UPDATE: Appreciating Frederick Douglass -- the father of the civil rights movement
UPDATE: This post contains additional resources and CORRECTS the street where the national historic site is located.
I have longed to learn more about the great orator Frederick Douglass and that wish recently came true.
On Feb. 20, 2011, I toured the national historic site in Washington, D.C. where Douglass (1818 - 2.20.1895), a former slave and abolitionist, once lived.
In 1877, Douglass brought his wife Anna Murray to an 1850s brick house dubbed Cedar Hill. My tour of the lovely edifice was under the direction of the National Park Service. A riveting 18-minute video, featuring excellent actors, launched the tour.
The national historic site includes a visitor's center, where I saw the video. Our guide, National Park Service Interpretive Ranger Kamal McClarin, led us through the house, which is inviting and charming.
Tips if you go:
Take a cab or either drive to the site, located at 1411 W Street SE, Washington, D.C. 20020; 202.426.5961
Get there early to view the video and see it twice, if time permits
Bring good walking shoes
Take extra batteries for your camera
Frederick Douglass National Historic Site, http://www.nps.gov/frdo/index.htm
Activities for children: http://www.nps.gov/frdo/forkids/index.htm
Friends of Frederick Douglass Blog: http://tinyurl.com/4exbjkw
Video from C-SPAN's "American History TV" show of National Park Service Interpretive Ranger McClarin's tour of Frederick Douglass's last home, http://cs.pn/161IQJn
Introduction to the Index to the Frederick Douglass Papers at the Library of Congress: http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/doughtml/dougprov.html
About the Author:
Regina L. Burns, M.A., Project+, is an award-winning multimedia editor and journalist, specializing in Black history and African American stories at Harvest Reapers Communications. Her work has been published in Texas Highways magazine, WFAA-TV, The Dallas Morning News, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram as well as The Commercial Appeal, the Tri-State Defender and The Flyer, among others.