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PinkMonkey.com Digital Library-Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass


CHAPTER XI

I now come to that part of my life during which I
planned, and finally succeeded in making, my escape
from slavery. But before narrating any of the pe-
culiar circumstances, I deem it proper to make
known my intention not to state all the facts con-
nected with the transaction. My reasons for pursuing
this course may be understood from the following:
First, were I to give a minute statement of all the
facts, it is not only possible, but quite probable, that
others would thereby be involved in the most embar-
rassing difficulties. Secondly, such a statement would
most undoubtedly induce greater vigilance on the
part of slaveholders than has existed heretofore
among them; which would, of course, be the means
of guarding a door whereby some dear brother bond-
man might escape his galling chains. I deeply regret
the necessity that impels me to suppress any thing
of importance connected with my experience in
slavery. It would afford me great pleasure indeed,
as well as materially add to the interest of my nar-
rative, were I at liberty to gratify a curiosity, which
I know exists in the minds of many, by an accurate
statement of all the facts pertaining to my most
fortunate escape. But I must deprive myself of this
pleasure, and the curious of the gratification which
such a statement would afford. I would allow my-
self to suffer under the greatest imputations which
evil-minded men might suggest, rather than excul-
pate myself, and thereby run the hazard of closing
the slightest avenue by which a brother slave might
clear himself of the chains and fetters of slavery.

I have never approved of the very public manner
in which some of our western friends have conducted
what they call the ~underground railroad,~ but which
I think, by their open declarations, has been made
most emphatically the ~upperground railroad.~ I honor
those good men and women for their noble daring,
and applaud them for willingly subjecting them-
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PinkMonkey.com Digital Library-Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass



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