brief note on Frederick Douglass & marching bands

Following the United States Civil War Frederick (Bailey) Douglass traveled and spoke throughout descendant communities within the Chesapeake Bay watershed, as well as travelling to the American South, touching down in communities throughout Florida, North Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Arkansas, Alabama, Louisiana and elsewhere.

When arriving in town via the railroad, steamship or on carriage he was often greeted by brass and cornet bands, composed of USCT veterans and their children. This lively Black American musical tradition is maintained today by marching bands of this country’s HBCUs.

For a moment, imagine U.S. Marshal Frederick (Bailey) Douglass walking through Cambridge in Dorchester County, Maryland accompanied by a marching band playing “We Ready.” 


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