Ten thousand people witnessed the unveiling of a bronze monument honoring Frederick Douglass in Rochester on June 9, 1899.
New York Governor Theodore Roosevelt delivered the keynote address at this important event. The sculpture that portrayed the great
abolitionist, writer, speaker, educator and statesman was the first public statue In the United States to honor an African American citizen John W. Thompson, a member of Rochester’s African American community, originated the monument project and for five years worked tirelessly to fund it and bring it to completion. Throughout the first quarter of the 20th century Thompson organized annual Douglass Day celebrations.
(Source: “Images Afro- Rochester 1910-1935)
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