Frederick Douglass in Britain

Douglass, circa 1847-52

Did you know that Frederick Douglass spent nearly two years in the British Isles delivering anti-slavery lectures?  Hannah-Rose Murray, a public historian trained at Royal Holloway, has assembled a very impressive website chronicling Douglass’s 1845-47 journey to Great Britain.  The site includes, among other things, a map of Douglass’s speaking locations, local reaction to his lectures, and some useful teaching resources.

Learn more about this project by reading Murray’s post at History@Work.  Here is a taste:

I began researching his British trip during my Masters degree, but it has now grown into a fully-fledged project! I designed some teaching resources and then a website to host them, and I’ve been adding to it ever since. Contemporary newspapers are at the heart of my research: they printed Douglass’s speeches and fascinating letters from the public praising or condemning his harsh language against slavery. Ultimately, the aim of my research is to raise awareness of Douglass’s visit to Britain, and hopefully start an international conversation about the impact of his trip.

One thought on “Frederick Douglass in Britain

  1. Using the site's search box doesn't turn up the word “Presbyterian,” and “Cox” turns up only on the subject of temperance. Douglass hit hard:

    When the Presbyterian assembly was called on a few years ago, to say that slavery is a sin against God, it was voted by the Assembly, that it is inexpedient to take action on the subject, and as soon as that was done, Dr. Cox jumped up and clapped his hands, and thanked God that their Vesuvius was capped; and having got rid of slavery, they all engaged in prayer; while the poor heart-broken slave was lifting up his hands to them, and clanking his chains and imploring them in the name of God to aid him; and their reply was, it is inexpedient for us to do so: and Dr. Cox clapped his hands and thanked God that the Vesuvius was capped; that is, that the question of slavery is got rid of.


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