Sunday, December 2, 2007
Abolitionist John Brown
Today we feature a portrait of John Brown. He was a notorious abolitionist of the 1850's who believed that violent tactics were warranted for the cause of abolishing slavery. In 1859 he attempted to lead an armed insurrection to free the slaves. He led a raid on the Harper's Ferry Arsenal, with the intent of taking the weapons from the arsenal, arming the slaves, and leading a revolt. He killed 7 people and injured 10 in the attack. The revolt was suppressed, and John Brown was arrested by US troops under the command of a distinguished US army officer by the name of Robert E. Lee. Brown was tried for treason and convicted. Many believe that the provocative tactics used by Brown so inflamed passions on both sides of the slavery debate that they were a major contributor to the outbreak of the Civil War.
John Brown was hung on this day, December 2, in the year 1859. On the day of his hanging, he wrote these prophetic words, "I, John Brown, am now quite certain that the crimes of this guilty land will never be purged away but with blood". And the war came.