Samuel Cornish and John Russwurm: First Freedom’s Journal Editorial

(1827)

Explanation and Analysis of the Document

When the first issue of Freedom’s Journal appeared on March 16, 1827, Samuel Cornish and John Russwurm included an editorial headed “To Our Patrons,” which served as an introduction to the newspaper’s format and goals. The editors made it clear that their main concern was not reacting to white racism but instead concentrating on construction of an African American identity.

First, Cornish and Russwurm acknowledge both the audacity and the potential of what they are endeavoring to do. Since no newspaper for or by African Americans had ever...

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Woodcut image of a supplicant male slave in chains (Library of Congress)

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