Archive for February, 2019

“The Lost History of Frederick (Bailey) Douglass in Baltimore” @ Enoch Pratt Central Library –> Thurs, February 28, 2019 at 6:30 PM

IMG_7730The Lost History of Frederick (Bailey) Douglass in Baltimore

John Muller, author of Frederick Douglass in Washington, D.C.: The Lion of Anacostia and Mark Twain in Washington, D.C.: The Adventures of a Capital Correspondent, will present “The Lost History of Frederick (Bailey) Douglass in Baltimore” using newly discovered information found in the Baltimore City Archives, Maryland Historical Society, Enoch Pratt Free Library, and private archives. Muller has presented widely throughout the DC-Baltimore metropolitan area at venues including the Library of Congress, Newseum, Politics and Prose, American Library in Paris and local universities. He is currently working on a book about the lost history of Frederick Douglass on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.

John Muller will be in conversation
with Dr. Ida E. Jones, Morgan State University Archivist.

Writers LIVE programs are supported in part by a bequest from The Miss Howard Hubbard Adult Programming Fund. 

 Thursday, February 28 at 6:30pm

 Central Library, African American Department
400 Cathedral Street
Baltimore, MD 21201


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Thank you Frederick Historic Sites Consortium and Maryland Room of the Frederick County Public Library!

Image may contain: 1 person, sitting and indoorThis past weekend I had the opportunity to present “Frederick Douglass in Western Maryland” at the Master Docent Series Workshop 2019 held in Frederick City, Maryland at the Delaplaine Arts Center.

A hundred people or so squeezed into the impressive space to hear from a series of wonderful presentations focusing on the history of Frederick County and surrounding communities.

Many in the crowd were moved by a local documentary on Frederick’s African-American community that included an interview with a sharp 105-year old woman who recalled days gone post. A local “roads scholars” presented his documentary work photographing and researching more than 30 extant historic school houses in Frederick County and a local railway scholar presented on intra-community streetcars which connected more exurban and rural communities to the market places of Frederick and Hagerstown.

Image may contain: 1 personMany thanks to Mary Mannix and Carolyn Magura of the Maryland Room of the Frederick County Public Library for sharing their research expertise as super librarians and kind invitation to present.

Look forward to connecting more with Frederick City in the near future.



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Upcoming Walking Tours of Frederick Douglass’ Old Anacostia (March 2, 9 and 17, 2019)

John Muller _ walking tour (3)Join local reporter and historian John Muller on a walk through Old Anacostia, examining the neighborhood through the eyes of residents past and present.

Blending historic research and contemporary Ward 8 politics, our guide will lead the group on a walk through time, exploring our city’s most historic Historic District. Stories of presidents, famed one-time resident Frederick Douglass, 19th-century architecture and neighborhood folklore will be woven throughout.

 –*March 2 @ 9:30 AM–*

–*March 9 @ 9:30 AM –*

–*March 9 @11:30 AM –*

–*March 17 @ 9:30 AM –*

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Video: JHU Professor Martha S. Jones discusses “Birthright Citizens: A History of Race and Rights in Antebellum America” and Editor’s Note


Editor’s Note:

Johns Hopkins University Professor of History Martha S. Jones has been around the corner and across the world uplifting lost history as of late.

In her groundbreaking work, Birthright Citizens: A History of Race and Rights in Antebellum America (Cambridge University Press, 2018), Prof. Jones documents the legal declarations and assertions of citizenship made by the antebellum black community of Baltimore City in radical opposition to the Maryland state legislature supporting African colonization as a matter of long-term public policy.  Colonization was supported with a capital budget.

As a street historian I have picked up old maps of Africa which show “Maryland” as a state or county of Liberia. I eventually learned in 1832 the state of Maryland funded a census of all free black folks in the state to better inform its policy efforts in the colonization of black Marylanders.

The era and epoch of Baltimore community history in which Prof. Jones chronicles is from whence Dr. Frederick (Bailey) Douglass emerges and escapes in September 1838.

I suggest scholars take the lead of Prof. Jones and get to studying and researching. There is much work to be done to correct generations of incomplete scholarship and lies.


P.S. I will be referencing Prof. Jones work on Thursday, February 28, 2019 at the Central Branch of the Enoch Pratt Library in the presentation of “The Lost History of Frederick (Bailey) in Baltimore.” Morgan State University archivist Dr. Ida E. Jones will offer remarks and moderate.

Follow Prof. Jones on her blog:

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Video: UDC Forum: Charles Sumner School Museum and Archives and Director Kimberly Springle

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David Blight honored with Lincoln Prize for his book on Frederick Douglass

David Blight honored with Lincoln Prize for his book on Frederick Douglass

David Blight at a Dec. 2018 event promoting his book “Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom” at Yale.
David Blight at a Dec. 2018 event promoting his book “Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom” at Yale. (Photo credit: Daniel Vieira)


David Blight, the 1954 Professor of American History at Yale, was recently honored with the 2019 Gilder Lehrman Lincoln Prize from Gettysburg College and the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History for his book “Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom.”

A noted Civil War historian, Blight directs the Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition at Yale. Blight’s nearly 900-page “Prophet of Freedom” tackles Frederick Douglass’s complex history and his legacy as an abolitionist. The prizewinning historian’s research for the book spanned nine years.

Blight will be recognized during an event hosted by Gettysburg College and the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History in April. The award includes a $50,000 prize and a bronze replica of Augustus Saint-Gaudens’ life-size bust “Lincoln the Man.”


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Thank you Sumner School Museum and Archives for hosting “Lost History of Frederick Douglass and DC Public Schools”

Image may contain: 1 personThe tradition, legacy and history of DC Public Schools is of national consequence. In the immediate years following the Civil War a citywide public school system was formalized and organized for “colored children.”

Dr. Frederick Douglass and the Douglass Family were steadfast supporters and advocates for the entirety of the school system from its teachers to its students to its administrators to its philanthropic benefactors to its supporters in the US House and US Senate.

Dr. Douglass, a former night school teacher in Baltimore, lectured to support night schools in Washington City. Charles Douglass, the youngest Douglass son, was a night school teacher in Old Barry Farm. Virginia Douglass, wife of Frederick Douglass, Jr., served as a principal in Old Anacostia.

The Douglassess supported DC Public Schools and were thusly integral in elevating DCPS in its importance both locally and nationally to the educational and social uplifting of African-Americans. The first African-American graduate of Harvard, the first four African-American women to obtain a doctorate and Carter G. Woodson are just some of those who either attended or educated within the DC Public School System. Haley George Douglass, the Harvard-educated grandson of Dr. Douglass, taught at Dunbar Senior High School for four decades.

We extend our sincerest appreciation for the work of Director Kimberly Springle of the Charles Sumner School Museum and Archives and for the opportunity to present on a topic of great personal interest.

Editor’s Note:

On the backroads of Sandy Spring are families and tribes who family lore tells of ancestors being taught be Emily Edmonson Johnson, a friend of Dr. Douglass and teacher at Miner Normal School. I attended school with the descendants of those taught by Mrs. E. Edmonson Johnson so therefore it is my obligation to uplift the fallen and lost history.

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