The Life of Frederick Douglass During the 1800’s the lives of slaves were not particularly easy. Long, hard days called for many tough times for slaves. Alike many slaves, Frederick Douglass lived a life filled with many hardships, some of which made him into a better man. In Douglass’s book Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass life was filled with poor treatment and cruel masters, but with perseverance and determination, Douglass conquered adversity and became an aspiring leader. Douglass did not live a terrible life as a boy because of his age. For others on the plantation that he was on, it was rough. Douglass says, “The overseers name was Plummer. Mr. Plummer was a miserable drunkard, and a profane swearer, and a savage monster. …show more content…
He is then sent back to Maryland to live under a man named Thomas Auld. Mr. Auld is a very cruel man that believes that Douglass is not fit to work for Him. Auld then sends Douglass to live with a man named Mr. Covey. Mr. Covey is notorious for working slaves to their breaking point so they can then work better for their masters. Mr. Covey made Douglass work in the field for the first time and Douglass received many beating because of his inexperience. Douglass and Mr. Covey strongly disliked each other, eventually causing a fight between them. Douglass says, “This battle with Mr. Covey was the turning-point in my career as a slave. It rekindled the few expiring embers of freedom, and revived within me a sense of my own manhood. It recalled the departed self-confidence, and inspired me again with a determination to be free. The gratification afforded by the triumph was a full compensation for whatever else might follow, even death itself” (Douglass, 978). From then on, Douglass has the determination to carry out anything he set his mind …show more content…
Covey, Douglass is sent back to Baltimore to live with Mrs. Auld. There Douglass gets a job in a shipyard where he pays his earning to Mr. Auld. Douglass continues to work hard and pay his weekly wages to Mr. Auld. Douglass finally comes up with a plan to escape on September third. Douglass finally escapes to the free land in New York. Douglass said, “In about four month after I went to New Bedford there came a young man to me, and inquired if I did not wish to take the “liberator.” I told him I did; but, just having made by escape from slavery, I remarked that I was unable to pay for it then. I however, finally became a subscriber to it. The paper came, and I read it from week to week with such feelings as it would be quite idle for me to attempt to describe. The paper became my mean and soul. My soul was set all on fire” (Douglass, 997). The man he met is named David Ruggles. Ruggles takes Douglass in and eventually takes Douglass to an anti-slavery convention in New Bedford. Douglass spoke there and told the story of his life. Everything he went through and how he overcame
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Following the death of Fredrick’s, slave owner, Captain Anthony, Douglass was sold to the ownership of Anthony’s son-in-law. Douglass was later hired out to a professional slave breaker, a man who would beat and mistreat slaves until they gave up and did whatever they were told. Weeks later, Douglass began to fight back, consequently the beatings stopped. He then became under the ownership of the Auld’s. The Auld’s took Douglass back home with them to Baltimore, where he began to work on the shipyards.
Covey’s constant abuse nearly broke the 16-year-old Douglass psychologically. Eventually, however, Douglass fought back, in a scene rendered powerfully in his first autobiography”(Douglass,3).He tried to escaped twice before he finally succeed. Douglas fought for his freedom.
Douglass arrives at Covey’s farm on January 1, 1833, and he is forced to work in the fields for the first time. For his first task he had to fix an oven. Douglass failed fixing the oven so, Covey orders him to take off his clothes and receive punishment. Covey often works in the fields with his slaves. Douglass recalls that he spent his hardest times as a slave during his first six months rented to Covey.
After the death of captain Anthony, Douglass was taken back to serve Anthony's son-in-law. Thomas Auld is even worse than Anthony due to religious piety. Auld considered Douglass to be unruly and sends him away to a slave breaker named Covey. Douglass endured countless beatings and whippings while under Covey. It was up until 6 months when Douglass one day decided to fight back.
Douglass had always retained an ambitious flame within himself and honed his drive into freedom from the brutalization of slavery. When Douglass moved to work under Mr. Freeland’s hand, he met and became good friends with a few other slaves. Douglass filled them with dreams of freedom and unveiled their ambition for abolition. They gathered up canoes and attempted to paddle their way to freedom (Douglass, p. 95). While they failed, it shows how simple it is for slaves to desperately want to try; ambition.
Covey was significant because it brought his desire to escape back when he himself couldn’t. Before his fight, Frederick Douglass was working all day, depressed, and broken. He had no outlet but to pour his complaints out to God. Douglass states, “You are loosened from your moorings, and are free; I am fast in my chains, and am a slave! You move merrily before the gentle gale and I sadly before the bloody whip!
Covey was the turning-point in my career as a slave. It rekindled the few expiring embers of freedom, and revived within me a sense of my own manhood. It recalled the departed self-confidence, and inspired me again with a determination to be free” (Douglass 10, 12). There are a few significant moments on Douglass’ road from slavery to freedom; however this is likely the most essential. When he faces Mr. Covey, he feels as though he's been awaken from the tomb of slavery.
Douglass was sent to live with Mr. Edward Covey in January 1833. Thomas Auld considered Douglass as a reluctant slave, so he sent to a slave breaker, Edward Dovey. Covey was a poor land renter who took slaves and used them to work his land while receiving training and discipline. Covey was known for his inhuman and harsh treatment of slaves. Douglass constantly thinking of freedom, so he did not follow instructions of his new master.
It recalled the departed self-confidence, and inspired me again with a determination to be free” (ch. X). This battle with Covey marks a turning point for Douglass because it reignited the hope he once had and reintroduced to him a sense of strength he thought he had lost. In Douglass’s earlier years as a slave, he held a more optimistic outlook on his situation.
The Narrative of Frederick Douglass is a very great perspective for people of today to understand what it was like to be a slave in the 1800’s. It tells the story of the slave Frederick Douglass and how he began as an uneducated slave and was moved around from many different types of owners, cruel or nice, and how his and other slaves presences changed the owners, and also how he educated himself and realized that he shouldn’t be treated so poorly It was at the point later in the book that I realized how some slaves might have felt during slavery in the 1800’s. When Douglass is sent away to Mr.Covey he is treated pretty badly but eventually he stands up to Mr.Covey and demands that he stopped being treated like an animal.
Douglass encountered multiple harsh realities of being enslaved. For example, the ex-slave was practically starved to death by his masters on multiple occasions. In fact, “[He was] allowed less than a half of a bushel of corn-meal per week, and very little else... It was not enough for [him] to subsist upon... A great many times [he had] been nearly perishing with hunger” (pg 31).
PAGE 2 In the Narrative Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass by Frederick Douglass, he uses this text to explain his purpose in “throwing light on the American slave system”, or show it for what it really is, as well as show his position on how he strongly believes slavery is an issue that needs to be addressed and how it differs from those who defended slavery, with experiences from his own life to support his argument. Douglass uses experience from his early days as a young slave to throw light on the aspect of physical abuse. According to his narrative, Douglass states, “Master, however, was not a humane slaveholder.
Douglas spent a year with Covey, during which he was frequently and brutally whipped. Having spent considerable time in the city, Douglass was not familiar with farm instruments and techniques. Because of this unfamiliarity, he made mistakes and was continually punished. Covey pushed his slaves to the limit, making them work long
Resolving to fight back against Covey thrusts Douglass into manhood and is the first instance of justified violence seen in the novel: “It rekindled the few expiring embers of freedom, and revived within me a sense of my own manhood...and inspired me again with a determination to be free” (68). Although up to this point the violence described was portrayed as completely unjust and terrible, here the reader is to understand that, for the slave, this type of violence may not only be necessary, but completely justified when attempting to gain