Posts Tagged Baltimore Mayor

Frederick Douglass Bicentennial Banners throughout Fell’s Point; Greedy Reads bookstore at corner of South Ann & Aliceanna Streets maintains centuries-old tradition of radical booksellers

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Frederick Douglass Bicentennial Banner on Thames Street in Historic Fell’s Point, Baltimore.

Throughout stone streets and corners a juvenile Frederick Bailey hit running up against and with the Point Boys and Town Boys of 1820s and 1830s Baltimore dozens of commemorative banners affix light poles recognizing the bicentennial birth year of a local legend known throughout all four corners of the Earth.

Baltimore City Mayor Catherine Pugh and partnering organizations Living Classrooms at the Frederick Douglass-Isaac Myers Museum Maritime Museum and Park, Society for the Preservation of Federal Hill and Fell’s Point, Crossroads School and Morgan State Professor Dale Green of the Maryland Commission on African American History and Culture must be applauded and acknowledged for uplifting and elevating Dr. Frederick (Bailey) Douglass in such a proper and public way.

In the full spirit of celebration of Dr. Douglass we must also acknowledge his emergence as a lifelong bibliophile began during his time in Fell’s Point.

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Looking out the window of Greedy Reads bookstore at corner of South Ann & Aliceanna Streets.

Parlaying fifty cents earned from “blacking boots for some gentlemen” a defiant adolescent Frederick Bailey purchased The Colombian Orator from radical bookseller Nathaniel Knight’s shop at 28 Thames Street.

During our flâneur through Fell’s Point yesterday we stopped by Greedy Reeds, Fell’s Point only independent book store, at the corner of South Ann and Aliceanna Streets, a tilt Frederick Bailey passed going to and fro.

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Radical bookselling tradition still alive in Fell’s Point at Greedy Reads.

Julia, the proprietress of Greedy Reads, is a radical bookseller, keeping a local tradition alive that goes back centuries.

We thank all in Fell’s Point for elevating the history and the neighborhood.

We hope leaders within Washington City and the greater Old Anacostia neighborhood can follow the lead of our friends in Easton, Maryland in Talbot County and Fell’s Point by installing bicentennial banners of our own.

It is the least Washington City and Old Anacostia can do to show our respect and appreciation for all Dr. Douglass did for the neighborhood and the city and continues to do with the presence of his benevolent spirit.

JM

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Frederick Douglass Bicentennial Banners in Fells Point; program Thursday, May 24 @ 1:00 pm at Frederick Douglass-Isaac Myers Maritime Park and Museum (1417 Thames St, Baltimore, MD 21231)

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Looking down Thames Street. Photo by Preservation Society of Federal Hill and Fell’s Point

On Thursday, May 24th an event organized by Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh’s office and the Preservation Society of Federal Hill and Fell’s Point will officially announce the installation of Frederick Douglass Bicentennial Banners throughout the Fells Point neighborhood in Baltimore, Maryland.

Historic Fells Point is where a young Frederick Bailey ran with the “Point Boys,” purchased The Colombian Orator from radical bookseller Nathaniel Knight, worked the docks, attended church, possibly taught nigh school and fled from slavery.

The program begins at 1:00 pm at the

Frederick Douglass-Isaac Myers Maritime Park and Museum.

1417 Thames St, Baltimore, MD 21231 / (410) 685-0295

Hope to see you there!

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General Samuel Smith, Mayor of Baltimore during Frederick Bailey’s flight to freedom, served as Vice President of founding of Maryland Colonization Society

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“General Samuel Smith,” oil on canvas, by the Rembrandt Peale. Maryland Historical Society.

Coming up running corners, alleys and the market square with the Point Boys, by the fall of 1838 the intellectually defiant, rebellious spirit of Frederick Bailey, known to leaders in both the white and free black community, got ghost.

On the 3rd of September 1838 General Samuel Smith, a veteran of the War of 1812, United States Congress and United States Senate, served as Mayor of Baltimore City.

In studying Douglass few biographers get into the specifics of his time in Fells Point. In recent years Dr. Ed Papenfuse and Prof. Lawrence Jackson have begun to uplift the scholarship.

Dickson Preston’s groundbreaking and influential Young Frederick Douglass is the only book which gives substantial attention to Fells Point. McFeely captures an especially interesting story from Fells Point folklore that survived nearly 150 years.

Has any Douglass scholar looked into the political climate of Baltimore City from 1820 until 1840?

I do not know but I can’t recall ever reading about the Mayor and City Council in existing Douglass Studies literature — specifically General Smith who in 1827 served as a founding Vice President to the Maryland Colonization Society, an auxiliary of the American Colonization Society.

While living in Fells Point the teenage Bailey had a connection with a Justice of the Peace who also served as an elector in municipal and statewide elections.

I won’t get into speculative and vacuous psychological scholarship to explain that this association Bailey had was important.

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