Three Female Quaker Ministers Named Douglass and One Named Truth
From the early 1800s until the 1920s, there were at least three influential Quaker female ministers named Douglass. Two were African American (mother and daughter) and one was the Imperial Empress of the Queens of the Golden Mask, the women’s auxiliary of the powerful Indiana Ku Klux Klan.
And then there was Sojourner Truth. While Truth was not a named Minister in the Society of Friends, and said that she “liked the Quakers, but they would not let her sing, so she joined the Methodists.” Nevertheless, Sojourner Truth had strong connections to Quakers and clearly ministered to many in the Society as she said “The Lord has made me a sign unto this nation, and I go round testifying and showing on them their sins against my people.” According to her dictated autobiography, one day “God revealed himself to her, with all the suddenness of a flash of lightning, showing her, ‘in the twinkling of an eye, that he was all over,’ that he pervaded the universe, ‘and that there was no place where God was not.'”
Grace Bustill Douglass was an African-American abolitionist and women’s rights advocate. Although she was a devout Friend, she was never allowed membership into the Society of Friends because she was black.
At twenty-five, Sarah Mapps Douglass organized financial support for William Lloyd Garrison’s abolitionist newspaper, The Liberator. Her painted images on her written letters may be the first or earliest surviving examples of signed paintings by an African-American woman.
Daisy Douglass Barr served as the Imperial Empress of the Queens of the Golden Mask, the women’s auxiliary of the powerful Indiana Klan. Her role in the Invisible Empire was so important that she worked directly with D.C. Stephenson to organize women’s branches.
Sojourner Truth was born a slave named Isabella Baumfree in southeastern New York. The future abolitionist had several owners during her childhood—many of them cruel—before, at age 13, ending up the property of John Dumont. For 17 years, she worked for him and then...