Frederick Douglass

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Frederick Douglass

Early LifeFrederick Douglass was born in a slave cabin on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. At the age of six, his grandmother abandoned him on the plantation of his master. Bearing the betrayal and the mournful reality in mind, Douglass self-studied how to read and write. While staying in with master’s relative as a houseboy, he purchased schoolbook and learned how influential and powerful written and spoken words can be. When he returned to his hometown as a field hand, he experienced the horrifying condition of slave life. He got in a fight with a slave breaker Edward Covey and the case ended draw, but the victory was Douglass’s since it raised revolutionary movement amongst people. At the age of twenty, Douglass successfully escaped and formed a family with Anna Murray in New Bedford, Massachusetts on which he started his life as a reformer.

Frederick DouglassEaston, MarylandFeb 1818- Feb 1895

Involved in Reforming as…an abolitionist aiming to abolish slaverya defender of women’s rightsan advocate of equal rights

InterestingsFactsWhile participating in an 1843 lecture tour through the Midwest, Douglass was chased and beaten by an angry mob before being rescued by a local Quaker family.


Solutions1. Published his own newspapers, The North Star (1847), etc… (Frederick Douglass Weekly, Frederick Douglass' Paper, Douglass' Monthly and New National Era)2. Became a lecturer for the Massachusetts Anti-Slavery Society and a colleague of William Lloyd Garrison, and lectured throughout the nation3. Participated in the first women’s rights convention at Seneca Falls (1848)

A drawing illustrating the black man lecturing black men

Life as a ReformerDouglass attended abolitionist meetings and anti-slavery convention. Douglass became a lecturer for the Massachusetts Anti-Slavery Society and this led his life as a publisher. He published his own newspaper, The North Star, participated in the first women’s rights convention at Seneca Falls, and wrote three autobiographies.

Sources"Biography of Frederick Douglass- Champion of Civil and Women's Rights." Biography of Frederick Douglass-Champion of Civil and Women's Rights. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Apr. 2015."Frederick Douglass." Bio. A&E Television Networks, 2015. Web. 21 Apr. 2015."Frederick Douglass Project: In the Classroom: Representing Slavery Packet 3." Frederick Douglass Project. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Apr. 2015."Heroic Exile: The Transatlantic Development of Frederick Douglass 1845 - 1847.", n.d. Web. 21 Apr. 2015."Manuscripts/Mixed Material Page 3 of "Address to the Colored Citizens of the United States"" Page 3 of "Address to the Colored Citizens of the United States" N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Apr. 2015.

Address to the Colored Citizens of the United States“First, we ask them to observe that the Republican party has inscribed over the very gateway of its platform renewed devotion to the rights and liberties of our people in common with all others. It holds to the sovereign right of every lawful citizen, rich or poor, native or foreign born, white or black, to cast one free ballot in all public elections and to have that ballot duly counted. It holds that the free, honest, popular ballot, and the just and equal representation of all the people is the foundation of our Republican Government, and demands effective legislation to secure the integrity and purity of elections which are the fountain of all public authority. In our belief, these are no idle words, They are the utterances of a body of men remarkable for all the equalities that give weight to organized American citizenship.”

Douglass's First Newspaper Published, NORTH STAR, 1847

Frederick Douglass appealing to President Lincoln to enlist Negroes


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