknown (on the first page of Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass is a memoir and treatise on abolition written by famous orator and ex-slave, Frederick Douglass. It is generally held to be the most famous of a number of narratives written by former slaves during the same period...

, he stated: "I have no accurate knowledge of my age, never having seen any authentic record containing it.")Frederick Douglass began his own story thus: "I was born in Tuckahoe, near Hillsborough, and about twelve miles from Easton, in Talbot county, Maryland." (Tuckahoe is not a town; it refers to the area west of the creek in Talbot County.) In successive autobiographies, Douglass gave more precise estimates of when he was born, his final estimate being 1817. He adopted February 14 as his birthday because his mother Harriet Bailey used to call him her "little valentine
Valentine's Day
Saint Valentine's Day, commonly shortened to Valentine's Day, is an annual commemoration held on February 14 celebrating love and affection between intimate companions. The day is named after one or more early Christian martyrs named Saint Valentine, and was established by Pope Gelasius I in 496...

".
After this separation, he lived with his maternal grandmother, Betty Bailey. His mother died when Douglass was about 10. At age seven, Douglass was separated from his grandmother and moved to the Wye House
Wye House
Wye House is a large Southern frame plantation house located in Talbot County, Maryland, seven miles northwest of Easton. It was listed for preservation on the National Register of Historic Places in 1970.-History:...

 plantation
Plantations in the American South
Plantations were an important aspect of the history of the American South, particularly the antebellum .-Planter :The owner of a plantation was called a planter...

, where Aaron Anthony worked as overseer
Overseer
Rob Overseer is an English DJ/producer, born in Leeds whose works have been included in soundtracks for Animatrix, Snatch, Any Given Sunday and The Girl Next Door, as well as video games like Need for Speed: Underground, NFL Gameday 2004, several Matchstick Productions ski films, and Stuntman,...

. When Anthony died, Douglass was given to Lucretia Auld, wife of Thomas Auld. She sent Douglass to serve Thomas' brother Hugh Auld in Baltimore.

When Douglass was about twelve years old, Hugh Auld's wife Sophia started teaching him the alphabet
Alphabet
An alphabet is a standard set of letters—basic written symbols or graphemes—each of which represents a phoneme in a spoken language, either as it exists now or as it was in the past. There are other systems, such as logographies, in which each character represents a word, morpheme, or semantic...

 despite the fact that it was against the law to teach slaves to read. Douglass described her as a kind and tender-hearted woman, who treated Douglass like one human being ought to treat another. When Hugh Auld discovered her activity, he strongly disapproved, saying that if a slave learned to read, he would become dissatisfied with his condition and desire freedom. Douglass later referred to this statement as the "first decidedly antislavery lecture" he had ever heard. As told in his autobiography, Douglass succeeded in learning to read from white children in the neighborhood and by observing the writings of men with whom he worked. Mrs. Auld one day saw Douglass reading a newspaper; she ran over to him and snatched it from him, with a face that said education and slavery were incompatible with each other.

He continued, secretly, to teach himself how to read and write. Douglass is noted as saying that "knowledge is the pathway from slavery to freedom." As Douglass began to read newspapers, political materials, and books of every description, he was exposed to a new realm of thought that led him to question and condemn the institution of slavery. In later years, Douglass credited The Columbian Orator
The Columbian Orator
First appearing in 1797, The Columbian Orator, a collection of political essays, poems, and dialogues, was widely used in American schoolrooms in the first quarter of the nineteenth century to teach reading and speaking. Many of the speeches included in the anthology celebrated "republican" virtues...

, which he discovered at about age twelve, with clarifying and defining his views on freedom and human rights.

When Douglass was hired out to William Freeland, he taught other slaves on the plantation to read the New Testament
New Testament
The New Testament is the second major division of the Christian biblical canon, the first such division being the much longer Old Testament....

 at a weekly Sunday school
Sunday school
Sunday school is the generic name for many different types of religious education pursued on Sundays by various denominations.-England:The first Sunday school may have been opened in 1751 in St. Mary's Church, Nottingham. Another early start was made by Hannah Ball, a native of High Wycombe in...

. As word spread, the interest among slaves in learning to read was so great that in any week, more than 40 slaves would attend lessons. For about six months, their study went relatively unnoticed. While Freeland was complacent about their activities, other plantation owners became incensed that their slaves were being educated. One Sunday they burst in on the gathering, armed with clubs and stones, to disperse the congregation permanently.

In 1833, Thomas Auld took Douglass back from Hugh after a dispute ("[A]s a means of punishing Hugh," Douglass wrote). Dissatisfied with Douglass, Thomas Auld sent him to work for Edward Covey
Edward Covey
Edward Covey was an early 19th-century American slaveholder. He is described by Frederick Douglass in My Bondage and My Freedom as a "a first rate hand at breaking young negroes". In 1833, Douglass was rented to Covey for a year so that Covey would break the teenage slave's spirit. One day, after...

, a poor farmer who had a reputation as a "slave-breaker." He whipped Douglass regularly. The sixteen-year-old Douglass was nearly broken psychologically by his ordeal under Covey, but he finally rebelled against the beatings and fought back. After losing a physical confrontation with Douglass, Covey never tried to beat him again.

From slavery to freedom


Douglass first tried to escape from Freeland, who had hired him out from his owner Colonel Lloyd, but was unsuccessful. In 1836, he tried to escape from his new owner Covey, but failed again. In 1837, Douglass met and fell in love with Anna Murray
Anna Murray-Douglass
Anna Murray-Douglass was an American abolitionist, member of the underground railroad, and the first wife of American social reformer and statesman Frederick Douglass, from 1838 to her death.-Life:...

, a free black
Free people of color
A free person of color in the context of the history of slavery in the Americas, is a person of full or partial African descent who was not enslaved...

 in Baltimore about five years older than him. Her freedom strengthened his belief in the possibility of his own.

On September 3, 1838, Douglass successfully escaped by boarding a train to Havre de Grace, Maryland
Havre de Grace, Maryland
Havre de Grace is a city in Harford County, Maryland, United States. Located at the mouth of the Susquehanna River and the head of the Chesapeake Bay, Havre de Grace is named after the port city of Le Havre, France, which was first named Le Havre de Grâce, meaning in French "Harbor of Grace." As...

. He was dressed in a sailor
Sailor
A sailor, mariner, or seaman is a person who navigates water-borne vessels or assists in their operation, maintenance, or service. The term can apply to professional mariners, military personnel, and recreational sailors as well as a plethora of other uses...

's uniform
Uniform
A uniform is a set of standard clothing worn by members of an organization while participating in that organization's activity. Modern uniforms are worn by armed forces and paramilitary organizations such as police, emergency services, security guards, in some workplaces and schools and by inmates...

, provided to him by Murray, who also gave him part of her savings to cover his travel costs, and carried identification papers which he had obtained from a free black seaman. He crossed the Susquehanna River
Susquehanna River
The Susquehanna River is a river located in the northeastern United States. At long, it is the longest river on the American east coast that drains into the Atlantic Ocean, and with its watershed it is the 16th largest river in the United States, and the longest river in the continental United...

 by ferry
Ferry
A ferry is a form of transportation, usually a boat, but sometimes a ship, used to carry primarily passengers, and sometimes vehicles and cargo as well, across a body of water. Most ferries operate on regular, frequent, return services...

 at Havre de Grace, then continued by train to Wilmington
Wilmington, Delaware
Wilmington is the largest city in the state of Delaware, United States, and is located at the confluence of the Christina River and Brandywine Creek, near where the Christina flows into the Delaware River. It is the county seat of New Castle County and one of the major cities in the Delaware Valley...

, Delaware
Delaware
Delaware is a U.S. state located on the Atlantic Coast in the Mid-Atlantic region of the United States. It is bordered to the south and west by Maryland, and to the north by Pennsylvania...

. From there he went by steamboat to "Quaker City" (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is a U.S. state that is located in the Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic regions of the United States. The state borders Delaware and Maryland to the south, West Virginia to the southwest, Ohio to the west, New York and Ontario, Canada, to the north, and New Jersey to...

) and continued to the safe house of abolitionist David Ruggles
David Ruggles
David Ruggles was an anti-slavery activist who was active in the New York Committee of Vigilance and the Underground Railroad. He was an "African-American printer in New York City during the 1830s", who "was the prototype for black activist journalists of his time"...

 in New York
New York City
New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

; the whole journey took less than 24 hours.

Frederick Douglass later wrote of his arrival in New York:
Once he had arrived, he sent for Murray to follow him to New York; she arrived with the necessary basics for them to set up home. They were married on September 15, 1838, by a black Presbyterian minister eleven days after his arrival in New York. At first, they adopted Johnson as their married name.

Abolitionist activities



The couple settled in New Bedford, Massachusetts
New Bedford, Massachusetts
New Bedford is a city in Bristol County, Massachusetts, United States, located south of Boston, southeast of Providence, Rhode Island, and about east of Fall River. As of the 2010 census, the city had a total population of 95,072, making it the sixth-largest city in Massachusetts...

. After meeting and staying with Nathan and Mary Johnson
Nathan and Mary (Polly) Johnson properties
The Nathan and Mary Johnson properties are a National Historic Landmark at 17-19 and 21 Seventh Street in New Bedford, Massachusetts. Originally two structures, one dating to the 1820s and an 1857 house joined with the older one shortly after construction...

, they adopted Douglass as their married name. Douglass joined several organizations, including a black church, and regularly attended abolitionist meetings. He subscribed to William Lloyd Garrison
William Lloyd Garrison
William Lloyd Garrison was a prominent American abolitionist, journalist, and social reformer. He is best known as the editor of the abolitionist newspaper The Liberator, and as one of the founders of the American Anti-Slavery Society, he promoted "immediate emancipation" of slaves in the United...

's weekly journal The Liberator. In 1841 he first heard Garrison speak at a meeting of the Bristol Anti-Slavery Society. At one of these meetings, Douglass was unexpectedly invited to speak.

After he told his story, he was encouraged to become an anti-slavery lecturer. Douglass was inspired by Garrison and later stated that "no face and form ever impressed me with such sentiments [of the hatred of slavery] as did those of William Lloyd Garrison." Garrison was likewise impressed with Douglass and wrote of him in The Liberator. Several days later, Douglass delivered his first speech at the Massachusetts Anti-Slavery Society's annual convention in Nantucket
Nantucket, Massachusetts
Nantucket is an island south of Cape Cod, Massachusetts, in the United States. Together with the small islands of Tuckernuck and Muskeget, it constitutes the town of Nantucket, Massachusetts, and the coterminous Nantucket County, which are consolidated. Part of the town is designated the Nantucket...

. Then 23 years old, Douglass conquered his nervousness and gave an eloquent speech about his rough life as a slave.

In 1843, Douglass participated in the American Anti-Slavery Society
American Anti-Slavery Society
The American Anti-Slavery Society was an abolitionist society founded by William Lloyd Garrison and Arthur Tappan. Frederick Douglass was a key leader of this society and often spoke at its meetings. William Wells Brown was another freed slave who often spoke at meetings. By 1838, the society had...

's Hundred Conventions project, a six-month tour of meeting halls throughout the Eastern
Eastern United States
The Eastern United States, the American East, or simply the East is traditionally defined as the states east of the Mississippi River. The first two tiers of states west of the Mississippi have traditionally been considered part of the West, but can be included in the East today; usually in...

 and Midwestern United States
Midwestern United States
The Midwestern United States is one of the four U.S. geographic regions defined by the United States Census Bureau, providing an official definition of the American Midwest....

. During this tour, he was frequently accosted, and at a lecture in Pendleton, Indiana
Pendleton, Indiana
Pendleton is a town in Fall Creek Township, Madison County, Indiana, United States. It is part of the Anderson, Indiana Metropolitan Statistical Area...

, was chased and beaten by an angry mob before being rescued by a local Quaker family, the Hardys. His hand was broken in the attack; it healed improperly and bothered him for the rest of his life. A stone marker in Falls Park in the Pendleton Historic District
Pendleton Historic District (Pendleton, Indiana)
The Pendleton Historic District is an area in Pendleton, Indiana roughly bounded by Fall Creek, the Conrail right-of-way, Madison and Adams Sts.. Sites of interest include a relatively intact 19th-century Business District, Fall Creek Park, the Grey Goose Inn and a large variety of homes in...

 commemorates this event.

Autobiography



Douglass' best-known work is his first autobiography
Autobiography
An autobiography is a book about the life of a person, written by that person.-Origin of the term:...

 Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass is a memoir and treatise on abolition written by famous orator and ex-slave, Frederick Douglass. It is generally held to be the most famous of a number of narratives written by former slaves during the same period...

, published in 1845. At the time, some skeptics questioned whether a black man could have produced such an eloquent piece of literature. The book received generally positive reviews and became an immediate bestseller
Bestseller
A bestseller is a book that is identified as extremely popular by its inclusion on lists of currently top selling titles that are based on publishing industry and book trade figures and published by newspapers, magazines, or bookstore chains. Some lists are broken down into classifications and...

. Within three years of its publication, it had been reprinted nine times with 11,000 copies circulating in the United States; it was also translated into French
French language
French is a Romance language spoken as a first language in France, the Romandy region in Switzerland, Wallonia and Brussels in Belgium, Monaco, the regions of Quebec and Acadia in Canada, and by various communities elsewhere. Second-language speakers of French are distributed throughout many parts...

 and Dutch
Dutch language
Dutch is a West Germanic language and the native language of the majority of the population of the Netherlands, Belgium, and Suriname, the three member states of the Dutch Language Union. Most speakers live in the European Union, where it is a first language for about 23 million and a second...

 and published in Europe.

Douglass published three versions of his autobiography during his lifetime (and revised the third of these), each time expanding on the previous one. The 1845 Narrative, which was his biggest seller, was followed by My Bondage and My Freedom
My Bondage and My Freedom
My Bondage and My Freedom is an autobiographical slave narrative written by Frederick Douglass and published in 1855. It is the second of three autobiographies written by Douglass, and is mainly an expansion of his first , discussing in greater detail his transition from bondage to liberty...

in 1855. In 1881, after the Civil War
American Civil War
The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

, Douglass published Life and Times of Frederick Douglass
Life and Times of Frederick Douglass
Life and Times of Frederick Douglass is Frederick Douglass' third autobiography, published in 1881, revised in 1892. Because of the emancipation of American slaves during and following the American Civil War, Douglas gave more details about his life as a slave and his escape from slavery in this...

, which he revised in 1892.

Travels to Ireland and Britain


Douglass' friends and mentors feared that the publicity would draw the attention of his ex-owner, Hugh Auld, who might try to get his "property" back. They encouraged Douglass to tour Ireland
Ireland
Ireland is an island to the northwest of continental Europe. It is the third-largest island in Europe and the twentieth-largest island on Earth...

, as many former slaves had done. Douglass set sail on the Cambria for Liverpool
Liverpool
Liverpool is a city and metropolitan borough of Merseyside, England, along the eastern side of the Mersey Estuary. It was founded as a borough in 1207 and was granted city status in 1880...

 on August 16, 1845, and arrived in Ireland as the Irish Potato Famine was beginning.
"Eleven days and a half gone and I have crossed three thousand miles of the perilous deep. Instead of a democratic government, I am under a monarchical government. Instead of the bright, blue sky of America, I am covered with the soft, grey fog of the Emerald Isle [Ireland]. I breathe, and lo! the chattel [slave] becomes a man. I gaze around in vain for one who will question my equal humanity, claim me as his slave, or offer me an insult. I employ a cab—I am seated beside white people—I reach the hotel—I enter the same door—I am shown into the same parlour—I dine at the same table—and no one is offended... I find myself regarded and treated at every turn with the kindness and deference paid to white people. When I go to church, I am met by no upturned nose and scornful lip to tell me, 'We don't allow niggers in here!'" – from My Bondage and My Freedom
My Bondage and My Freedom
My Bondage and My Freedom is an autobiographical slave narrative written by Frederick Douglass and published in 1855. It is the second of three autobiographies written by Douglass, and is mainly an expansion of his first , discussing in greater detail his transition from bondage to liberty...

.
He also met and befriended the Irish nationalist
Irish nationalism
Irish nationalism manifests itself in political and social movements and in sentiment inspired by a love for Irish culture, language and history, and as a sense of pride in Ireland and in the Irish people...

 Daniel O'Connell
Daniel O'Connell
Daniel O'Connell Daniel O'Connell Daniel O'Connell (6 August 1775 – 15 May 1847; often referred to as The Liberator, or The Emancipator, was an Irish political leader in the first half of the 19th century...

 who was to prove to be a great inspiration.

Douglass spent two years in Ireland
Ireland
Ireland is an island to the northwest of continental Europe. It is the third-largest island in Europe and the twentieth-largest island on Earth...

 and Britain
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

, where he gave many lectures in churches and chapels. His draw was such that some facilities were "crowded to suffocation"; an example was his hugely popular London Reception Speech, which Douglass delivered at Alexander Fletcher's
Alexander Fletcher (minister)
The Rev. Dr. Alexander Fletcher , the Children's Friend, was a Scottish Presbyterian, and later an Independent divine in England...

 Finsbury Chapel in May 1846. Douglass remarked that in England he was treated not "as a color, but as a man."

During this trip Douglass became legally free, as British supporters raised funds to purchase his freedom from his American owner Thomas Auld. British sympathizers led by Ellen Richardson of Newcastle upon Tyne
Newcastle upon Tyne
Newcastle upon Tyne is a city and metropolitan borough of Tyne and Wear, in North East England. Historically a part of Northumberland, it is situated on the north bank of the River Tyne...

 collected the money needed. In 1846 Douglass met with Thomas Clarkson
Thomas Clarkson
Thomas Clarkson , was an English abolitionist, and a leading campaigner against the slave trade in the British Empire. He helped found The Society for Effecting the Abolition of the Slave Trade and helped achieve passage of the Slave Trade Act of 1807, which ended British trade in slaves...

, one of the last living British abolitionists, who had persuaded Parliament to abolish slavery in Great Britain and its colonies. Many tried to encourage Douglass to remain in England to be truly free of the fear of chains, but with three million of his black brethren in bondage in the US, he left England in spring of 1847.

Return to the United States


After returning to the US, Douglass produced some abolitionist newspapers: The North Star, Frederick Douglass Weekly, Frederick Douglass' Paper, Douglass' Monthly and New National Era. The motto
Motto
A motto is a phrase meant to formally summarize the general motivation or intention of a social group or organization. A motto may be in any language, but Latin is the most used. The local language is usual in the mottoes of governments...

 of The North Star was "Right is of no Sex – Truth is of no Color – God is the Father of us all, and we are all brethren." The abolitionist newspapers were mainly funded by supporters in England, who had sent him five hundred pounds to use as he so chose.

In September 1848, Douglass published a letter addressed to his former master, Thomas Auld, berating him for his conduct, and enquiring after members of his family still held by Auld. In a graphic passage, Douglass asked Auld how he would feel if Douglass had come to take away his daughter Amanda as a slave, treating her the way he and members of his family had been treated by Auld.

Women's rights



In 1848, Douglass was the only African American to attend the first women's rights
Women's rights
Women's rights are entitlements and freedoms claimed for women and girls of all ages in many societies.In some places these rights are institutionalized or supported by law, local custom, and behaviour, whereas in others they may be ignored or suppressed...

 convention, the Seneca Falls Convention
Seneca Falls Convention
The Seneca Falls Convention was an early and influential women's rights convention held in Seneca Falls, New York, July 19–20, 1848. It was organized by local New York women upon the occasion of a visit by Boston-based Lucretia Mott, a Quaker famous for her speaking ability, a skill rarely...

. Elizabeth Cady Stanton
Elizabeth Cady Stanton
Elizabeth Cady Stanton was an American social activist, abolitionist, and leading figure of the early woman's movement...

 asked the assembly to pass a resolution asking for women's suffrage
Women's suffrage
Women's suffrage or woman suffrage is the right of women to vote and to run for office. The expression is also used for the economic and political reform movement aimed at extending these rights to women and without any restrictions or qualifications such as property ownership, payment of tax, or...

. Many of those present opposed the idea, including influential Quakers James
James Mott
James Mott was a Quaker leader, teacher, and merchant as well as an activist for anti-slavery and women's rights. He was born in Cowneck in North Hempstead on Long Island, to a Quaker family...

 and Lucretia Mott
Lucretia Mott
Lucretia Coffin Mott was an American Quaker, abolitionist, social reformer, and proponent of women's rights.- Early life and education:...

. Douglass stood and spoke eloquently in favor; he said that he could not accept the right to vote as a black man if women could not also claim that right. He suggested that the world would be a better place if women were involved in the political sphere.
"In this denial of the right to participate in government, not merely the degradation of woman and the perpetuation of a great injustice happens, but the maiming and repudiation of one-half of the moral and intellectual power of the government of the world."
Douglass' powerful words rang true with enough attendees that the resolution passed.

Douglass refines his ideology


In 1851, Douglass merged the North Star with Gerrit Smith
Gerrit Smith
Gerrit Smith was a leading United States social reformer, abolitionist, politician, and philanthropist...

's Liberty Party Paper to form Frederick Douglass' Paper, which was published until 1860. Douglass came to agree with Smith and Lysander Spooner
Lysander Spooner
Lysander Spooner was an American individualist anarchist, political philosopher, Deist, abolitionist, supporter of the labor movement, legal theorist, and entrepreneur of the nineteenth century. He is also known for competing with the U.S...

 that the United States Constitution
United States Constitution
The Constitution of the United States is the supreme law of the United States of America. It is the framework for the organization of the United States government and for the relationship of the federal government with the states, citizens, and all people within the United States.The first three...

 was an anti-slavery document.

This reversed his earlier agreement with William Lloyd Garrison
William Lloyd Garrison
William Lloyd Garrison was a prominent American abolitionist, journalist, and social reformer. He is best known as the editor of the abolitionist newspaper The Liberator, and as one of the founders of the American Anti-Slavery Society, he promoted "immediate emancipation" of slaves in the United...

 that it was pro-slavery. Garrison had publicly expressed his opinion by burning copies of the document. Further contributing to their growing separation, Garrison was worried that the North Star competed with his own National Anti-Slavery Standard
National Anti-Slavery Standard
The National Anti-Slavery Standard was the official weekly newspaper of the American Anti-Slavery Society, established in 1840 under the editorship of Lydia Maria Child and David Lee Child. The paper published continuously until the ratification of the Fifteenth Amendment to the United States...

and Marius Robinson's Anti-Slavery Bugle.
Douglass' change of position on the Constitution was one of the most notable incidents of the division in the abolitionist movement after the publication of Spooner's book The Unconstitutionality of Slavery
The Unconstitutionality of Slavery
The Unconstitutionality of Slavery was a pamphlet by American abolitionist Lysander Spooner advocating the view that the U.S. Constitution prohibited slavery. This view was advocated in contrast to that of William Lloyd Garrison who advocated opposing the constitution on the grounds that it...

in 1846. This shift in opinion, and other political differences, created a rift between Douglass and Garrison. Douglass further angered Garrison by saying that the Constitution could and should be used as an instrument in the fight against slavery.

On July 5, 1852, Douglass delivered an address to the Ladies of the Rochester Anti Slavery Sewing Society, which eventually became known as "What to the slave is the 4th of July?" It was a blistering attack on the hypocrisy of the United States in general and the Christian church in particular.
Douglass believed that education was key for African Americans to improve their lives. For this reason, he was an early advocate for desegregation of schools. In the 1850s, he was especially outspoken in New York. The facilities and instruction for African-American children were vastly inferior. Douglass criticized the situation and called for court action to open all schools to all children. He stated that inclusion within the educational system was a more pressing need for African Americans than political issues such as suffrage.

Douglass was acquainted with the radical abolitionist John Brown
John Brown (abolitionist)
John Brown was an American revolutionary abolitionist, who in the 1850s advocated and practiced armed insurrection as a means to abolish slavery in the United States. He led the Pottawatomie Massacre during which five men were killed, in 1856 in Bleeding Kansas, and made his name in the...

 but disapproved of Brown's plan to start an armed slave rebellion
Slave rebellion
A slave rebellion is an armed uprising by slaves. Slave rebellions have occurred in nearly all societies that practice slavery, and are amongst the most feared events for slaveholders...

 in the South
Southern United States
The Southern United States—commonly referred to as the American South, Dixie, or simply the South—constitutes a large distinctive area in the southeastern and south-central United States...

. Brown visited Douglass' home two months before he led the raid on the federal armory
Harpers Ferry Armory
Harpers Ferry Armory, more formally known as the United States Armory and Arsenal at Harpers Ferry, was the second federal armory commissioned by the United States government located in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia , the first federal armory being the Springfield Armory located in Springfield,...

 in Harpers Ferry
Harpers Ferry, West Virginia
Harpers Ferry is a historic town in Jefferson County, West Virginia, United States. In many books the town is called "Harper's Ferry" with an apostrophe....

. After the raid, Douglass fled for a time to Canada, fearing guilt by association and arrest as a co-conspirator. Douglass believed that the attack on federal property would enrage the American public. Douglass later shared a stage at a speaking engagement in Harpers Ferry with Andrew Hunter
Andrew Hunter (lawyer)
Andrew Hunter was the District Attorney for Charles Town, Virginia, who prosecuted John Brown for the raid on Harpers Ferry....

, the prosecutor who successfully convicted Brown.

In March 1860, Douglass' youngest daughter Annie died in Rochester, New York
Rochester, New York
Rochester is a city in Monroe County, New York, south of Lake Ontario in the United States. Known as The World's Image Centre, it was also once known as The Flour City, and more recently as The Flower City...

, while he was still in England. Douglass returned from England the following month. He took a route through Canada to avoid detection.

Before the Civil War


By the time of the Civil War
American Civil War
The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

, Douglass was one of the most famous black men in the country, known for his orations on the condition of the black race and on other issues such as women's rights
Women's rights
Women's rights are entitlements and freedoms claimed for women and girls of all ages in many societies.In some places these rights are institutionalized or supported by law, local custom, and behaviour, whereas in others they may be ignored or suppressed...

. His eloquence gathered crowds at every location. His reception by leaders in England and Ireland added to his stature.

Fight for emancipation and suffrage


Douglass and the abolitionists argued that because the aim of the Civil War was to end slavery, African Americans should be allowed to engage in the fight for their freedom. Douglass publicized this view in his newspapers and several speeches. Douglass conferred with President
President of the United States
The President of the United States of America is the head of state and head of government of the United States. The president leads the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces....

 Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln was the 16th President of the United States, serving from March 1861 until his assassination in April 1865. He successfully led his country through a great constitutional, military and moral crisis – the American Civil War – preserving the Union, while ending slavery, and...

 in 1863 on the treatment of black soldiers, and with President Andrew Johnson
Andrew Johnson
Andrew Johnson was the 17th President of the United States . As Vice-President of the United States in 1865, he succeeded Abraham Lincoln following the latter's assassination. Johnson then presided over the initial and contentious Reconstruction era of the United States following the American...

 on the subject of black suffrage
Suffrage
Suffrage, political franchise, or simply the franchise, distinct from mere voting rights, is the civil right to vote gained through the democratic process...

.

President Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln was the 16th President of the United States, serving from March 1861 until his assassination in April 1865. He successfully led his country through a great constitutional, military and moral crisis – the American Civil War – preserving the Union, while ending slavery, and...

's Emancipation Proclamation
Emancipation Proclamation
The Emancipation Proclamation is an executive order issued by United States President Abraham Lincoln on January 1, 1863, during the American Civil War using his war powers. It proclaimed the freedom of 3.1 million of the nation's 4 million slaves, and immediately freed 50,000 of them, with nearly...

, which took effect on January 1, 1863, declared the freedom of all slaves in Confederate-held territory. (Slaves in Union-held areas and Northern states would become freed with the adoption of the 13th Amendment on December 6, 1865.) Douglass described the spirit of those awaiting the proclamation: "We were waiting and listening as for a bolt from the sky ... we were watching ... by the dim light of the stars for the dawn of a new day ... we were longing for the answer to the agonizing prayers of centuries."

During the U.S. Presidential Election of 1864
United States presidential election, 1864
In the United States Presidential election of 1864, Abraham Lincoln was re-elected as president. The election was held during the Civil War. Lincoln ran under the National Union ticket against Democratic candidate George B. McClellan, his former top general. McClellan ran as the "peace candidate",...

, Douglass supported John C. Frémont
John C. Frémont
John Charles Frémont , was an American military officer, explorer, and the first candidate of the anti-slavery Republican Party for the office of President of the United States. During the 1840s, that era's penny press accorded Frémont the sobriquet The Pathfinder...

. Douglass was disappointed that President Lincoln did not publicly endorse suffrage
Suffrage
Suffrage, political franchise, or simply the franchise, distinct from mere voting rights, is the civil right to vote gained through the democratic process...

 for black freedmen. Douglass believed that since African American
African American
African Americans are citizens or residents of the United States who have at least partial ancestry from any of the native populations of Sub-Saharan Africa and are the direct descendants of enslaved Africans within the boundaries of the present United States...

 men were fighting in the American Civil War
American Civil War
The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

, they deserved the right to vote.

With the North no longer obliged to return slaves to their owners in the South, Douglass fought for equality for his people. He made plans with Lincoln to move the liberated slaves out of the South. During the war, Douglass helped the Union by serving as a recruiter for the 54th Massachusetts Regiment. His son Frederick Douglass Jr. also served as a recruiter and his other son, Lewis Douglass, fought for the 54th Massachusetts Regiment at the Battle of Fort Wagner
Fort Wagner
Fort Wagner was a beachhead fortification on Morris Island, South Carolina, that covered the southern approach to Charleston harbor...

.

Slavery everywhere in the United States was outlawed by the post-war (1865) ratification of the 13th Amendment
Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution
The Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution officially abolished and continues to prohibit slavery and involuntary servitude, except as punishment for a crime. It was passed by the Senate on April 8, 1864, passed by the House on January 31, 1865, and adopted on December 6, 1865. On...

. The 14th Amendment
Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution
The Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution was adopted on July 9, 1868, as one of the Reconstruction Amendments.Its Citizenship Clause provides a broad definition of citizenship that overruled the Dred Scott v...

 provided for citizenship and equal protection under the law. The 15th Amendment
Fifteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution
The Fifteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution prohibits each government in the United States from denying a citizen the right to vote based on that citizen's "race, color, or previous condition of servitude"...

 protected all citizens from being discriminated against in voting because of race. Douglass' support for the 15th Amendment, which failed to give women the vote, led to a temporary estrangement between him and the women's rights movement.

Lincoln's death



At the unveiling of the Emancipation Memorial
Emancipation Memorial
The Emancipation Memorial, also known as the Freedman’s Memorial or the Emancipation Group, and sometimes referred to as the "Lincoln Memorial" before the present more prominent so-named memorial was built, is a monument in Lincoln Park in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Washington, D.C.Designed...

 in Washington's Lincoln Park, Douglass was the keynote speaker. In his speech, Douglass spoke frankly about Lincoln, noting what he perceived as both the positive and negative attributes of the late President. He called Lincoln "the white man's president" and cited his tardiness in joining the cause of emancipation. He noted that Lincoln initially opposed the expansion of slavery but did not support its elimination. But Douglass also asked, "Can any colored man, or any white man friendly to the freedom of all men, ever forget the night which followed the first day of January 1863
Emancipation Proclamation
The Emancipation Proclamation is an executive order issued by United States President Abraham Lincoln on January 1, 1863, during the American Civil War using his war powers. It proclaimed the freedom of 3.1 million of the nation's 4 million slaves, and immediately freed 50,000 of them, with nearly...

, when the world was to see if Abraham Lincoln would prove to be as good as his word?" At this speech he also said: "Though Mr. Lincoln shared the prejudices of his white fellow-countrymen against the Negro, it is hardly necessary to say that in his heart of hearts he loathed and hated slavery...."

The crowd, roused by his speech, gave him a standing ovation. A long-told anecdote claims that the widow Mary Lincoln
Mary Todd Lincoln
Mary Ann Lincoln was the wife of the 16th President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln, and was First Lady of the United States from 1861 to 1865.-Life before the White House:...

 gave Lincoln's favorite walking stick
Walking stick
A walking stick is a device used by many people to facilitate balancing while walking.Walking sticks come in many shapes and sizes, and can be sought by collectors. Some kinds of walking stick may be used by people with disabilities as a crutch...

 to Douglass in appreciation. Lincoln's walking stick still rests in Douglass' house known as Cedar Hill
Frederick Douglass National Historic Site
The Frederick Douglass National Historic Site, administered by the National Park Service, is located at 1411 W St., SE in Anacostia, a neighborhood east of the Anacostia River in Southeast Washington, D.C.. Established in 1988 as a National Historic Site, the site preserves the home and estate of...

.

In his last biography The Life & Times of Frederick Douglass, Douglass referred to Lincoln as America's "greatest President."

Reconstruction era



After the Civil War, Douglass was appointed to several political positions. He served as president of the Reconstruction-era Freedman's Savings Bank
Freedman's Savings Bank
The Freedman's Saving and Trust Company, popularly known as the Freedman's Savings Bank, was a financial organization created by the U.S. government to encourage and guide the economic development of the newly-emancipated African-American communities in the post-Civil War period...

; and as chargé d'affaires for the Dominican Republic. After two years, he resigned from his ambassadorship because of disagreements with U.S. government policy. In 1872, he moved to Washington, D.C., after his house on South Avenue in Rochester, New York burned down; arson was suspected. Also lost was a complete issue of The North Star.

In 1868
United States presidential election, 1868
The United States presidential election of 1868 was the first presidential election to take place after the American Civil War, during the period referred to as Reconstruction...

, Douglass supported the presidential campaign of Ulysses S. Grant
Ulysses S. Grant
Ulysses S. Grant was the 18th President of the United States as well as military commander during the Civil War and post-war Reconstruction periods. Under Grant's command, the Union Army defeated the Confederate military and ended the Confederate States of America...

. President Grant signed into law the Klan Act
Civil Rights Act of 1871
The Civil Rights Act of 1871, , enacted April 20, 1871, is a federal law in force in the United States. The Act was originally enacted a few years after the American Civil War, along with the 1870 Force Act. One of the chief reasons for its passage was to protect southern blacks from the Ku Klux...

 and the second and third Enforcement Acts
Enforcement Acts
The Enforcement Acts in the United States were four acts passed from 1870 to 1871 that were meant to protect rights of all blacks following ratification of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution as part of Reconstruction, which entitled freedmen and all others born in the United...

. Grant used their provisions vigorously, suspending habeas corpus
Habeas corpus
is a writ, or legal action, through which a prisoner can be released from unlawful detention. The remedy can be sought by the prisoner or by another person coming to his aid. Habeas corpus originated in the English legal system, but it is now available in many nations...

in South Carolina and sending troops there and into other states; under his leadership over 5,000 arrests were made and the Ku Klux Klan
Ku Klux Klan
Ku Klux Klan, often abbreviated KKK and informally known as the Klan, is the name of three distinct past and present far-right organizations in the United States, which have advocated extremist reactionary currents such as white supremacy, white nationalism, and anti-immigration, historically...

 received a serious blow. Grant's vigor in disrupting the Klan made him unpopular among many whites, but Frederick Douglass praised him. An associate of Douglass wrote of Grant that African Americans "will ever cherish a grateful remembrance of his name, fame and great services."

In 1872, Douglass became the first African American nominated for Vice President of the United States
Vice President of the United States
The Vice President of the United States is the holder of a public office created by the United States Constitution. The Vice President, together with the President of the United States, is indirectly elected by the people, through the Electoral College, to a four-year term...

, as Victoria Woodhull
Victoria Woodhull
Victoria Claflin Woodhull was an American leader of the woman's suffrage movement, an advocate of free love; together with her sister, the first women to operate a brokerage in Wall Street; the first women to start a weekly newspaper; an activist for women's rights and labor reforms and, in 1872,...

's running mate on the Equal Rights Party
Equal Rights Party (United States)
The Equal Rights Party was the name for several different nineteenth century political parties in the United States.The first party was the Locofocos, during the 1830s and 1840s....

 ticket. He was nominated without his knowledge. During the campaign, he neither campaigned for the ticket nor acknowledged that he had been nominated.

Douglass continued his speaking engagements. On the lecture circuit, he spoke at many colleges around the country during the Reconstruction era, including Bates College
Bates College
Bates College is a highly selective, private liberal arts college located in Lewiston, Maine, in the United States. and was most recently ranked 21st in the nation in the 2011 US News Best Liberal Arts Colleges rankings. The college was founded in 1855 by abolitionists...

 in Lewiston, Maine
Lewiston, Maine
Lewiston is a city in Androscoggin County in Maine, and the second-largest city in the state. The population was 41,592 at the 2010 census. It is one of two principal cities of and included within the Lewiston-Auburn, Maine metropolitan New England city and town area and the Lewiston-Auburn, Maine...

 in 1873. He continued to emphasize the importance of voting rights and exercise of suffrage.
In a speech delivered on November 15, 1867, Douglass said "A man's rights rest in three boxes. The ballot box, jury box and the cartridge box. Let no man be kept from the ballot box because of his color. Let no woman be kept from the ballot box because of her sex".

In 1877, Douglass visited Thomas Auld, who was by then on his deathbed, and the two men reconciled. Douglass had met with Auld's daughter, Amanda Auld Sears, some years prior; she had requested the meeting and had subsequently attended and cheered one of Douglass' speeches. Her father told her she had done well in reaching out to Douglass. The visit appears to have brought closure to Douglass, although he received some criticism for making it.

White insurgents had quickly arisen in the South after the war, organizing first as secret vigilante
Vigilante
A vigilante is a private individual who legally or illegally punishes an alleged lawbreaker, or participates in a group which metes out extralegal punishment to an alleged lawbreaker....

 groups like the Ku Klux Klan
Ku Klux Klan
Ku Klux Klan, often abbreviated KKK and informally known as the Klan, is the name of three distinct past and present far-right organizations in the United States, which have advocated extremist reactionary currents such as white supremacy, white nationalism, and anti-immigration, historically...

. Through the years, armed insurgency took different forms, the last as powerful paramilitary
Paramilitary
A paramilitary is a force whose function and organization are similar to those of a professional military, but which is not considered part of a state's formal armed forces....

 groups such as the White League
White League
The White League was a white paramilitary group started in 1874 that operated to turn Republicans out of office and intimidate freedmen from voting and political organizing. Its first chapter in Grant Parish, Louisiana was made up of many of the Confederate veterans who had participated in the...

 and the Red Shirts during the 1870s in the Deep South. They operated as "the military arm of the Democratic Party", turning out Republican officeholders and disrupting elections. Their power continued to grow in the South; more than 10 years after the end of the war, white Democrats regained political power in every state of the former Confederacy and began to reassert white supremacy. They enforced this by a combination of violence, late 19th century laws imposing segregation
Racial segregation
Racial segregation is the separation of humans into racial groups in daily life. It may apply to activities such as eating in a restaurant, drinking from a water fountain, using a public toilet, attending school, going to the movies, or in the rental or purchase of a home...

 and a concerted effort to disfranchise African Americans. From 1890–1908, white Democrats passed new constitutions and statutes in the South that created requirements for voter registration and voting that effectively disfranchised most blacks and tens of thousands of poor whites. This disfranchisement and segregation were enforced for more than six decades into the 20th century.

Douglass' stump speech for 25 years after the end of the Civil War was to emphasize work to counter the racism that was then prevalent in unions.

Family life


Douglass and Anna
Anna Murray-Douglass
Anna Murray-Douglass was an American abolitionist, member of the underground railroad, and the first wife of American social reformer and statesman Frederick Douglass, from 1838 to her death.-Life:...

 had five children: Rosetta Douglass, Lewis Henry Douglass, Frederick Douglass, Jr., Charles Remond Douglass, and Annie Douglass (died at the age of ten). Charles and Rossetta helped produce his newspapers. Anna Douglass remained a loyal supporter of her husband's public work, even though Douglass' relationships with Julia Griffiths
Julia Griffiths
Julia Griffiths was a British Abolitionist who worked with Frederick Douglass. The two met in [Newcastle-Upon-Tyne]] during Douglass' tour of the British Isles in 1845-47. In 1849, Griffiths joined Douglass Rochester Rochester, and edited, published and promoted many of his works...

 and Ottilie Assing
Ottilie assing
Ottilie Davida Assing was a 19th century German feminist, freethinker, and abolitionist. Born in Hamburg, she was the eldest daughter of a prominent Jewish physician, David Assur, who converted to Christianity upon marriage and changed his name to Assing...

, two women he was professionally involved with, caused recurring speculation and scandals.

In 1877, Douglass bought the family's final home in Washington D.C., on a hill above the Anacostia River
Anacostia River
The Anacostia River is a river in the Mid Atlantic region of the United States. It flows from Prince George's County in Maryland into Washington, D.C., where it joins with the Washington Channel to empty into the Potomac River at Buzzard Point. It is approximately long...

. He and Anna named it Cedar Hill
Frederick Douglass National Historic Site
The Frederick Douglass National Historic Site, administered by the National Park Service, is located at 1411 W St., SE in Anacostia, a neighborhood east of the Anacostia River in Southeast Washington, D.C.. Established in 1988 as a National Historic Site, the site preserves the home and estate of...

(also spelled CedarHill). They expanded the house from 14 to 21 rooms, and included a china closet. One year later, Douglass purchased adjoining lots and expanded the property to 15 acres (61,000 m²). The home has been designated the Frederick Douglass National Historic Site
Frederick Douglass National Historic Site
The Frederick Douglass National Historic Site, administered by the National Park Service, is located at 1411 W St., SE in Anacostia, a neighborhood east of the Anacostia River in Southeast Washington, D.C.. Established in 1988 as a National Historic Site, the site preserves the home and estate of...

.

Anna Murray-Douglass died in 1882, leaving him with a sense of great loss and depression
Depression (mood)
Depression is a state of low mood and aversion to activity that can affect a person's thoughts, behaviour, feelings and physical well-being. Depressed people may feel sad, anxious, empty, hopeless, helpless, worthless, guilty, irritable, or restless...

 for a time. He found new meaning from working with activist Ida B. Wells
Ida B. Wells
Ida Bell Wells-Barnett was an African American journalist, newspaper editor and, with her husband, newspaper owner Ferdinand L. Barnett, an early leader in the civil rights movement. She documented lynching in the United States, showing how it was often a way to control or punish blacks who...

.


In 1884, Douglass married again, to Helen Pitts, a white feminist from Honeoye, New York
Honeoye, New York
Honeoye is a hamlet in the town of Richmond, county of Ontario, New York, 33 miles south of downtown Rochester, New York. The community is at the north end of Honeoye Lake, one of the minor Finger Lakes. It is primarily situated along U.S. Route 20A between Ontario County Roads 33 and 37...

. Pitts was the daughter of Gideon Pitts, Jr., an abolitionist colleague and friend of Douglass. A graduate of Mount Holyoke College
Mount Holyoke College
Mount Holyoke College is a liberal arts college for women in South Hadley, Massachusetts. It was the first member of the Seven Sisters colleges, and served as a model for some of the others...

 (then called Mount Holyoke Female Seminary), she worked on a radical feminist publication named Alpha while living in Washington, D.C. The couple faced a storm of controversy with their marriage, since Pitts was both white and nearly 20 years younger than Douglass. Her family stopped speaking to her; his was bruised, as his children felt his marriage was a repudiation of their mother. But feminist Elizabeth Cady Stanton
Elizabeth Cady Stanton
Elizabeth Cady Stanton was an American social activist, abolitionist, and leading figure of the early woman's movement...

 congratulated the couple. Douglass responded to the criticisms by saying that his first marriage had been to someone the color of his mother, and his second to someone the color of his father. The new couple traveled to England, France, Italy, Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

 and Greece
Greece
Greece , officially the Hellenic Republic , and historically Hellas or the Republic of Greece in English, is a country in southeastern Europe....

 from 1886 to 1887.

After Reconstruction


As white Democrats regained power in the state legislatures of the South after Reconstruction, they began to impose new laws that disfranchised blacks and to create labor and criminal laws limiting their freedom. Many African Americans, called Exodusters, moved to large northern cities and to places like Kansas
Kansas
Kansas is a US state located in the Midwestern United States. It is named after the Kansas River which flows through it, which in turn was named after the Kansa Native American tribe, which inhabited the area. The tribe's name is often said to mean "people of the wind" or "people of the south...

. In the latter case it was to form all-black towns where it was felt they could have a greater level of freedom and autonomy. Douglass spoke out against the movement, urging blacks to stick it out. He had become out of step with his audiences, who condemned and booed him for this position.

In 1877, Douglass was appointed a United States Marshal. In 1881, he was appointed Recorder of Deeds
Recorder of deeds
Recorder of deeds is a government office tasked with maintaining public records and documents, especially records relating to real estate ownership that provide persons other than the owner of a property with real rights over that property.-Background:...

 for the District of Columbia.

In 1888, Douglass spoke at Claflin College
Claflin University
Claflin University is located in Orangeburg, South Carolina, United States. Claflin University was founded in 1869 and is the oldest historically black college or university in the state of South Carolina.-History:...

, a black college in Orangeburg, South Carolina
Orangeburg, South Carolina
Orangeburg, also known as "The Garden City," is the principal city in and the county seat of Orangeburg County, South Carolina, United States. The city is also the fifth oldest city in the state of South Carolina. The city population was 12,765 at the 2000 census, within a Greater Orangeburg...

 and the oldest such institution in the state. He urged his audiences to struggle and protest against slavery.

At the 1888 Republican National Convention
1888 Republican National Convention
-Synopsis:The 1888 Republican National Convention was a presidential nominating convention held at the Auditorium Building in Chicago, Illinois, on June 19-25, 1888. It resulted in the nomination of Benjamin Harrison, a former senator of Indiana, and Levi P. Morton, a former U.S. representative of...

, Douglass became the first African American to receive a vote for President of the United States in a major party
Major party
A major party is a political party that holds substantial influence in a country's politics, standing in contrast to a minor party. It should not be confused with majority party.According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary:...

's roll call vote.

He was appointed minister-resident and consul-general to the Republic of Haiti (1889–1891). In 1892 the Haitian government appointed Douglass as its commissioner to the Chicago
Chicago
Chicago is the largest city in the US state of Illinois. With nearly 2.7 million residents, it is the most populous city in the Midwestern United States and the third most populous in the US, after New York City and Los Angeles...

 World's Columbian Exposition
World's Columbian Exposition
The World's Columbian Exposition was a World's Fair held in Chicago in 1893 to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Christopher Columbus's arrival in the New World in 1492. Chicago bested New York City; Washington, D.C.; and St...

. He spoke for Irish Home Rule and the efforts of leader Charles Stewart Parnell
Charles Stewart Parnell
Charles Stewart Parnell was an Irish landowner, nationalist political leader, land reform agitator, and the founder and leader of the Irish Parliamentary Party...

 in Ireland. He briefly revisited Ireland in 1886.

Also in 1892, Douglass constructed rental housing for blacks, now known as Douglass Place
Douglass Place
Douglass Place is a group of historic rowhouses located at Baltimore, Maryland, United States. Built in 1892, it represents typical "alley houses" of the period in Baltimore, two narrow bays wide, two stories high over a cellar, with shed roofs pitched to the rear...

, in the Fells Point area of Baltimore. The complex was listed on the National Register of Historic Places
National Register of Historic Places
The National Register of Historic Places is the United States government's official list of districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects deemed worthy of preservation...

 in 2003.

Death



On February 20, 1895, Douglass attended a meeting of the National Council of Women in Washington, D.C. During that meeting, he was brought to the platform and given a standing ovation by the audience. Shortly after he returned home, Frederick Douglass died of a massive heart attack
Myocardial infarction
Myocardial infarction or acute myocardial infarction , commonly known as a heart attack, results from the interruption of blood supply to a part of the heart, causing heart cells to die...

 or stroke
Stroke
A stroke, previously known medically as a cerebrovascular accident , is the rapidly developing loss of brain function due to disturbance in the blood supply to the brain. This can be due to ischemia caused by blockage , or a hemorrhage...

 in Washington, D.C. His funeral was held at the Metropolitan African Methodist Episcopal Church
Metropolitan African Methodist Episcopal Church
Metropolitan African Methodist Episcopal Church is a historic church located at 1518 M Street, N.W., in downtown Washington, D.C....

 where thousands passed by his coffin paying tribute. He was buried in Mount Hope Cemetery
Mount Hope Cemetery, Rochester
Mount Hope Cemetery in Rochester, New York, founded in 1838, is the United States' first municipal rural cemetery. Situated on 196 acres of land adjacent to the University of Rochester on Mount Hope Avenue, the cemetery is the permanent resting place of over 350,000 people...

 in Rochester, New York
Rochester, New York
Rochester is a city in Monroe County, New York, south of Lake Ontario in the United States. Known as The World's Image Centre, it was also once known as The Flour City, and more recently as The Flower City...

.

Legacy and honors

  • In 1921, members of the Alpha Phi Alpha
    Alpha Phi Alpha
    Alpha Phi Alpha is the first Inter-Collegiate Black Greek Letter fraternity. It was founded on December 4, 1906 at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. Its founders are known as the "Seven Jewels". Alpha Phi Alpha developed a model that was used by the many Black Greek Letter Organizations ...

     fraternity (the first African-American intercollegiate fraternity) designated Frederick Douglass as an honorary member. Douglass is the only man to receive an honorary membership posthumously.

  • The Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge
    Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge
    The Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge, otherwise known as the South Capitol Street Bridge, carries South Capitol Street over the Anacostia River in Washington, D.C. It was constructed in 1950 and named after abolitionist Frederick Douglass...

    , sometimes referred to as the South Capitol Street Bridge, just south of the US Capitol in Washington DC, was built in 1950 and named in his honor.

  • In 1962, his home in Anacostia
    Anacostia
    Anacostia is a historic neighborhood in Washington, D.C. Its historic downtown is located at the intersection of Good Hope Road and Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue It is the most famous neighborhood in the Southeast quadrant of Washington, located east of the Anacostia River, after which the...

     (Washington, DC) became part of the National Park System, and in 1988 was designated the Frederick Douglass National Historic Site
    Frederick Douglass National Historic Site
    The Frederick Douglass National Historic Site, administered by the National Park Service, is located at 1411 W St., SE in Anacostia, a neighborhood east of the Anacostia River in Southeast Washington, D.C.. Established in 1988 as a National Historic Site, the site preserves the home and estate of...

    .

  • In 1965, the U.S. Postal Service
    United States Postal Service
    The United States Postal Service is an independent agency of the United States government responsible for providing postal service in the United States...

     honored Douglass with a stamp in the Prominent Americans series
    Prominent Americans series
    The Prominent Americans series is a set of definitive stamps issued by the United States Post Office Department between 1965 and 1978....

    .

  • In 1999, Yale University
    Yale University
    Yale University is a private, Ivy League university located in New Haven, Connecticut, United States. Founded in 1701 in the Colony of Connecticut, the university is the third-oldest institution of higher education in the United States...

     established the Frederick Douglass Book Prize for works in the history of slavery and abolition, in his honor. The annual $25,000 prize is administered by the Gilder Lehrman Institute for American History and the Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition
    Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition
    The Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance and Abolition is part of The Whitney and Betty MacMillan Center for International and Area Studies at Yale University. The center was founded in November 1998 by David Brion Davis and funded by Richard Gilder and Lewis Lehrman and the...

     at Yale.

  • In 2002, scholar Molefi Kete Asante
    Molefi Kete Asante
    Molefi Kete Asante is an African-American scholar, historian, and philosopher. He is a leading figure in the fields of African American studies, African Studies and Communication Studies...

     named Frederick Douglass to his list of 100 Greatest African Americans
    100 Greatest African Americans
    100 Greatest African Americans is a biographical dictionary of the one hundred historically greatest African Americans , as assessed by Molefi Kete Asante in 2002.-Criteria:...

    .

  • In 2003, Douglass Place
    Douglass Place
    Douglass Place is a group of historic rowhouses located at Baltimore, Maryland, United States. Built in 1892, it represents typical "alley houses" of the period in Baltimore, two narrow bays wide, two stories high over a cellar, with shed roofs pitched to the rear...

    , the rental housing units that Douglass built in Baltimore in 1892 for blacks, was listed on the National Register of Historic Places
    National Register of Historic Places
    The National Register of Historic Places is the United States government's official list of districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects deemed worthy of preservation...

    .

  • Douglass is honored with a feast day on the liturgical calendar of the Episcopal Church (USA)
    Calendar of saints (Episcopal Church in the United States of America)
    The veneration of saints in the Episcopal Church is a continuation of an ancient tradition from the early Church which honors important people of the Christian faith. The usage of the term "saint" is similar to Roman Catholic and Orthodox traditions. Those in the Anglo-Catholic tradition may...

     on February 20.

  • In 2007, the former Troup-Howell bridge which carried Interstate 490 over the Genesee River was redesigned and renamed the Frederick Douglass-Susan B. Anthony Memorial Bridge
    Frederick Douglass-Susan B. Anthony Memorial Bridge
    The Frederick Douglass – Susan B. Anthony Memorial Bridge is a triple steel arch bridge carrying Interstate 490 over the Genesee River and New York State Route 383 in downtown Rochester, New York...

    .

  • In 2010, a statue (by Gabriel Koren) and memorial (designed by Algernon Miller) of Douglass were unveiled at Frederick Douglass Circle
    Frederick Douglass Circle
    Frederick Douglass Circle is a traffic circle located at the Northwest corner of Central Park at the foot of Frederick Douglass Boulevard and of Cathedral Parkway in the New York City borough of Manhattan...

     at the northwest corner of Central Park
    Central Park
    Central Park is a public park in the center of Manhattan in New York City, United States. The park initially opened in 1857, on of city-owned land. In 1858, Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux won a design competition to improve and expand the park with a plan they entitled the Greensward Plan...

     in New York City
    New York City
    New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

    .

  • On June 12, 2011, Talbot County, Maryland, honored Douglass by installing a seven-foot bronze statue of Douglass on the lawn of the county courthouse in Easton, Maryland
    Easton, Maryland
    Easton, founded 1710, is a town within the Easton District of Talbot County, Maryland, United States. The population was 11,708 at the 2000 census, and 14,677 according to current July 2008 census estimates. It is the county seat of Talbot County. The primary ZIP Code is 21601, and the...

    .

  • Many public schools have been named in his honor.

Works



Writings

  • A Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave (1845)
  • "The Heroic Slave
    The Heroic Slave
    The Heroic Slave, a Thrilling Narrative of the Adventures of Madison Washington, in Pursuit of Liberty is a short piece of fiction written by famous abolitionist Frederick Douglass. When the Rochester Ladies' Anti Slavery Society asked Douglass for a short story to go in their collection,...

    ". Autographs for Freedom. Ed. Julia Griffiths, Boston: Jewett and Company, 1853. pp. 174–239.
  • My Bondage and My Freedom
    My Bondage and My Freedom
    My Bondage and My Freedom is an autobiographical slave narrative written by Frederick Douglass and published in 1855. It is the second of three autobiographies written by Douglass, and is mainly an expansion of his first , discussing in greater detail his transition from bondage to liberty...

    (1855)
  • Life and Times of Frederick Douglass
    Life and Times of Frederick Douglass
    Life and Times of Frederick Douglass is Frederick Douglass' third autobiography, published in 1881, revised in 1892. Because of the emancipation of American slaves during and following the American Civil War, Douglas gave more details about his life as a slave and his escape from slavery in this...

    (1881, revised 1892)
  • Douglass founded and edited the abolitionist newspaper The North Star from 1847 to 1851. He merged The North Star with another paper to create the Frederick Douglass' Paper.

Speeches

  • "The Church and Prejudice"
  • Self-Made Men
    Self-Made Men (Frederick Douglass)
    "Self-Made Men" is a famous lecture by Frederick Douglass . In this speech, which was first delivered in 1859, he gives his own definition of the self-made man and explains what he thinks are the means to become such a man.-The Concept:...

  • "Speech at National Hall, Philadelphia July 6, 1863 for the Promotion of Colored Enlistments"
  • "What to a slave is the 4th of July?"

Cultural representation

  • The 1989 film Glory featured Frederick Douglass as a friend of Francis George Shaw. He was played by Raymond St. Jacques
    Raymond St. Jacques
    Raymond St. Jacques was an American actor.-Career:St. Jacques was born James Arthur Johnson in Hartford, Connecticut, the son of Vivienne Johnson, a medical technician...

    .
  • Douglass is the protagonist of the novel Riversmeet (Richard Bradbury, Muswell Press, 2007), a fictionalized account of his 1845 speaking tour of the British Isles.
  • The 2004 mockumentary
    Mockumentary
    A mockumentary , is a type of film or television show in which fictitious events are presented in documentary format. These productions are often used to analyze or comment on current events and issues by using a fictitious setting, or to parody the documentary form itself...

     film, an alternative history called C.S.A.: The Confederate States of America
    C.S.A.: The Confederate States of America
    C.S.A.: The Confederate States of America is a 2004 mockumentary directed by Kevin Willmott. It is a fictional "tongue-in-cheek" account of an alternate history, in which the Confederates won the American Civil War, establishing the new Confederate States of America...

    , featured the figure of Douglass.
  • The 2008 documentary film called Frederick Douglass and the White Negro
    Frederick Douglass and the White Negro
    Frederick Douglass and the White Negro is a documentary film originally released in 2008 .- Synopsis :...

    tells the story of Frederick Douglass in Ireland and the relationship between African Americans and Irish Americans during the American Civil War
    American Civil War
    The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

    .
  • Frederick Douglass is a major character in the alternate history novel How Few Remain
    How Few Remain
    How Few Remain is a 1997 alternate history novel by Harry Turtledove. It is the first part of the Southern Victory Series saga, which depicts a world in which the Confederacy won the American Civil War. The book received the Sidewise Award for Alternate History in 1997, and was also nominated for...

    by Harry Turtledove
    Harry Turtledove
    Harry Norman Turtledove is an American novelist, who has produced works in several genres including alternate history, historical fiction, fantasy and science fiction.- Life :...

    .
  • Frederick Douglass appears in Flashman and the Angel of the Lord
    Flashman and the Angel of the Lord
    Flashman and the Angel of the Lord is a 1994 novel by George MacDonald Fraser. It is the tenth of the Flashman novels.-Plot introduction:Presented within the frame of the supposedly discovered historical Flashman Papers, this book describes the bully Flashman from Tom Brown's Schooldays...

    ,
    by George MacDonald Fraser
    George MacDonald Fraser
    George MacDonald Fraser, OBE was an English-born author of Scottish descent, who wrote both historical novels and non-fiction books, as well as several screenplays.-Early life and military career:...

    .
  • Frederick Douglass appears as a Great Humanitarian
    Humanitarianism
    In its most general form, humanitarianism is an ethic of kindness, benevolence and sympathy extended universally and impartially to all human beings. Humanitarianism has been an evolving concept historically but universality is a common element in its evolution...

     in the 2008 strategy video game Civilization Revolution
    Civilization Revolution
    Civilization Revolution is a 2008 iteration of Civilization developed by Firaxis with Sid Meier as designer for the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Nintendo DS, and iOS. A Wii version was originally expected but was put on indefinite hold...

    .
  • Douglass, his wife, and his mistress, Ottilie Assing
    Ottilie assing
    Ottilie Davida Assing was a 19th century German feminist, freethinker, and abolitionist. Born in Hamburg, she was the eldest daughter of a prominent Jewish physician, David Assur, who converted to Christianity upon marriage and changed his name to Assing...

    , are the main characters in Jewell Parker Rhodes
    Jewell Parker Rhodes
    Jewell Parker Rhodes is an American novelist.Rhodes is professor of Creative Writing and American Literature and former Director of the Master of Fine Arts Program in Creative Writing at Arizona State University. Rhodes is the Artistic Director for Global Engagement and the Piper Endowed Chair of...

    ' Douglass' Women, a novel (New York: Atria Books, 2002).

See also


  • African-American literature
  • Frederick Douglass and the White Negro
    Frederick Douglass and the White Negro
    Frederick Douglass and the White Negro is a documentary film originally released in 2008 .- Synopsis :...

  • List of African-American abolitionists
  • Slave narrative
    Slave narrative
    The slave narrative is a literary form which grew out of the written accounts of enslaved Africans in Britain and its colonies, including the later United States, Canada and Caribbean nations...

  • The Columbian Orator
    The Columbian Orator
    First appearing in 1797, The Columbian Orator, a collection of political essays, poems, and dialogues, was widely used in American schoolrooms in the first quarter of the nineteenth century to teach reading and speaking. Many of the speeches included in the anthology celebrated "republican" virtues...

  • U.S. Constitution, defender of the Constitution

Further reading


Scholarship
  • Gates, Jr., Henry Louis
    Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
    Henry Louis “Skip” Gates, Jr., is an American literary critic, educator, scholar, writer, editor, and public intellectual. He was the first African American to receive the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Fellowship. He has received numerous honorary degrees and awards for his teaching, research, and...

    , ed. Frederick Douglass, Autobiography (Library of America
    Library of America
    The Library of America is a nonprofit publisher of classic American literature.- Overview and history :Founded in 1979 with seed money from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Ford Foundation, the LoA has published over 200 volumes by a wide range of authors from Mark Twain to Philip...

    , 1994) ISBN 978-0-940450-79-0
  • Foner, Philip Sheldon
    Philip Foner
    Philip S. Foner was an American Marxist labor historian and teacher. The author and editor of more than 100 books, the prolific Foner wrote extensively on what were at the time academically unpopular themes, such as the role of radicals, blacks, and women in American history...

    . The Life and Writings of Frederick Douglass. New York: International Publishers, 1950.
  • Houston A. Baker, Jr., Introduction, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, Penguin, 1986 edition.
  • Huggins, Nathan Irvin
    Nathan Huggins
    Nathan Irvin Huggins a distinguished American historian, author and educator. As a leading scholar in the field of African-American studies, he was W. E. B. Du Bois Professor of History and of Afro-American Studies at Harvard University as well as director of the W. E. B. Du Bois Institute for...

    , and Oscar Handlin. Slave and Citizen: The Life of Frederick Douglass. Library of American Biography. Boston: Little, Brown, 1980; Longman (1997). ISBN 0-673-39342-9
  • Lampe, Gregory P. Frederick Douglass: Freedom's Voice,. Rhetoric and Public Affairs Series. East Lansing: Michigan State University Press, 1998. ISBN-X (alk. paper) ISBN (pbk. alk. paper) (on his oratory)
  • Levine, Robert S. Martin Delany, Frederick Douglass, and the Politics of Representative Identity. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1997. ISBN (alk. paper). ISBN (pbk.: alk. paper) (cultural history)
  • McFeely, William S.
    William S. McFeely
    William S. McFeely was a professor of history before his retirement in 1997.He received his B.A. from Amherst College in 1952, and Ph.D. in American Studies from Yale University in 1966. He studied there with, among others, C. Vann Woodward, whose book "The Strange Career of Jim Crow" was a staple...

     Frederick Douglass. New York: Norton, 1991. ISBN 0-393-31376-X
  • McMillen, Sally Gregory. Seneca Falls and the origins of the women's rights movement. Oxford University Press, 2008. ISBN 0-19-518265-0
  • Oakes, James. The Radical and the Republican: Frederick Douglass, Abraham Lincoln, and the Triumph of Antislavery Politics. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, Inc. 2007. ISBN 0-393-06194-9
  • Quarles, Benjamin. Frederick Douglass. Washington: Associated Publishers, 1948.
  • Stanton, Elizabeth Cady; edited by Theodore Stanton and Harriot Stanton Blatch. Elizabeth Cady Stanton, As Revealed in Her Letters, Diary and Reminiscences, Harper & Brothers, 1922.
  • Webber, Thomas, Deep Like Rivers: Education in the Slave Quarter Community 1831–1865. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, Inc. (1978).
  • Woodson, C.G., The Education of the Negro Prior to 1861: A History of the Education of the Colored People of the United States from the Beginning of Slavery to the Civil War. New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, (1915); Indy Publ. (2005) ISBN 1-4219-2670-9


For young readers
  • Miller, William. Frederick Douglass: The Last Day of Slavery. Illus. by Cedric Lucas. Lee & Low Books, 1995. ISBN 1-880000-42-3
  • Weidt, Maryann N. Voice of Freedom: a Story about Frederick Douglass. Illus. by Jeni Reeves. Lerner Publications, (2001). ISBN 1-57505-553-8


Documentary films
  • Frederick Douglass and the White Negro
    Frederick Douglass and the White Negro
    Frederick Douglass and the White Negro is a documentary film originally released in 2008 .- Synopsis :...

    [videorecording] / Writer/Director John J Doherty, produced by Camel Productions, Ireland. Irish Film Board/TG4/BCI.; 2008
  • Frederick Douglass [videorecording] / produced by Greystone Communications, Inc. for A&E Network ; executive producers, Craig Haffner and Donna E. Lusitana.; 1997
  • Frederick Douglass: When the Lion Wrote History [videorecording] / a co-production of ROJA Productions and WETA-TV.
  • Frederick Douglass, Abolitionist Editor [videorecording]/a production of Schlessinger Video Productions.
  • Race to Freedom [videorecording] : the story of the underground railroad / an Atlantis

External links



Douglass sources online

Resource Guides

Biographical information
Memorials to Frederick Douglass
  • Frederick Douglass National Historic Site The Washington, DC home of Frederick Douglass
  • Frederick Douglass Gardens at Cedar Hill Frederick Douglass Gardens
  • Frederick Douglass Circle in Harlem overlooking Central Park
    Central Park
    Central Park is a public park in the center of Manhattan in New York City, United States. The park initially opened in 1857, on of city-owned land. In 1858, Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux won a design competition to improve and expand the park with a plan they entitled the Greensward Plan...

     has a statue of Frederick Douglass. North of this point, 8th Avenue is referred to as Frederick Douglass Boulevard
  • The Frederick Douglass Prize A national book prize
  • Lewis N. Douglas as a Sergeant Major
    Sergeant Major
    Sergeants major is a senior non-commissioned rank or appointment in many militaries around the world. In Commonwealth countries, Sergeants Major are usually appointments held by senior non-commissioned officers or warrant officers...

     in the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry
    54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry
    The 54th Regiment Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry was an infantry regiment that saw extensive service in the Union Army during the American Civil War. The regiment was one of the first official black units in the United States during the Civil War...