|In a ceremony on February 8, 2001, the
State of Wisconsin, Dodge County, and the City of Beaver Dam will erected a state marker
in honor of a former slave and one of the nation's great abolitionist orators.
During the presidential campaign of 1856, Frederick
Douglass made an appearance in Beaver Dam on October 20 to address a Dodge County
audience. During the afternoon, Douglass spoke to a crowd of more than 1000 from a
lot just to the east of the former Clark House. That evening he spoke again to an overflow
crowd at the Kilbourne House.
As much as any man or woman could, Douglass
defines the American dream, having transcended slavery to become an advisor to presidents
and one of the most eloquent writers of his age. Moreover, Douglass spoke on
"almost all of the major issues facing the American people during his lifetime--from
the abolition of slavery to women's rights, from the Civil War to lynching, from American
patriotism to black nationalism." For his generation, he was the leading
advocate for freedom, dignity, and fundamental human rights for all men and women.
Historian Philip Foner has called him one of America's "most distinguished