Today, Speaker Boehner will unveil a statue of famed abolitionist Frederick Douglass in the U.S. Capitol. It is also the celebration of Juneteenth- a holiday that recognizes the abolition of slavery.
In celebration of Douglass’ life and this special day, here are 9 interesting facts about him.
1. Frederick Douglass was born Frederick Augustus Washington Bailey in 1818.
2. He chose his name from a character in Sir Walter Scott’s The Lady of the Lake.
3. Though Douglass was born a slave, he escaped in 1838 and eventually settled with his wife in New Bedford, Massachusetts.
4. Douglass published his autobiography, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave in 1845.
5. As a strong supporter of the woman’s rights movement, Douglass attended the famous Seneca Falls conference in 1848.
6. Douglass also founded “The North Star,” an abolitionist newspaper.
7. Douglass consulted with President Abraham Lincoln during the Civil War and helped influence the Emancipation Proclamation. After President Lincoln’s death, Mrs. Lincoln sent Douglass her late husband’s walking stick.
8. Douglass was nominated for Vice President of the United States as a member of the Equal Rights Party in 1872.
9. Douglass died in 1895 in Washington, DC.