Archive for December 16th, 2018
Democrat & Chronicle: “Two charged with trying to steal Frederick Douglass statue” [December 16, 2018]
One of 13 statues of Frederick Douglass erected to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the historic icon’s birth was damaged during an attempted robbery early Sunday morning, Rochester police said.
John R. Boedicker, 20, of Endicott, and Charles J. Milks, 21, of Kenmore, have both been charged with fourth-degree criminal mischief, a misdemeanor, Rochester Police Investigator Jackie Shuman said.
Officers responded to reports at 12:13 a.m. at 1 Tracy St., site of a seminary where Douglass enrolled his eldest daughter, Rosetta, only to withdraw her after finding she was being placed in segregated classes.
The six-foot seven-inch statues by Rochester artist Olivia Kim are made out of cast epoxy resin and weigh 40 pounds and were placed on sites of significance to Douglass’ years in Rochester. It was installed earlier this year.
Those statues were a part of a project called “Re-Energizing the Legacy of Frederick Douglass,” and in a statement issued Sunday, the project’s leaders Carvin Eison, Bleu Cease and Christine Christopher expressed their disappointment in the vandalism.
“People around the area are devastated to learn the news of the attempted theft and severe damage to the statue of Frederick Douglass last night,” the three said in the statement. “We wish that we could write this off as an immature act of vandalism, but sadly, the witness to the theft reports that hateful racial epithets were used by those responsible. We find that incredibly sad.”
The trio urged community members to see the vandalism as an opportunity to teach others about Douglass’ legacy rather than be angry about the damage. They also said the statue will be replaced as quickly as possible.
“On behalf of the entire Frederick Douglass Bicentennial Committee, we want to say thanks to the witness who quickly called the police,” they said in the statement. “Thanks to the Rochester Police Department for their quick response, and to all those who have reached out with words of support.”
Today Boston celebrates the anniversary of its famous tea party. They are not celebrating in Buckingham Palace.
As a radical patriot Dr. Douglass knew the revolutionary streets of the Puritan City for more than a half-century. When President John Tyler visited Boston speculation circulated that a delegation of abolitionists, including Douglass, planned to meet him and deliver a petition of demands. In 1849 Douglass spoke at Faneuil Hall. Before embarking on his Grand Tour, a group of Bostonians honored Douglass in September 1886.
Did you know in 1873 Dr. Douglass traveled from Washington City to the City on a Hill to celebrate one of the most defining moments of civil disobedience in our history?
CENTENNIAL CELEBRATION. – At Boston, yesterday, the New England Woman’s Tea Party celebrated the one hundredth anniversary of the throwing of tea into Boston harbor. About five thousand persons were present.
Col. T. W. Higgins[on] presided. Wendal [sic] Phillips made the opening address, giving an historical account of the destruction of tear in Boston harbor. Addresses suitable to the occasion were made by Rev. J. Freeman Clarke, Rev. Mr. Bartol, Lucy Stone, Elizabeth K. Curtis, Mary F. Eastma[n], Henry B. Blackwell and others.
Poems were read by Mrs. Julia Ward Howe and Christopher Cranch. Letters from Abby Stuart Phelps, Abby K. Folsom, Ralph Waldo Emerson and others were read. The meeting adjourned after adopting resolution recommending that measures be taken to defeat Mr. Frelinghuysen’s Utah Bill.
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