Frederick Douglass Speaks About the American Constitution

Frederick Douglass Speaks About the American Constitution

Step back in time on Saturday, April 30 at 1 PM, as the Franklin County Visitors Bureau welcomes the public to a special portrayal of Frederick Douglass at the Franklin County 11/30 Visitors Center. The event, featuring “The U.S. Constitution in the Words of Frederick Douglass,” is inspired by the public talk Frederick Douglass gave in August 1859, just before meeting with John Brown to discuss Brown’s plans to raid the arsenal at Harpers Ferry. The April 30 presentation is offered at no charge and culminates the Franklin County Visitors Bureau’s April celebration Spring into History.

Author and storyteller Nathan M. Richardson will portray Frederick Douglass. Richardson visited the 11/30 Visitors Center in 2020 to bring Douglass to life in “A Conversation with Frederick Douglass and John Brown.”

Frederick Douglass lived an amazing life—from chattel to Renaissance man. He was a freedom fighter, self-made man, orator, author, activist, abolitionist, suffragist, and public servant. Born enslaved in 1818 as Frederick Augustus Washington Bailey, he changed his name to Frederick Douglass after escaping enslavement in 1837. He published his first book about his life called Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglas in 1845. Douglass toured America and Europe, speaking about his life and freedom. Support of Douglass grew. In December 1846 through the efforts of English and Irish advocates, Frederick Douglass was legally and totally free. On his return to America as a free man, he began printing and publishing The North Star and completed a second book My Bondage and My Freedom in 1855. He continued his relationship with John Brown and hearing Brown’s plan for the Raid at Harpers Ferry, tried to convince Brown it would not be successful. The raid did not succeed. Douglass continued to carry the message of abolition and freedom. He served as a consultant to President Lincoln, advocating for USCT (United States Colored Troops) and abolition of slavery throughout the war. He was confirmed by the Senate to serve as a U.S. Marshall from 1877 to 1881, continued his work writing, and was a strong advocate of suffrage until he passed away at 77 years old.

Throughout his lifetime, Douglass had many experiences and opportunities to learn and evolve. With such experience comes a special perspective of the American Constitution. Register for this event here, or contact 866.646.8060.

Learn & Explore Weekend, Featuring Narrative of Life of Frederick Douglass

Learn & Explore Weekend, Featuring Narrative of Life of Frederick Douglass

Friday February 25th & Saturday February 26th, 2022
African American History is American History
Featuring Narrative of Life of Frederick Douglass and tour of related historic sites in Franklin County.
Speeches by Frederick Douglass
Douglass’ speeches give a glimpse of his life and accomplishments as well as his dedication to liberty, civil rights, and equality of all human beings.
Frederick Douglass wrote several autobiographies, advised politicians and presidents, and worked for the rights of African Americans, equal treatment of women, and other minority groups.
James Daly, editor of Great Speeches by Frederick Douglass, points out his many accomplishments but notes his success as an orator.
Douglass’ speeches span more than half a century and show today’s reader an original source perspective of Frederick Douglass’ challenges as well as America’s.
Friday 25th, 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Delve into Great Speeches by Frederick Douglass – including The Church and Prejudice (1841)
My Slave Experience in Maryland (1848)
We Have Decided to Stay (1848)
John Brown (1881).
$35 /person
$50 /2-person rate
Saturday 26th, 10:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Focus on Frederick Douglass in Chambersburg.
Includes a tour of then and now sites connected to Frederick Douglass.
Event includes a lunch or dinner, representing food of the mid-1800’s.
Event concludes with a visit to Mount Vernon Cemetery on Route 30 West.
Mount Vernon is a National Park Service Network to Freedom site, where USCT are interred.
To Learn more and to sign up for the learn & explore weekend, Click Here
Living History Potrayal of John Brown & Frederick Douglass at 11/30 Visitors Bureau

Living History Potrayal of John Brown & Frederick Douglass at 11/30 Visitors Bureau

Saturday May 8th, 2021 * 1:00 PM
In-Person or via ZOOM
On May 8, the African American History Association of Western Maryland brings A Conversation between Frederick Douglass and John Brown to the Franklin County 11/30 Visitors Center, on the square in downtown Chambersburg.
Chambersburg is an apt location because abolitionists Douglass and Brown met in Chambersburg on August 19-21, 1859 to discuss Brown’s plan to takeover of the arsenal at Harper’s Ferry.
Throughout the spring and summer of 1859, Brown and his raiders made the Mary Ritner Boarding House on King Street in Chambersburg their northern headquarters.
Today, the Ritner Boarding House sits in a working-class family neighborhood, just as it did in the summer of 1859.
The presentation is offered with limited in-person seating in the second-floor Great Room of the 11/30 Visitors Center and on Zoom.
Tickets to both are a $5 dollar donation. As an added bonus, the 11/30 Visitors Center is hosting Edna Lawrence’s An African American Women’s Quilt Exhibit.
Visit for more great history resources and publications.
Purchase Tickets
Author Bob O’Connor Talks About Martin Delany at 11/30 Center at AppleFest 2019

Author Bob O’Connor Talks About Martin Delany at 11/30 Center at AppleFest 2019

The Franklin County Visitors Bureau invites the public to enjoy AppleFest in downtown Chambersburg on October 19 with a presentation of Martin Delany by author Bob O’Connor.

The Franklin County 11/30 Visitors Center celebrates AppleFest in downtown Chambersburg on October 19 with a presentation about Martin Delany by author Bob O’Connor. The talk will be held in the second-floor Great Room, overlooking Memorial Square, at 2 PM.

Martin Delany, who was the highest ranking African-American field officer of the Civil War, lived on South Main Street in Chambersburg and attended school nearby. In addition to serving in the Civil War, Delany was a physician and author. He also worked with Frederick Douglass to co-publish the newspaper North Star.

O’Connor authored more than 15 non-fiction and historical fiction books with a focus on American history leading up to and encompassing the Civil War. He shares his interest and knowledge of this period in a podcast called the “The Chronicles of the American Civil War.”

The talk is free. Reserve a seat here.

AppleFest is the annual, autumn celebration of apples, one of Franklin County’s major crops. The festival opens at 9 AM, closes at 4 PM, and includes more than 100 vendors of crafts, arts, food, music and fun for the kids. In addition to the Delany presentation, the 11/30 Visitors Center will be playing five videos in the “video vault,” offer a children’s fall-fun activity, and be showcasing new exhibits in the lobby. Main Street stores will have specials and sales.