One of the most powerful statesmen in American history, Stevens fought tirelessly for civil rights and led some of the greatest reforms of his century.

Stevens helped codify the principle of legal equality in the 13th and 14th Amendments. He set the stage for equal voting rights with the design of the 15th Amendment. Believing that an informed society was an essential foundation of democracy, Stevens worked across political parties to preserve Pennsylvania’s free public education system.

Known for his radical opinions and biting wit, Stevens often took positions well in advance of public opinion. He pushed leaders like Abraham Lincoln toward change and advocated tirelessly for civil rights.

A black and white sketched illustration of Thaddeus Stevens reading and pointing above a crowd on men.
The Last Speech on Impeachment. Thaddeus Stevens closing the debate in the House, March 2, 1868. From Harper's Illustrated Weekly.
A rendering image of the recreated law office of Thaddeus Stevens with people examining books.

Stevens’ actions earned him both admirers and enemies. As racist backlash emerged in the wake of Reconstruction, Stevens’ public image was battered — and has never been fully restored.

It’s time to share his inspirational story with the nation.

A sepia tone historic image of Frederick Douglass, a man with dark skin, a beard, and white-gray hair.

There was in him the power of conviction, the power of will, the power of knowledge, and the power of conscious ability…qualities of mind and heart which at last made him more potent in Congress and in the country than even the president and cabinet combined.

Frederick Douglass

American abolitionist & orator
May 24, 1869

A historical building in downtown Lancaster masked by an ampersand.

Continue his work.

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