Separate the Douglass and Lincoln Birthdays

Shawn Leigh Alexander

in T. Thomas Fortune, the Afro-American Agitator

Published by University Press of Florida

Published in print June 2008 | ISBN: 9780813032320
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780813039084 | DOI:
Separate the Douglass and Lincoln Birthdays

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This chapter presents the editorial, “Separate the Douglass and Lincoln Birthdays,” where Fortune called on the community to end the practice of celebrating the lives of both Lincoln and Douglass during Negro History Week. “Douglass belongs to us,” Fortune proclaimed. The race, he argued, should leave Mr. Lincoln to the whites, and “Mr. Douglass should become their priority, an individual praised and honored for all the generations.” Fortune's argument is reminiscent of his editorial debate with Frederick Douglass Jr. about John Brown in 1889 and is a good example of Fortune's race pride late in his life.

Keywords: Abraham Lincoln; Frederick Douglass Jr; editorials; African American community; Negro History Week

Chapter.  647 words. 

Subjects: History of the Americas

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