Skip to main content

Front Matter--Acknowledgments--Abbreviations



Series Two: Autobiographical Writings



[Painting or drawing of head and shoulders of Frederick Douglass]

[Signature of Frederick Douglass]

Portrait of a young Fredrick Douglass. (Artist unknown, n.d.)



Series Two: Autobiographical Writings
Volume 1: Narrative

John W. Blassingame,
John R. McKivigan,
and Peter P. Hinks, Editors

Gerald Fulkerson, Textual Editor

James H. Cook, Victoria C. Gruber,
and C. Jane Holtan, Editorial Assistants

Yale University Press New Haven and London


ALD Douglass, Frederick,
E 1817?-1895.
449 The Frederick
.D734 Douglass papers.

Copyright © 1999 by Yale University. All rights reserved. This book may not he reproduced, in whole or in part, including illustrations, in any form (beyond that copying permitted by Sections 107 and 108 of the U.S. Copyright Law and except by reviewers for the public press), without written permission from the publishers.

Set in Times Roman type by The Composing Room of Michigan. Inc. Printed in the United States of America.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Douglass, Frederick, 1818-1895.

The Frederick Douglass papers. Series two. Autobiographical writings / John W. Blassingame, John R. McKivigan. and Peter P. Hinks. editors ; Gerald Fulkerson. textual editor ; James H. Cook, Victoria C. Gruber, and C. Jane Holtan, editorial assistants.

p. cm.
Includes bibliographical references and index.

Contents: v. 1. Narrative

ISBN 0-300-07196-5 (v. 1 : alk. paper)

I. Douglass, Frederick, 1818-1895. 2. Abolitionists—United States—Biography.

3. Afro-American abolitionists—Biography. 4. Antislavery movements— United States.

5. Slaves—Maryland—Social conditions. 6. Plantation life—Maryland—History—19th century. 7. Fugitive slaves—Maryland—Biography. I. Blassingame. John W. 1940- II. McKivigan, John R., 1949- . III. Hinks, Peter P. IV. Title.

E449.D734 1999


[B] 98-26125

A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library.

The paper in this book meets the guidelines for permanence and durability of the Committee on Production Guidelines for Book Longevity of the Council on Library Resources.

10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1


The emblem of the Committee on Scholarly Editions indicates that this volume is based on an examination of all available relevant textual sources, that it is edited according to principles articulated in the volume, that the source texts and the edited text's deviations from them are fully described, that the editorial principles and the text and the apparatus have undergone a peer review, that a rigorous schedule of verification and proofreading was followed to insure a high degree of accuracy in the presentation of the edition, and that the text is accompanied by appropriate textual and other historical contextual information.



Mary F. Berry
Richard J. M. Blackett
David B. Davis
Carl Degler
John Hope Franklin
Robert Hall
Louis R. Harlan
Darlene C. Hine
Howard Lamar
David Montgomery
George Shepperson
Clare Taylor
Howard Temperley
George B. Tindall
C. Vann Woodward



Acknowledgments ix
Abbreviations xi
Introduction to Series Two xiii
Introduction to Volume One xvii
Statement on Editorial Method li
Narrative 3
Textual Introduction 87
Textual Notes 98
List of Emendations 105
Line-End Hyphenation in the Copy-Text 107
Historical Collation 108
Historical Annotation 112
Prefaces and Appendixes to the Later Editions 148
Reader Responses, 1845-49 169
Bibliography of Textual Appendixes 205
Index 207



Publication of the first volume of the Autobiographical Writings Series by the Frederick Douglass Papers marks a landmark in the history of this editorial project. In 1994, the bulk of the project's documents and editorial tools, created during two decades of work at Yale University, was transferred to West Virginia University. At that time, John W. Blassingame, founding editor and guiding spirit of this project since its inception in 1973, turned over the role of principal investigator to John R. McKivigan, who had worked on his staff at Yale from 1979 until joining the faculty at West Virginia University in fall 1989. To ensure continuity in the editorial quality of the Douglass Papers volumes, Blassingame has remained with the project in the new position of General Editor. He consulted closely with McKivigan both in devising the editorial procedures and in examining the final manuscript of this volume before its submission to the press.

Many individuals at three academic institutions need to be thanked for their assistance to the Frederick Douglass Papers in recent years, especially Charles Long and Raymond Novak at Yale University and Rudolph P. Almasy, Barbara J. Howe, Gerald E. Lang, Ronald L. Lewis, Nancy G. McGreevy, M. Duane Nellis, and Christine L. Tarabrella at West Virginia University. Their generous help minimized the disruption inherent in transferring a long-established editorial project to a new home. The Douglass Papers also is greatly indebted to its program officers, Richard Sheldon of the National Historic Publications and Records Commission and Douglas Arnold at the National Endowment for the Humanities, for their advice and support during this process.

Over the years many graduate research assistants and undergraduate honors students contributed to the preparation of this volume, including Cecelia Bucki, Marcus Bruce, and Reeve Houston at Yale University, Brian Berkley and Maureen McCormick at West Virginia University, and Georgia Harmon Butts, Scott Mathis, and Brett Fulkerson at Freed-Hardeman University. The editors benefitted greatly from their scholarship and attention to detail.

Special thanks are owed to a number of other individuals. Richard G. Carlson, a former member of the Douglass Papers staff, contributed to formulating the editorial procedures for this series. Our textual editor,


Gerald Fulkerson, acknowledges the assistance of his Freed-Hardeman University colleague, Don Shull, in sight collating the various editions of the Narrative. Noel Polk, professor of English at the University of Southern Mississippi, consulted with the editors and performed the machine collation of the earliest Narrative edition for the Douglass Papers. Timothy Dow Adams, professor of English at West Virginia University, provided valuable guidance to the editors on current literary theory concerning the interpretation of autobiographies. The project is also greatly indebted to Lori B. Bessler at the State Historical Society of Wisconsin and Jane Miller at Freed-Hardeman University for locating and supplying many obscure research materials for this volume.



ACAB Appleton 's Cyclopaedia of American Biography
ASB Anti-Slavery Bugle
BDAC Biographical Directory of the American Congress
DAB Dictionary of American Biography
DANB Dictionary of American Negro Biography
DHU Moorland-Spingarn Library, Howard University
DLC Library of Conress
DNB Dictionary of National Biography
FDP Frederick Douglass ' Paper
JNH Journal of Negro History
Lib. Liberator
MdAA Hall of Records Commission, Annapolis, Md.
MdHi Maryland Historical Society, Baltimore, Md.
MdHM Maryland Historical Magazine
MdTCH Talbot County, Maryland, Courthouse
NASS National Anti-Slavery Standard
NCAB National Cyclopaedia of American Biography
NHi New-York Historical Society
NS North Star
PaF Pennsylvania Freeman



Title Page, Editorial Advisory Board, Table of Contents, Acknowledgments, and Abbreviations

Publication Status