Magazine article Newsweek

Frederick Douglass Home: Cedar Hill and the Anacostia sage(Washington, D.C.)(Special Advertising Section: The National Park System)

Magazine article Newsweek

Frederick Douglass Home: Cedar Hill and the Anacostia sage(Washington, D.C.)(Special Advertising Section: The National Park System)

Article excerpt

Cedar Hill and the Anacostia Sage

The unpretentious yet dominating home, on the heights above the Anacostia River, provided its owner with a commanding view of the U.S. Capitol and the city of Washington. Its owner was a remarkable self-taught man who became a commanding figure in American history.

Slave, abolitionist, human rights activist, linguist, diplomat, author, editor, orator--Frederick Douglass was all these things, a role model for all people, for all times.

"To those who have suffered in slavery, I can say, I, too, have suffered...to those who have battled for liberty, brotherhood and citizenship, I can say, I, too, have battled."

His home, "Cedar Hill," is one of our most revered landmarks, and should not be missed on any trip to Washington, D.C. It's up from the Mall, where the monuments, memorials, and museums adorn the nation's "front yard," and a bit beyond the capitol and congressional buildings: 1411 W Street, S.E.

The 8.5-acre home is now a national historic site, honoring this leading African-American spokesman of the 19th century. Douglass lived here for 22 years. He was 77 when he died at "Cedar Hill" in 1895.

The National Park Service's Robert Stanton, an emerging Douglass scholar who has long gained inspiration from Douglass' speeches and writings, says of Cedar Hill, "It is inseparable from the man, who may be gone, but whose presence is still sensed, felt in the rooms and on the grounds. You know that this place belonged to a person who mattered, who counted, who stood for something very important. His vision is preserved and perpetuated here."

His birth home of two rooms it, Maryland's Talbot County in 1818 had to accommodate all his cousins and his grandparents, too. He did not know his father; his mother had to leave when he was an infant. …

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