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Reading Frederick Douglass

Frederick Douglass was a former slave and an eloquent abolitionist who visited Vermont in 1843.

In 1852, former slave and abolitionist Frederick Douglass was invited to speak at an event commemorating the signing of the Declaration of Independence. He delivered a speech that has become known as “The Meaning of July Fourth for the Negro.” In it he rebuked the country for slavery, which he called "the great sin and shame of America."

This week, the speech will be read in Vermont in over a dozen communities. The events are called Reading Frederick Douglass.

We discuss the impact of Douglass' speech and his visit to Vermont in 1843 with Reading Frederick Douglass Organizer Paul Marcus and Rokeby Museum Executive Director Jane Williamson.

Also on the program, in April an inmate at the Southern State Correctional Facility in Springfield took his own life. It appears his mental illness treatment needs were not met. We hear from VTDigger Reporter Elizabeth Hewitt, who recently wrote about the situation.

Plus, we hear from the latest band in our Live From the Fort Series as Madaila performs their neon pop dance rock.

 Broadcast live on Wednesday, July 1, 2015 at noon; rebroadcast at 7 p.m.