Frederick Douglass Comes to Life

July fourth was an exceptional day to visit the Frederick Douglass Historic Home. Located in the Historic Anacostia district, Douglass’ house sits at the top of Cedar Hill, and offers a stunning view of downtown Washington, D.C.

The National Park Service hosted a re-enactment of Frederick Douglass’ famous speech “The Meaning of July 4th for the Negro.” (Check out the full speech, via UrbanFaith).

What I found most powerful was the juxtaposition of Douglass’ “you” versus “I” – signifying the work still needed in bringing all humans equal rights.

The rich inheritance of justice, liberty, prosperity and independence, bequeathed by your fathers, is shared by you, not by me. The sunlight that brought life and healing to you, has brought stripes and death to me. This Fourth [of] July is yours, not mine. You may rejoice, I must mourn.

It was a powerful reminder of those today – in the United States and abroad – who do not enjoy basic freedoms, and the work that is yet to be done.

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About Meg Biallas

Thoughts From A DC Intern Turned DCist. A twenty-something goes beyond traditional tourism to achieve Washingtonian authenticity.
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3 Responses to Frederick Douglass Comes to Life

  1. Jeff Zelaya says:

    Great post Meg!


  2. Gives us white folks a different perspective, doesn’t it Meg? I’ll be sharing on Facebook.


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