Knox College Struggle and Progress-African Americans in Knox County, Illinois (Knox College)
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Lecture of Fred. Douglass
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TitleLecture of Fred. Douglass
DescriptionReport in the Galesburg Republican newspaper from Feb. 23, 1870 on speeches given in Galesburg, Illinois, by Frederick Douglass and H. Ford Douglas. The men spoke about the Negro race and on anti-slavery.
Abolition movement
Race discrimination
Subject (LCSH)Galesburg (Ill.) - Newspapers
Named PersonDouglass, Frederick; Douglas, H. Ford;
AuthorGalesburg Semi-Weekly Democrat
Time Period1850s
Date Created (original)February 23, 1859
IdentifierMicroforms Cabinets
CollectionStruggle and Progress-African Americans in Knox County, Illinois (Knox College)
Date Digital2012-10-09
TranscriptLecture of Fred. Douglass.
Dunn's Hall, on Monday evening last, was
crowded to its utmost capacity, and the audi-
ence manifested their appreciation of the
merits of the lecture by frequent and hearty
applause. It was an effort to establish the
unity and brotherhood of the race, in oppo-
sition to the diversity theory, or that which
claims, contrary to the revelations of the
Bible, that mankind have not proceeded from
a common stock. The lecture abounded in
flashes of wit, many of which fairly brought
down the house. As an orator, the black
Douglas is, in our opinion, far superior to
the white one; "the rascal, " sad he, "I
wish he had a different name." The lecturer
endeavored to show that the black race were
capable of improvement, and of the greatest
advances in civilization and learning.
The ancient Egyptians were alluded to,
and testimony brought forward to prove their
identity with the negro family. Several in-
stances of negroes who have made unusual
advances in literature, science and art were
mentioned, and it was said that we should
not compare the most degraded specimens of
the negro with the best specimens of the
whites; to make a fair comparison, the speci-
mens should be taken from among those who
had enjoyed equal advantages. Long cen-
turies of degradation had made the negro
what he is; and the same influences, con-
tinued through a series of ages, would have a
similar effect upon a white man; the lectu-
rer alluded to instances in illustration of his
position. He said that the prejudice which
existed against the negro in this country did
not exist in other countries, either on this
continent, or in the old world. He had
spent two years of real freedom, on the oth
er side of the Ocean, and had not received a
single manifestation of that prejudice against
color which here met him at every turn.
The above is simply a brief sketch of a
very few of the leading ideas of the lecture,
which occupied about an hour and a half,
and maintained its interest to the close.
Last evening a crowded house greeted his
second appearance, and listened to a scath-
ing denunciation of the oppression of his
enslaved countrymen, and of the part which
a large portion of the Christian Church and
many eminent divines have taken on the side
of the oppressor. The lecture failed in giving
full justice to the efforts of a large portion of the
church against the system of slavery. These
efforts were recognized in a measure but not
to that extent which might rightfully be
expected after the withering denunciations of
the opposite course. It is just as important
to applaud the right as to denounce the
An eloquent speech was made by H. Ford
Douglass, in conclusion.
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