Frederick Douglass on Baltimore

September 27, 2002

"Going to live at Baltimore laid the foundation, and opened the gateway, to all my subsequent prosperity."

" ... I had something of the feeling about Baltimore that is expressed in the proverb, that `being hanged in England is preferable to dying a natural death in Ireland.' I had the strongest desire to see Baltimore."

"I had resided but a short time in Baltimore before I observed a marked difference in the treatment of slaves. ... A city slave is almost a freeman, compared with a slave on the plantation. He is much better fed and clothed, and enjoys privileges altogether unknown to the slave on the plantation."

"Mrs. Lucretia had told me I must get all the dead skin off my feet and knees before I could go to Baltimore; for the people in Baltimore were very cleanly, and would laugh at me if I looked dirty."

- From Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave, first published in Boston in 1845 by The Anti-Slavery Office

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