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Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations. 1989.

NUMBER: 1601
AUTHOR: Frederick Douglass (c. 1817–95)
QUOTATION: I recognize the Republican party as the sheet anchor of the colored man’s political hopes and the ark of his safety.
ATTRIBUTION: FREDERICK DOUGLASS, letter to men from Petersburg, Virginia, August 15, 1888.—Douglass papers, Library of Congress.

The Petersburg men had written Douglass seeking advice about supporting John M. Langston as their Republican candidate for Congress. He would be their first black representative, but earlier he had worked against the Republican party. Douglass called him a trickster and said not to support anyone “whose mad ambition would imperil the success of the Republican party.”
SUBJECTS: Republican Party