Frederick Douglass’s tribute to Abraham Lincoln, 1880

A primary source by Frederick Douglass

Frederick Douglass’s tribute to Abraham Lincoln, 1880 (GLC09091)Despite initial differences, Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln forged a relationship over the course of the Civil War based on a shared vision. Fifteen years after Lincoln’s death, Douglass described him as “one of the noblest wisest and best men I ever knew.” This stirring tribute to Lincoln was later published in Osborn H. Oldroyd’s The Lincoln Memorial: Album-Immortelles (1883).

Transcript

A great man: Tender of heart, strong of nerve, of boundless patience and broadest sympathies, with no motive apart from his country. He could receive counsel from a child and give counsel to a sage. The simple [struck: could] approached him with ease – and the learned approached him with deference. Take him for all in all Abraham Lincoln was one of the noblest wisest and best men I ever knew.

Fredk. Douglass
1880

A pdf of the transcript is available here.

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