Douglass has new home in Washington


Frederick Douglass is the fourth black American with a statue in the Capitol’s Emancipation Hall. (Linda Davidson/The Washington Post)
June 19, 2013

There’s a new face in the Capitol building in Washington. It’s Frederick Douglass, a speaker, writer and former slave who lived in the 19th century.

A seven-foot-tall bronze statue of Douglass was unveiled Wednesday in the Capitol’s Emancipation Hall.

The statue joins sculpted tributes to fellow black Americans Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King Jr. and Sojourner Truth.

Douglass was born a slave in 1818 in Talbot County, Maryland. He was sent to Baltimore, and at age 20, he escaped to Massachusetts, where slavery was illegal.

Douglass became an abolitionist, someone who supported ending slavery throughout the United States. He advised President Abraham Lincoln and was a voice for women’s rights as well as the rights of black Americans.

Vice President Biden and John Boehner, speaker of the House of Representatives, spoke at the statue’s dedication. Boehner called Douglass “one of the greatest Americans and voices for freedom who ever lived.”

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