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Frederick Douglass complains to Amy Post about people gossiping about his marriage, 1884

Frederick Douglass complains to Amy Post about people gossiping about his marriage, 1884

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Douglass writes to Post, a New York abolitionist and suffragist. Had been to Post's home in Rochester, and regretted her absence. Relates that he and Helen, his wife (they married in January 1884) had for their honeymoon traveled through Chicago, Montreal, Maine, Massachusetts, and New York, among other locations without "a single repulse or insult in all the journey." Expresses annoyance with the letters and questions regarding his wife's age, their difference in race (Pitts was white), how their friends and family feel, and other topics pertaining to the marriage. Notes that they are both very happy despite predictions and questions otherwise.
Douglass writes to Post, a New York abolitionist and suffragist. Had been to Post's home in Rochester, and regretted her absence. Relates that he and Helen, his wife (they married in January 1884) had for their honeymoon traveled through Chicago, Montreal, Maine, Massachusetts, and New York, among other locations without "a single repulse or insult in all the journey." Expresses annoyance with the letters and questions regarding his wife's age, their difference in race (Pitts was white), how their friends and family feel, and other topics pertaining to the marriage. Notes that they are both very happy despite predictions and questions otherwise.

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02/10/2011

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Frederick Douglass to Amy Post
Washington, D.C., 27 August 1884.Autograph letter signed, 4 pages.Washington D.C. August 27. 1884My dear Friend Amy Post:I wish I could tell you how glad I was to find your letter to Helen and myself on our returnhome from our months tour or how sorry I was not to find you in Rochester during my brief visit tomy old home. Your absence made Rochester much less to me than it would have been had you beenthere. Then too Mrs Hallowell and Willis were both absent. Your dear Boys, Jacob and Willie, werethe same and as cordial as ever. All else was changed. I ought not perhaps to say this, for I lookedthrough your parlour, where I have so often met kind freinds [
 sic
] and saw the furniture and picturesthat reminded me of old times. While I regretted your absence I felt a pleasure in the thought that youhad strength [
2
] for so long a journey in the East. By this time I hope you are safely at home and thatyou feel about as happy in reaching it as I did on reaching my home here a few days ago. Helen and Ihave had a delightful tour. From here to Chicago – to Battle Creek, Niagara Falls – Rochester,Geneva, Syracuse, Oswego – Thousand Islands, Montreal, White Mountains – Portland, Boston, FallRiver – Plymouth – New Bedford - and what is remarkable and gratifying not a single repulse or insultin all the journey. I return home with a higher estimate of the progress of American Liberty andcivilization than I started out with. You will be glad to know that my marriage has not diminished thenumber of the invitations I used to receive for lectures and speeches, and that the momentary breeze of  popular disfavor [
3
] caused by my marriage has passed away. I have had very little sympathy with thecuriosity of the world about my domestic relations. What business has the world with the color of mywife? It wants to know how old she is? how her parents and freinds like her marriage? how I courtedher? Whether with love or with money? Whether we are happy or miserable now that we have beenmarried seven months. You would laugh to see the letters I have received and the newspaper talk onthese matters. I do not do much to satisfy the public on these points, but there is one upon which Iwish you as an old and dear friend to be entirely satisfied and that is: that Helen and I are making lifego very happily and that neither of us has yet repented of our marriage. [
4
] I give you, thanks my dear 
The Gilder Lehrman Collection
GLC05819

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