The collection at the Frederick Douglass Museum and Cultural Center is the product of years of work and many donations from community residents.
Through a partnership with the National Park Service, the museum has several items on loan from Douglass' Washington, D.C. estate at Cedar Hill.
When the summer house in Highland Beach was renovated in the 1990s, as many pieces of Douglass family history were salvaged as possible. Due to the fact the house was unoccupied for many years, none of the upholstered pieces or bedding could be saved.
Once the house was deeded to the town of Highland Beach, the community came together to donate items in order to preserve the history of Highland Beach and Venice Beach.
We present a sample of those items here.
The pieces on display at the museum try to reflect what Douglass' life would have been like if he had been able to spend his summers at this community along the Bay.
In addition, this museum retains a number of items from children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren of Frederick Douglass, who did spend summers on the shores of the Chesapeake Bay and were prominent members of Highland Beach.
Preservation of social and cultural history of Highland Beach and Venice Beach is an important part of the mission of the museum.
Many families in both communities have donated family heirlooms in order to share and sustain the memories of summers at the Beach.