I was born in Tuckahoe, near Hillsborough, and about twelve miles from Easton, in Talbot county, Maryland. I have no accurate knowledge of my age, never having seen any authentic record containing it. By far the larger part of the slaves know as little of their ages as horses know of theirs, and it is the wish of most masters within my knowledge to keep their slaves thus ignorant.
See Important Quotations Explained Douglass was born in Talbot County, Maryland, though he does not know the year, as most slaves are not allowed to know their ages.
Douglass remembers being unhappy and confused that white children knew their ages, but he was not allowed even to ask his own. He estimates, based on an overheard comment from his master, that he was born in or around Douglass is separated from his mother soon after birth—a common practice among slave owners.
Douglass assumes that this custom is intended to break the natural bond of affection between mother and child. He recalls that he only saw his mother on the rare occasions when she could walk twelve miles after dark to lie next to him at night.
Harriet dies when Douglass is about seven. He is told about it afterward and is hardly affected by the news.
Douglass knows only that his father is a white man, though many people say that his master is his father. He explains that slaveholders often impregnate their female slaves.
Thus slaveholders actually profit from this practice of rape, as it increases the number of slaves they own. Douglass considers that the existence of such a large population of mixed-race slaves contradicts arguments that justify American slavery through the supposed inferiority of the African race.
Plummer, is a drunk and a cruel man who carries a whip and cudgel with him and often uses them on slaves.
The Captain himself is cruel as well. Douglass recalls feeling like both a witness to and a participant in the abuse the first time he ever saw it.
He remembers this moment as his introduction into the hellish world of slavery. Douglass recalls a particularly violent episode of the Captain whipping Aunt Hester. Douglass implies that the Captain has a particular sexual interest in Hester, who is quite beautiful.
The Captain brings Hester home, strips her to the waist, ties her, and whips her until her blood drips on the floor. Young Douglass is so terrified by the scene that he hides in a closet, hoping he will not be whipped next.
They all live together in one house on a central plantation owned by Colonel Lloyd. Captain Anthony and his son-in-law, Captain Auld, take the goods by ship to sell in Baltimore.A summary of Chapters I–II in Frederick Douglass's Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass.
Learn exactly what happened in this chapter, scene, or section of Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass and what it means. Perfect for acing essays, tests, and quizzes, as well as for writing lesson plans. Never having enjoyed, to any considerable extent, her soothing presence, her tender and watchful care, I received the tidings of her death with the much the same emotions I should have probably felt at the death of a stranger.
Free summary and analysis of the quotes in Chapter 1 of Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass that won't make you snore.
We promise. Read Chapter 1 of Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave by Frederick Douglass. The text begins: I was born in Tuckahoe, near Hillsborough, and about twelve miles from Easton, in Talbot county, Maryland.
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Literature Network» Frederick Douglass» A Narrative on the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave» Chapter 1 Chapter 1 I was born in Tuckahoe, near Hillsborough, and.