Frederick Douglass Essay

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Etienne Reynolds | Freshman Composition 2 Etienne Reynolds | Freshman Composition 2 "Knowledge is the pathway from slavery to freedom." "Knowledge is the pathway from slavery to freedom." Frederick Augustus Washington Bailey The Life of a Gentleman Slave Frederick Augustus Washington Bailey The Life of a Gentleman Slave Frederick Augustus Washington Bailey Social reformer, orator, writer, slave. Most people know the massive wave of reforms generated by the indomitable ship that was Frederick Douglass, but not many know his meager beginnings or just how much change just one man was capable of causing. Life as a Slave Frederick Augustus Washington Bailey, later to be known as simply Frederick Douglass, was born a mere slave in Talbot County, Maryland, possibly in his grandmother’s cabin near Tuckahoe Creek, the exact details are unknown or lost. His exact birthdate is unknown even to Douglass himself, “I have no accurate knowledge of my age, never having seen any authentic record containing it” (Douglass, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave). Tragically, Douglass had never even seen what his parents had looked like, "I do not recollect ever seeing my mother by the light of day. ... She would lie down with me, and get me to sleep, but long before I waked she was gone" (Douglass, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave). When Douglass was around five years old, his owners’ wife, Sophia Auld, began teaching him the alphabet despite the fact that it was against the law to teach a slave to read. Douglass described her as a kind individual who treated him as another human being instead of an object to be used and discarded. When Hugh Auld, his owner and her husband, discovered her “treachery”, he strongly disapproved stating that a slave could become dissatisfied with his current conditions and

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