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Francis Frederick, b. 1809?
Autobiography of Rev. Francis Frederick, of Virginia
Baltimore: J. W. Woods, Printer, 1869.


Francis Frederick was born a slave on a Virginia plantation in 1809. While he was young, his master sold the plantation and moved his family and slaves to Kentucky. There, Frederick worked as a house and kitchen servant. As a child, Frederick was introduced to the Christian faith, first by his pious grandmother, and then by a woman who frequently visited his mistress. When he was forty-six years old, he met another Christian gentlemen who helped him escape to Canada on the Underground Railroad. On this journey, he became literate. From Canada, Frederick went to the British Isles, where he traveled and lectured in hopes of helping others in slavery. He returned to North America and worked for the spiritual and physical betterment of African Americans in Canada, Boston, New York, and Baltimore.

In this first-hand account, Frederick exposes the darker side of slavery, which included both physical violence and masters intentionally preventing slaves from learning. His narrative also contains humorous anecdotes about slave life at his master's plantation. He describes his escape on the Underground Railroad, his travels abroad, and the work he pursued when returning to the United States.

Monique Prince

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