John P. Usher

John P. Usher was the Secretary of the Interior under President Lincoln. Usher met with Frederick Douglass in August of 1863 after Douglass was prompted to do so by Secretary of War Edwin Stanton. Usher gave Douglass a pass allowing him to cross the Union lines.

“The pass read, ‘Frederick Douglass is known to us as a loyal, free man, and is, hence, entitled to travel unmolested. We trust he will be recognized everywhere as a free man and a gentleman.’”[1]

John P. Usher died on April 13, 1889 at the age of 71. He is buried in Oak Hill Cemetery in Lawrence, Kansas.

Exact Grave GPs coordinates: 38.958706, -95.210564

[1] David W. Blight, Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom (New York: Simon & Schuster, 2018), 407.

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