Douglass Speaks Out

Frederick Douglass, America’s leading black abolitionist, routinely criticized Lincoln for not taking action against slavery in his influential newspaper, Douglass’ Monthly. Douglass also advocated the enlistment of black soldiers in the Union army, a radical step that the Lincoln administration resisted out of fear that white soldiers would not serve with blacks. After Lincoln authorized the use of black troops in 1863, Douglass met with Lincoln to urge equal pay and advancement opportunities for black soldiers.