About the Project

This project looks at the The North Star, an abolitionist paper edited by Frederick Douglass that was published between 1847 and 1851. This project in particular looks at the collection held by the Library of Congress. The Library of Congress’ collection is the largest single collection of Frederick Douglass’ newspaper publications. Because Douglass’ own archives of his work were destroyed when his house burned down, there is no complete collection to draw from. The collection used in this project include 136 editions of the paper. While the editions are not spread evenly between all the years of publication, the collection is an opportunity for in-depth exploration of a part of Douglass’ career that is not always given equal attention to his personal speeches and writings.

Structure of the Project

The project consists of an exploration of themes that are clearly present in the The North Star. Each theme includes examples taken from the text combined with data analysis techniques that explore the paper as a whole and the first articles of each edition in particular. The goal of this approach was to highlight individual stories and examples that speak to the mission of the paper, while continuing to explore the paper’s overall argument and approach.

About the Author

Alex Bice is a public historian and museum professional currently based in Boston, MA. His work sits around the confluence of popular print materials like newspapers, objects, and American culture with a focus on early America and the Antebellum period. He’s originally from Las Vegas, NV and attended college at Carleton College in Northfield, MN before getting his Masters in History at Northeastern University in Boston.