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Frederick Douglass National Historic Site Tours, DC

part ofFrederick Douglass National Historic Site, National Park Service


The Frederick Douglass National Historic Site preserves the home and legacy of Frederick Douglass, a runaway slave, abolitionist, civil rights advocate, author and statesmen.

Born into slavery, Douglass escaped to spend his life fighting for justice and equality for all people. His life was a testament to courage and persistence, serving as an inspiration to all those who struggle for the cause of liberty and justice. Visitors to the site learn about his efforts to abolish slavery and his struggle to ensure the basic rights of all Americans.

The Douglass site covers 8.5 acres known as Cedar Hill, an area that includes the main house, gardens and an extensive collection of personal effects that both captivate and educate visitors about Douglass and his family.

Douglass moved to Cedar Hill in 1877 and lived there for 18 years. During that time, he served as U.S. Minister to Haiti and U.S. Marshal for the District of Columbia, continuing to write about and speak out for human rights and equality until his death on February 20, 1895.

A highlight for many visitors is a reconstruction of Frederick Douglass' "Growlery." It was a one room building with a stove, bed, and desk where Douglass could retreat to work and "growl" when he was in the mood.

Another popular draw to the site is The Douglass Library Collection. The collection includes books, monographs, pamphlets, serials, record books, bound government documents, rare photograph albums, and two bound volumes of The North Star, an abolitionist newspaper that Douglass published himself. Many volumes are signed by Douglass or bear his personal bookplate.

Visitors to Cedar Hill won't be disappointed by this historic site honoring the legacy of one of the most famous 19th century African Americans.

Know Before You Go:

  • Reservations are required for group tours of 10 or more
  • All visitors must pick up tour tickets in the visitor center prior to the tour
  • Visitors are advised to arrive at least 20 minutes early for introduction and bathroom stops
  • Tours start promptly at the specified time at the front door of the Douglass home
  • Visitors may not join the tour after it has entered the Douglass Home
  • Group tours are limited to 60 people, divided into smaller groups for the tour
  • Large bags and strollers are not permitted in the historic home
  • Educational institutions qualify for special group tour pricing, and must book reservations through the NRRS Group Sales Department to receive this pricing. Please call 877-559-6777 for more information. School group reservations made through do not qualify for the discounted pricing.

Getting There:

From I-295, take the exit for Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue SE. Follow for a few blocks and turn left onto W Street SE. Proceed three blocks to the Visitor Center parking lot on the right.

From I-495/95 Washington Beltway, take Exit 3 North onto Indian Head Highway/MD-210, which becomes South Capitol Street. Bear right onto Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue. Turn right on W Street SE and proceed three blocks to the Visitor Center parking lot on the right.

From Metrorail, take the Green Line to the Anacostia stop, then board the Mount Rainier B-2 Bus to the Douglass home on 1411 W Street SE.

Contact Information:

Mailing Address:

1411 W Street, SE
Washington  DC  20020

Phone Number:

Information:  (202)426-5961
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