Due to a special event, on Wednesday, July 8, there will be no tours of the U.S. Capitol after 11 a.m. Emancipation Hall and Exhibition Hall in the Capitol Visitor Center will be unavailable all day. While reservations prior to 11 a.m. will be honored, same-day passes will not be available. The Capitol Visitor Center will close at noon except for individuals on official business and those going to the House and Senate Galleries.

Exhibit Theme

Expanding Educational Opportunity

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Letter from Frederick Douglass to...
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Letter from Frederick Douglass to Hon. Justin S. Morrill, January 4, 1880

African American activist Frederick Douglass praised the efforts of Senator Justin S. Morrill of Vermont to boost public funding to historically black schools. Morrill, who had introduced the first Land-Grant Act in the House of Representatives, garnered support for a second Land-Grant Act in 1890 that prohibited racial discrimination in distribution of state-based land-grant educational funds.

If our government should place a school house at every cross road of the South and support teachers for cash during the next fifty years it would hardly atone for the wrong done my people during their two hundred years of slavery and enforced ignorance. Having been a slave, I have learned the value of education in part from my own destitution of it.

Manuscript Division, Library of Congress