Guest post on DCist: “Though Douglass Statue is Moving to U.S. Capitol, His Legacy on D.C. Suffrage Should Not Be Forgotten”

Courtesy of Washingtoniana Division, DC Public Library

Were Frederick Douglass alive today he would not sit back quietly and hold his tongue.

President Obama’s signing into law House Resolution 6336, giving the Joint Committee on the Library two years to move the bronze statue of Douglass now in the lobby of One Judiciary Square to the United States Capitol’s Emancipation Hall, would not impress the Lion of Anacostia.

During his remarkable life Douglass championed many public and private causes—the abolition of slavery, women’s rights, temperance, classical and technical education for freedmen and their sons and daughters, and Irish Independence, to name a few—but his most enduring advocacy on behalf of D.C. and Washingtonians is all but forgotten.

In the recent burst of press releases and stories about the statue’s move, Douglass’ national legacy has been invoked, but not his local one. Nowhere will you find mention of Douglass’ activism with the Citizens’ District Suffrage Petition Association, a late 19th-century organization whose work remains unfulfilled.

Read the full post on DCist.com HERE.

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