knotyouraveragejo wrote: ↑
January 5th, 2019, 1:43 pm
Sue Anderson wrote: ↑
January 4th, 2019, 8:26 am
Wayne, as to the author of the piece, that was all new research for me. I enjoyed doing it and found the history very interesting. I am going to leave the author of both pieces as "Othello." That he was a free Negro seems unquestionable. Who exactly he was, or where he was from, we don't really know. You said, in Essay No. 1 "a free Negro of Baltimore." I'd just leave that as is. If you want to just say "a free Negro" and not mention a place in Essay No. 2, that might be better, but it's no big matter one way or the other.
Please upload both the corrected Essay No. 1 and Essay No. 2 to SNF063 here: viewtopic.php?f=19&t=73089.
Just to clarify (without having listened to the recording), we read the text exactly as written - no additions of subtractions. In other words, "Othello Baltimore, May 10, 1788"
If we want to speculate on the actual identity, based on Sue's or other research, this can be added to the summary or to the author blurb in the catalog.
Jo, I am sorry if I did not make myself clear in my remarks to Wayne. I was not referring to his reading of the actual text of the Essays Nos. 1 and 2. I was referring to how he words the Librivox introduction to these essays. Of course, the actual text must be read “exactly as written, no additions or subtractions of words.”
What Wayne says by way of introduction to Negro Essay No. 1 is this” “What the Negro Was Thinking During the Eighteenth Century,” Essay on Negro Slavery, No. 1 by Othello, a free Negro living in Baltimore, May 10, 1788, in the Journal of Negro History…” etc.
What I was concerned about was the phrase “living in Baltimore”
since we do not know whether Othello was “living in” or just “visiting” Baltimore (i.e. giving a speech in Baltimore as part of a speaking tour). I did not think it was necessary to remove the words “living in Baltimore” from his introduction of Essay No. 1, but I thought it would be more accurate to just say “Othello, a free Negro” for Essay No. 2.
Probably it would be best to just say "Othello."
Gutenberg’s typography adds confusion. The last words you see in Gutenberg’s version of Essay No. 1 are these: “Othello Baltimore, May 10, 1788.” When I first saw those words, I thought the name of the author was “Othello Baltimore.” However, when I looked at Essay No. 2 and saw the last words were “Othello Maryland, May 23, 1788.” I knew that “Baltimore” referred to a place, not a last name.
If you look at the original text from 1788, the typography is different. https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=osu.32435073185555;view=1up;seq=424
Othello is written in very large caps on a different line from Baltimore and the date, written in smaller size text:
Baltimore, May 10, 1788
The American Museum magazine uses pseudonyms frequently (for instance “Tribunis.”). This, and the way the signature/date text was laid out led me to the conclusion that “Othello” was a pseudonym.