Frederick Douglass was born in the 1800’s on a hot, miserable plantation in Maryland. Growing up, he didn’t have a father and he barely ever saw his mother. Frederick was a slave from the moment he was born, destined to stay uneducated, just like most slaves. That soon changed for him after he was hired to go to the Auld’s house in lovely, sunny Baltimore. At the Auld’s house, Mrs. Auld caught Frederick by surprise. “Hello, young man. Welcome to our home!” No one had ever been that kind to Frederick before. He was excited to be in Baltimore. He almost felt free.
At the Auld’s house, Mrs. Auld taught Frederick the ABC’s. “ Here, Frederick.” Mrs. Auld handed him a book. “ Would you like to learn to read?” Frederick nodded with delight. But his lessons soon came to an end. Mr. Auld forbade Mrs. Auld to teach Frederick anymore. That didn’t stop Frederick, though. He had a strong urge to learn. He traded bread with poor boys and in return, they taught him to read. Over time, his plan worked.
He had learned to read! A victory! Frederick had now accomplished something he had always wanted to achieve. Frederick was very cheerful, until the truth hit him. And it hit him hard. As Frederick continued to read, he learned more and more about what slavery really was. He started to feel hate and sorrow, for slavery was a cruel, evil thing; and he would be stuck in it his whole life.