About the Book
To fully understand Frederick Douglass, it is essential to have a pictorial sense of the unusual place that gave rise to one of America’s most consequential figures. Bear Me Into Freedom: The Talbot County of Frederick Douglass provides an important new perspective into the early years of America’s most famous freedom fighter.
Frederick Douglass is an iconic figure in American history—a powerful writer, a stirring orator, a revolutionary philosopher, a crusading figure in the fight to abolish enslavement, establish emancipation, and promote justice and civil rights.
The story of Frederick Douglass is inextricably linked with Talbot County on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. It is the place where he was born into slavery in 1818 and spent eleven of the first twenty years of his life before seeking his freedom in New England. Douglass detailed his Talbot experiences with astonishing precision in his three autobiographies, experiences that became the foundation of the most powerful slave narrative in American literature.
The county, half water and half land, is like no other in America. Riddled with streams, creeks, rivers, and bays, its unique geography was the source of his fervent belief that Talbot’s waters would one day bear him into freedom.
Douglass and his biographers have written hundreds of thousands of words describing his time in Talbot. Bear Me Into Freedom is the first attempt to marry imagery with Douglass’s words to picture what Talbot County may have looked like when Frederick Douglass lived there two centuries ago.