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198 DOUGLASS TO SUSAN INCHES LESLEY, 6 SEPTEMBER 1856

after the escaped slave. Sydney Nathans, To Free a Family: The Journey of Mary Walker (Cambridge,
Mass., 2012), 3-7.

2. Many slaves who escaped to the North changed their names as an act of defiance against their
former masters, who often named their slaves as a sign of their ownership and the slave’s status as
property. Two well-known examples are Frederick Douglass and Harriet Tubman. Originally named
Frederick Augustus Washington Baily, Douglass first changed his last name to Johnson before finally
choosing Douglass. Harriet Tubman was originally named Araminta Harriet Ross, but changed her
name to Harriet Tubman after she married her first husband, John Tubman. A second reason for such
a name change, as Douglass related in his Narrative, was to make apprehension and return to slavery
more difficult. Douglass Papers, ser.2, 1:77; Catherine Clinton, Harriet Tubman: The Road to Free-
dom
(New York, 2004), 33; McFeely, Frederick Douglass, 77, 80-81.

FREDERICK DOUGLASS TO GERRIT SMITH

Rochester[, N.Y.] 6 Sept{[ember] 1856[.]
HON. GERRIT SMITH.
MY DEAR FRIEND,
I am just home from Ohio where I have been lecturing1—and find your
kind letters for which please accept my thanks. What I think of your let-
ter to our Friend William Gordell, will be Seen in my paper of yester-
day.2 I had noticed your letter before your note reached me—Yes! I get
it all around. Mr Garrison tries his hand upon my case this week,3 the
most Skillful of them all. The Liberator and “Standard"4—Seem more
shocked, at my apostacy from the Radical Abolition Society, than at Mr
May’s apota[s]y from the American Society.5 They are tender with him—
but harsh with me. I shall endeavour to be at the Jerry Rescue (1st oct)
Celebration6—and possibly in Syracuse at the Liberty Party meeting on
the 17th Sept.7

I am as ever yours Truly and affectionately
FREDERICK DOUGLASS—

ALS: Gerrit Smith Papers. NSyU.

1. Evidence suggests that Douglass had just returned from making campaign speeches for Fré-
mont. An article entitled “A Black Disunionist Stumping for Fremont” published in the 8 October
1856 issue of the Newark (N.Y.) Advocate indicates that Douglass delivered election addresses for
Frémont in Otisco, Onondaga County, “the other day.” Newark (N.Y.) Advocate, 8 October 1856.

2. Smith’s letter to Goodell was published in the 5 September 1856 issue of Frederick Douglass’
Paper
. Smith stated that he would not vote for John C. Frémont in the upcoming presidential elec-
tion, but defended the Republican candidate from claims made during a recent speech by Edward C.
Delavan. Specifically, Delavan acknowledged that he was drawn to the pro-temperance plank of the
Know-Nothing party and asserted that Frémont was not a viable candidate for president because he

Y7271-Douglass_9780300218305.indb 198 1/26/18 9:41 AM

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