Skip Redundent Navigation
Territorial Kansas Online 1854-1861 Explore Topics Territorial A-Z Map Lesson Plans  

Personalities

Personalities > John Brown
75 Topic Specific Items
John Brown Melodeon
Author: No authors specified.
Date: 1846-1857

Abolitionist John Brown gave this melodeon to his daughter, Ruth Brown Thompson, as a wedding present. It was played at John Brown's funeral on Dec. 8, 1859. He originally purchased the melodeon from a musician in New York. Patent dates stamped on the instrument range from 1846 to 1857. It was manufactured by Carhart & Needham Organs and Melodeons of New York.

Keywords: Abolitionists; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Carhart & Needham Organs and Melodeons; Entertainment; Funerals; Marriage; Music; New York; Objects; Thompson, Ruth (Brown); Violent deaths

Letter, Ruth [Brown Thompson] to Dear Mother [Mary Brown]
Author: Brown Thompson, Ruth
Date: November 15, 1854

From the family's place in North Elba, New York, daughter Ruth wrote to say that "Father arrived here last night and is well with the exception of a cold." To quickly, she "rejoiced to hear that he has given up the idea of going to Kansas," and instead, Ruth now believed, would be moving to North Elba. Ruth wrote of the preparations she and husband Henry Thompson would make for Mary Brown's move and of other members of the family.

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, John, Jr.; Brown, Mary Ann Day, 1816-1884; Kansas Territory; North Elba, New York; Thompson, Ruth (Brown)

Letter, [John Brown, Jr.] to Dear Father [John Brown]
Author: Brown, Jr., John
Date: June 22, 1855

This rather lengthy letter from John Brown, Jr., at Brownsville, K.T., to his father, John Brown, regarding the Kansas family's current situation, physically and economically. John, Jr., provides a hand-drawn map of the family's settlement in Franklin County (he calls it "Brown Co.") just west of Osawatomie.

Keywords: Agriculture; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, John, Jr.; Crops; Farmers; Franklin County, Kansas Territory; Free state settlers; Land claims; Missourians; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Ottawa Indians; Pottawatomie Creek, Kansas Territory

Letter, Owen Brown to S. L. Adair and Family
Author: Brown, Owen , 1771-1856
Date: August 8, 1855

Owen Brown wrote from Munroe Falls Ohio to Samuel and Florella Adair in Osawatomie, Kansas that his son John Brown will start for Kansas Territory in a week. He mentioned that he has a "warlike spirit" and that it is necessary for defense but he hopes nothing more. He also expressed some of his religious beliefs. The letter contained a postscript written by John Brown. Florella Brown Adair was a half sister of John Brown.

Keywords: Adair, Florella Brown; Adair, Samuel Lyle; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Owen, 1771-1856; Free state cause; Lykins County, Kansas Territory (see also Miami County, Kansas); Miami County, Kansas (see also Lykins County, Kansas Territory); Munroe Falls, Ohio; Ohio; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory

Letter, John Brown to Dear Wife [Mary Brown] & Children All
Author: Brown, John , 1800-1859
Date: September 4, 1855

In Scott Co., Iowa ("about 4 miles West of the Mississippi"), on his way to Kansas Territory, John Brown wrote the family to say all was well despite some delays caused by their freight in Chicago and a sick horse. Brown commented mostly on the nature of there journey to date and some miscellaneous business matters.

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Mary Ann Day, 1816-1884; Brown, Oliver; Brown, Watson, 1835-1859; Chicago, Illinois; Iowa; Kansas City, Missouri; Missouri; Travel

Letter, John Brown to Dear Wife [Mary Brown] & Children every one
Author: Brown, John , 1800-1859
Date: October 13, 1855

One week after arriving at his sons' settlement ("Brownville") near Osawatomie, Brown wrote the family back east that although most were sick when he first arrived, they "appear now to be mending." The trip across Missouri was without incident, except for problems with a sick horse and their "heavy load." Brown then wrote briefly of the Adairs, the "most uncomfortable situation" in which he found his children upon his arrival, and other things including prairie fires and finally the political situation in the territory. In fact, at this early date, John Brown "believe[d] Missouri is fast becoming discouraged about making Kansas a Slave State & think the prospect of its becoming Free is brightening every day."

Keywords: Adair, Samuel Lyle; Agriculture; Brown, Jason; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Mary Ann Day, 1816-1884; Election, Topeka Constitution delegates to convention, October 1855; Free state; Free state settlers; Missouri; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Proslavery supporters; Settlement; Weather

Letter, John Brown to Dear Wife [Mary Brown] & Children every one
Author: Brown, John , 1800-1859
Date: November 2, 1855

In this letter from "Brownsville, Kansas Territory," John Brown made some observations about the harshness of the weather, the health of his Kansas children, their general lack of preparedness for the winter, and the farm work that needed to be accomplished. His only comment about the political situation in the territory came in closing: "I feel more, & more confident that Slavery will soon die out here; & to God be the praise."

Keywords: Agriculture; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Mary Ann Day, 1816-1884; Crops; Farmers; Free state cause; Free state settlers; Houses; Slavery; Weather

John Brown Surveyor's Compass
Author: No authors specified.
Date: 1855

While in Kansas John Brown was employed as a surveyor, an occupation which allowed him to move around freely to locate and observe proslavery camps. This compass was made by Phelps and Gurley of Troy, New York.

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Free state cause; Free state supporters; New York; Objects; Phelps and Gurley; Surveyors

John Brown portrait
Author: Ruggles, Quartus
Date: 1855-1859

John Brown portrait by Quartus Ruggles, 1889. Brown was an abolitionist who came to Kansas in 1855. Although in the territory for only about three years, he was involved in several skirmishes and helped free some Missouri slaves. Brown was hanged for treason on December 2, 1859 for attempting to overtake the U.S. arsenal at Harper's Ferry, Virginia.

Keywords: Art; Artist; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Free state cause; Harpers Ferry, Virginia; Objects; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Ruggles, Quartus; Slavery

Letter, John Brown to Dear Wife [Mary Brown] & Children every One
Author: Brown, John , 1800-1859
Date: February 1, 1856

From Osawatomie, Brown wrote of the continued severe winter and "the fierce Winds of Kansas," as well as his desire to visit the family at North Elba, New York. But he also mentioned that they had "just learned of some new, & shocking outrages at Leavenworth; & that the Free State people there have fled to Lawrence." Although more conflict threatened, Brown expected little action until the weather improved.

Keywords: Adair, Samuel Lyle; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Salmon; Free state supporters; Household activities; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Leavenworth County, Kansas Territory; North Elba, New York; Proslavery activities; Weather

Letter, Owen Brown to Dear Son John [Brown]
Author: Brown, Owen , 1771-1856
Date: March 27, 1856

Owen Brown, who died at age 85 on May 8, 1856, wrote his son, John Brown, about mundane family matters, his delight at the regular arrival of letters from his son, and his faith in God. He also mentioned correspondence with Congressman J. R. Giddings and the vote in Congress to send a committee "to Kansas to investigate the situation."

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Owen, 1771-1856; Giddings, Joshua R. (Joshua Reed), 1795-1864; Howard Committee (see also Congressional Report 200); Religion; United States. Congress

Letter, Your Affectionate Husband & Father [John Brown] to Dear Wife [Mary Brown] & Children every one
Author: Brown, John , 1800-1859
Date: April 7, 1856

From "Brown's Station" in the southeastern corner of Franklin County, K.T., Brown wrote the family about a variety of matters, including family finances/business interests and, as usual, his faith in God ("trust us to the care of 'Him who feeds the young Ravens when they cry'"). Brown also mentioned the house they were building for Orson Day, his brother in law, and the "rumors" of what was to come in the political arena. "For one I have no desire (all things considered) to have the Slave Power cease from its acts of aggression. 'Their foot shall slide in due time.'"

Keywords: Bleeding Kansas; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Watson, 1835-1859; Day, Orson; Free state activities; Free state cause; Proslavery activities; Slave power; Thompson, Ruth (Brown); United States. District Court (Kansas Territory)

Painting, Directing John Brown to the Free State Camp
Author: Reader, Samuel James
Date: August 3, 1856

Painting of John Brown being led to a Free State camp by Samuel Reader. John Brown disguised himself as a surveyor to monitor the activites of proslavery forces in the Kansas Territory. Here, the artist depicts himself leading Brown to a camp on Pony Creek in Brown County on August 3, 1856.

Keywords: Art; Artist; Brown County, Kansas Territory; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Free state; Free state activities; Objects; Reader, Samuel James; Surveyors

Letter, Chas. H. Branscomb to John Brown Esq.
Author: Branscomb, Charles H.
Date: September 22, 1856

From Boston, Massachusetts, Charles Branscomb wrote Brown a brief note conveying "fifty or one hundred dolls as a testimonial" from those who admired Brown's "conduct during the war."

Keywords: Boston, Massachusetts; Branscomb, Charles H.; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Free state supporters; Lawrence, Kansas Territory

Letter, S .[Salmon] P. Chase, of endorsement for "Captain John Brown"
Author: Chase, Salmon Portland
Date: December 20, 1856

The Free Soil/Republican governor of Ohio, Salmon P. Chase, Columbus, Ohio, wrote this letter of introduction/endorsement for "Captain John Brown" who was "a gentleman in every way worthy of entire confidence."

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Chase, Salmon P. (Salmon Portland), 1808-1873; Columbus, Ohio; Free Soil Party; Free state cause; Republican Party (U.S.: 1854- ); Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894

John Brown Sword
Author: No authors specified.
Date: 1856

The sword is believed to have been brought to Kansas Territory from Ohio by John Brown in 1856. That year, pro-slavery forces destroyed the homes of John Brown's sons in Franklin County. While leaving the state, the Brown family camped at the home of Otis Potter, near Lawrence. In gratitude, the Browns presented this sword to Potter.

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Franklin County, Kansas Territory; Free state; Free state cause; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Objects; Ohio; Potter, Otis; Swords and daggers; Weapons (see also Guns)

Letter, F. B. Sanborn to Dear Friend [Thomas W. Higginson]
Author: Sanborn, Franklin
Date: February 19, 1857

While in Boston, Franklin Sanborn wrote this letter to Thomas Higginson, a Northern abolitionist and agent with the Massachusetts State Kansas Committee. The first part of the letter dealt with business, but Sanborn also mentioned a recent speech at the State House where John Brown made an appearance. He hoped that Higginson and his friends in Worcester County would aid "the good old man."

Keywords: Boston, Massachusetts; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Higginson, Thomas Wentworth, 1823-1911; Sanborn, F. B. (Franklin Benjamin), 1831-1917

Letter, John Brown to Dear Wife [Mary Brown]
Author: Brown, John , 1800-1859
Date: March 6, 1857

During his funding raising tour, Brown wrote his wife from Hartford, Connecticut, regarding family matters and finances, and about the press coverage he was getting: "I shall send you some Newspapers soon to let you see what different stories are told of me. None of them tell things as I tell them."

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Mary Ann Day, 1816-1884; Brown, Owen; Hartford, Connecticut; Newspapers

Letter, Your Affectionate Husband & Father [John Brown] to Dear Wife [Mary Brown] & Children All
Author: Brown, John , 1800-1859
Date: March 12, 1857

In this brief letter to his family from Springfield, Mass., John Brown mentioned letters from some of the children and his speaking engagements in Connecticut, specifically at Canton "where both Father & Mother were raised." People there had given him $80 and a monument inscribed to honor Frederick.

Keywords: Brown, Frederick; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Mary Ann Day, 1816-1884; Canton, Ohio; Finance; Free state support

Letter, Joseph Bryant to Friend [John] Brown
Author: Bryant, Joseph
Date: April 23, 1857

One of Brown's devoted "Christian friends," Joseph Bryant, New York, wrote to pledge his continued support, both financial and spiritual; although Bryant was "poor in purse," he could give some financial help and would solicit more from others.

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Bryant, Joseph; Finance; Free state supporters; New York, New York; Religion; Religious communities

Letter, T. W. Carter to George L. Stearns
Author: Carter, T. W.
Date: May 1, 1857

This is the first of three letters from T. W. Carter, agent for the Massachusetts Arms Company, Chicopee Falls, to George Luther Stearns, president of the Massachusetts State Kansas Committee and major personal backer of John Brown, regarding the shipment of 200 revolvers to Capt. Brown.

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Carter, T. W.; Firearms; Massachusetts Arms Company; Massachusetts State Kansas Committee; Stearns, Geo. L. (George Luther), 1809-1867

Letter, William A. Phillips to My Dear Friend [John Brown]
Author: Phillips, William A. (William Addison), 1824-1893
Date: June 24, 1857

To "Jas. Smith" (that is, John Brown), William A. Phillips wrote from Lawrence that he would likely not be able to meet Brown en route to KT at Tabor, Iowa, but would arrange for a few others to do so. Phillips believed Brown "should come into Kansas" if he wanted to but "there is no necessity for active military preparations now."

Keywords: Adair, Samuel Lyle; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Census; Free State Party; Free state militia; Holmes, James H.; Land claims; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Phillips, William A. (William Addison), 1824-1893; Smith, James

Letter, John Brown to Dear Wife [Mary Brown] & Children every one
Author: Brown, John , 1800-1859
Date: July 17, 1857

In a very brief letter to his "wife & children," John Brown wrote from Iowa, en route to Kansas, that travel was slow because of the freight they were hauling and that little news of interest was coming from Kansas." He closed: "I would give anything to know that I should be permitted to see you all again in this life. But Gods will be done. To his infinite grace I commend you all."

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Mary Ann Day, 1816-1884; Iowa; Kansas Territory; Religion; Transportation; Travel

Letter, N. Hawkins [John Brown] to Dear Wife [Mary Brown] & Children every one
Author: Brown, John , 1800-1859; Hawkins, N.
Date: August 17, 1857

Using the alias Nelson Hawkins, John Brown wrote his family from Tabor, Iowa, on August 17, 1857, regarding some family matters and their slow trip to Kansas. He seems to suggest that if things continue quiet in K.T. he might soon direct his attention to the East.

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Mary Ann Day, 1816-1884; Free state cause; Hawkins, N.; Iowa; Tabor, Iowa

Letter, Chas. Blair to Capt.[?] [John] Brown
Author: Blair, Charles
Date: August 27, 1857

Charles Blair once again wrote to John Brown regarding the spears, the production of which was on hold. Blair couldn't afford to proceed on his own account (even though he didn't expect much of a profit) and thought the situation in Kansas might have taken "such a turn" that the weapons might no longer be needed there.

Keywords: Blair, Charles; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Oliver; Collinsville, Connecticut; Free state cause; Kansas Territory; Weapons (see also Guns)

Letter, F. B. Sanborn to My dear Friend [Thomas W. Higginson]
Author: Sanborn, Franklin
Date: August 28, 1857

Franklin B. Sanborn, an ardent supporter of John Brown, wrote this letter in Boston to one of his associates, Thomas W. Higginson. He spoke of John Brown, who was poised on the northern border of Kansas Territory, ready to bring supplies in to relieve the free state settlers. Brown had become discouraged about the free state cause "in consequence of persons not fulfilling his expectations." Sanborn wondered if Higginson or the Worcester Committee could do something to assist Brown, especially with his financial difficulties. If the committee did not have the funds, Sanborn suggested that Higginson should seek funds from his friends and associates. In closing, Sanborn offered his support for a disunion convention.

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Free state supporters; Higginson, Thomas Wentworth, 1823-1911; Relief funds; Sanborn, F. B. (Franklin Benjamin), 1831-1917; Worcester, Massachusetts

Letter, W. B. Edmonds [E. B. Whitman?] to Hawkins [John Brown]
Author: Edmonds, W. B.; Whitman, E. B.
Date: October 5, 1857

From Lawrence, October 5, 1857 (election day), "W. B. Edmonds" (appears to have been assumed name of E. B. Whitman) wrote to tell Brown that he hoped to see Brown in Kansas "soon," but he was unable to fulfill all Brown's requests, for funds and teams--the latter being especially hard to come by.

Keywords: Boston, Massachusetts; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Edmonds, W. B.; Election, Territorial Legislature, October 1857; Finance; Free state prospects; Hawkins, N.; Horses; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Panic of 1857; Sickness (see Illness); Whitman, E. B.

Letter, John T. Jones to Mr. John Brown
Author: Jones, John Tecumseh (Tauy)
Date: October 13, 1857

"Ottawa Jones," a mixed-blood Indian who lived on Ottawa Creek in Franklin Co., wrote John Brown on October 13, 1857, regarding a financial claim/account that he was trying unsuccessfully to collect on for his friend, Brown. Jones closed by asking God to bless and reward Brown in his struggle "to bring about liberty for all men."

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Finance; Franklin County, Kansas Territory; Free state cause; Jones, John Tecumseh (Tauy); Ottawa Creek, Kansas Territory; Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879

Photograph, John Brown
Author: No authors specified.
Date: ca. 1857

Tintype protrait of John Brown, probably taken in 1857. John Brown was an abolitionist who was willing to use violence to end slavery. He followed his sons to Kansas and soon became involved in some of the violence that marked the territorial period. He was involved in the May 24, 1856, Pottawatomie Massacre in which Brown and several of his followers brutally killed five proslavery settlers near Pottawatomie Creek in Miami County. He also led free state forces at the Battle of Black Jack on June 2, 1856, and at the Battle of Osawatomie on August 30, 1856. In October 1859, Brown led an attack on the federal arsenal at Harper's Ferry, Virginia, in an effort to incite a slave rebellion. Although his plan failed and he was hanged for his actions, his radical abolitionist activity added to the growing tensions between North and South.

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Photographs and Illustrations

Letter, Chas. Blair to Mr. [John] Brown
Author: Blair, Charles
Date: February 10, 1858

On February 10, 1858, Blair reported from Collinsville, Connecticut, on the status of the spear production; he had most of the material ready to assemble the entire lot, but "I do not feel quite willing to go on and spend any more money and then have them left on my hands." He seemed to be sincere in his efforts to work with John Brown on this, and Blair did "feel disposed to blame" Brown for the situation, Blair's generosity and commitment to the cause only went so far.

Keywords: Blair, Charles; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Collinsville, Connecticut; Free state cause; Weapons (see also Guns)

Letter, John [Brown, Jr.] to Dear Father [John Brown]
Author: Brown, Jr., John
Date: February 13, 1858

From Lindenville, Ashtabula Co., Ohio, John Jr. wrote his father on February 13, 1858, to report that he was ready to travel to Washington, D.C., if Brown wanted him to and to enlist the assistance of Marcus Parrott if needed. (It is unclear what kind of legislative business he intended to pursue there.) John Jr. closes by making what appears to be a veiled reference to the Underground Railroad in Pennsylvania and by relating his plan to move soon to North Elba.

Keywords: Ashtabula County, Ohio; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, John, Jr.; North Elba, New York; Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879; Underground railroad; United States. Congress; Washington, D.C.

Letter, Fred. Douglass to My dear Friend [John Brown]
Author: Douglass, Frederick , 1818-1895
Date: February 27, 1858

This brief letter from the prominent African American abolitionist Frederick Douglass simply sought to change a Philadelphia meeting date between Douglass and Brown from March 5 to March 10.

Keywords: Abolitionists; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Douglass, Frederick, 1818-1895; Philadelpia, Pennsylvania

Letter, John Brown to My Dear Wife [Mary Brown]
Author: Brown, John , 1800-1859
Date: March 3, 1858

In this short, mostly personal letter from New York, John Brown wrote his wife that he was "having a constant series of both great encouragements & discouragements," even though he had found "a much more earnest feeling among the colored people than ever before; but that is by no means universal."

Keywords: African Americans; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Mary Ann Day, 1816-1884; New York; Sanborn, F. B. (Franklin Benjamin), 1831-1917; Smith, Gerritt

Letter, Henry Thompson and Ruth [Brown] Thompson to Dear Father [John Brown]
Author: Thompson, Ruth (Brown); Thompson, Henry
Date: April 21, 1858

From their home at North Elba, New York, April 21, 1858, Henry and Ruth (Brown) Thompson wrote separate letters to "Father," John Brown. Henry Thompson assured his father-in-law that he would leave home immediately and reengage in the "enterprise" but for his obligations to his wife and three children. Ruth simply asked her father not to blame her for Henry's decision not to go with Brown: "I should like to have him go with you if I could feel that he would live to come back."

Keywords: Abolitionists; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Owen, 1771-1856; Free state cause; Thompson, Henry; Thompson, Ruth (Brown)

Letter, J. W. Loguen to My Dear Friend & Bro. [John Brown?]
Author: Loguen, Jermain Wesley
Date: May 8, 1858

Rev. J. W. Loguen, the Syracuse abolitionist and U.G.R.R. superintendant, wrote to John Brown in Canada regarding his plan to "go to the Mountains," and asked whether or not Harriet Tubman, among others, was with him.

Keywords: Abolitionists; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Canada; Loguen, Jermain Wesley; Slave insurrections; Tubman, Harriett

Letter, J. [John] Kagi to Friend Adda
Author: Kagi, John Henry
Date: May 15, 1858

John H. Kagi, one of John Brown's most trusted lieutenants, wrote from St. Catherine, Canada, to inform his friend, albeit in "figurative" language, about the change in their plans--"all depends upon caution."

Keywords: Abolitionists; Ashtabula County, Ohio; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Canada; Kagi, John Henry

Letter, Richard Realf to Gentlemen [Geo. L. Stearns, Franklin B. Sanborn, et al.]
Author: Realf, Richard , 1834-1878
Date: May 29, 1858

Richard Realf, a native of England and John Brown lieutenant, wrote to Stearns, et al, after the "temporary postponement of a certain enterprise," to solicit their financial backing of a fund raising trip to England that Realf proposed to undertake during the months before operations resume. He was confident that $2,000 could be raised without revealing any details of future plans.

Keywords: Abolitionists; Canada; England; Finance; Free state supporters; Hyatt, Thaddeus; Newspapers - Free State; Nute, Ephraim; Phillips, William A. (William Addison), 1824-1893; Realf, Richard , 1834-1878; Sanborn, F. B. (Franklin Benjamin), 1831-1917; Stearns, Geo. L. (George Luther), 1809-1867; Wattles, Augustus; Whitman, E. B.

Letter, Richard Realf to Dear Uncle [John Brown?]
Author: Realf, Richard , 1834-1878
Date: May 31, 1858

The Englishman, Richard Realf, another of Brown's trusted followers, wrote to his "uncle" (John Brown?) from Cleveland, Ohio, regarding the threat of arrest that faced him and some of his associates (George Gill, John Kagi, et al), as well as the expenses they were incuring. He also was troubled by the news that certain people knew of certain of their activities, including "a certain Mr. Reynolds (colored) who attended our convention" and "has disclosed its objects to the members of a secret society (colored) called "The American Mysteries" or some other confounded humbug."

Keywords: Bleeding Kansas; Border disputes and warfare - Free state perspective; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Cleveland, Ohio; Cook, John E.; Free state cause; Kagi, John Henry; Kansas Territory; Realf, Richard , 1834-1878; Shakers

Letter, John Brown to Wm. Hutchinson
Author: Brown, John , 1800-1859
Date: August 3, 1858

From Moneka, Kansas, John wrote to William Hutchinson regarding his (Brown's) "Revolvers," which had been distributed on loan to others in Kansas. Brown had been spending some weeks near the Kansas-Missouri border, "on the claim upon which the whole sale murders [Marias des Cygnes Massacre, May 19, 1858] were committed," as a show of force to more would-be invaders.

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare - Free state perspective; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Free state cause; Hutchinson, William, 1823-1904; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Marais des Cygnes Massacre; Missourians; Proslavery activities; Weapons (see also Guns)

Letter, E. B. Whitman to Friend [Franklin B.] Sanborn
Author: Whitman, E. B.
Date: December 14, 1858

After returning to Lawrence from a trip east, Whitman wrote Franklin B. Sanborn a mostly personal letter regarding the preparations for the winter and need to extend the loan owed to Sanborn--he had crops enough for subsistence but little cash. Near the end, Whitman commented briefly on the political situation, which was "quiet" at present, but "the difficulties in Linn & Bourbon Counties are renewed" and "J. B. is on the ground and engaged in 'Regulating.'"

Keywords: Agriculture; Border disputes and warfare - Free state perspective; Bourbon County, Kansas Territory; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Crops; Farmers; Free state legislature; Insurance; Kansas Territory. Legislature - Lawrence; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Sanborn, F. B. (Franklin Benjamin), 1831-1917; Stearns, Geo. L. (George Luther), 1809-1867; Whitman, E. B.

Letter, John Brown to Gents [Old Brown's Parallels]
Author: Brown, John , 1800-1859
Date: January 3, 1859

Designated "Old Brown's Parallels" and dated January 3, 1859, from Trading Post, Kansas, this is one of the better-known John Brown documents from Kansas. Written for publication in the newspapers just before his final departure from the territory, Brown began by stating "two parallels"--one being the failure of government to do anything about the murder of free-state men (Marias des Cygnes Massacre) May 1858; the other being his recent raid into Missouri to free eleven slaves and take "some property." In the latter incident, only one white man, a slave owner, was killed, but "all 'Hell is stirred from beneath,'" as the governor of Missouri was demanding the capture of those "concerned in the last named 'dreadful outrage.'"

Keywords: African Americans; Border disputes and warfare - Free state perspective; Border disputes and warfare - Proslavery perspective; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Buchanan administration; Civil rights; Free State Party; Fugitive slaves; Hamilton, Charles A.; Jayhawking; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Marais des Cygnes Massacre; Missouri; Press and propaganda; Slaveholders; Slaves; Trading Post, Kansas Territory

Letter, John N. Gardner to Thaddeus Hyatt
Author: Gardner, John N.
Date: January 9, 1859

This letter, written from Buffalo by John N. Gardner, is addressed to Thaddeus Hyatt, president of the National Kansas Committee. Mr. Gardner related the tale of Mrs. H.G. Hyzen of Waitsfield, Vermont, an ardent supporter of John Brown who claimed to have a clairvoyant vision of him in his prison cell. The entire letter is a passionate piece of correspondence, speaking frequently of liberty and the "Total Annihilation of that Scourge of Humanity, Human Slavery." The letter also mentioned other abolitionists--Henry C. Wright and Mrs. Child--who wrote letters to John Brown.

Keywords: Abolitionists; Antislavery perspective; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Charles Town, Virginia; Gardner, John N.; Hyatt, Thaddeus; Prisoners; Prisons; Slavery; Vermont; Waitsfield, Vermont

Letter, M. F. Conway to Dear Sir [John Brown]
Author: Conway, Martin Franklin
Date: January 23, 1859

Martin F. Conway of Lawrence wrote to Brown on January 23, 1859, to explain that he (Conway) had not seen E. B. Whitman, but Conway did not think Brown could depend on Whitman, who was "dissatisfied with your proceedings in Lawrence," for any more financial support. Conway offered his full support ("I am at your service"), but he was rather pressed for cash at that time.

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Conway, Martin Franklin; Free state support; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; National Kansas Committee; Whitman, E. B.

Letter, Wm. Hutchinson to Friend [Captain James] Montgomery
Author: Hutchinson, William , 1823-1904
Date: January 23, 1859

William Hutchinson, writing from Lawrence to Captain James Montgomery, described reports of an effort by John Brown to liberate a free state prisoner being held at Paris, Kansas Territory.

Keywords: Antislavery; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Hutchinson, William, 1823-1904; Montgomery, James, 1814-1871; Paris, Kansas Territory

Reception of [John] Brown & party at Grinnell, Iowa
Author: Brown, John , 1800-1859
Date: February 26, 1859

John Brown wrote these notes on the generous "Reception of Brown & Party at Grinnell, Iowa," where they were "kept for two days free of cost," re-supplied, and provided with significant cash for their journey north. Brown also mentioned friends at Tabor and "our reception among the Quaker Friends" at Sprindale, Iowa, on February 26.

Keywords: Antislavery perspective; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Chicago, Illinois; Free state supporters; Grinnell, Iowa; Quakers (see Society of Friends); Tabor, Iowa

Letter, Your Affectionate Husband & Father [John Brown] to Dear Wife [Mary Brown] & Children All
Author: Brown, John , 1800-1859
Date: March 2, 1859

From Springdale, Cedar County, Iowa, Brown wrote this short letter to tell his family that all was "well," despite that persistent "ague," and to discuss some family business matters: buying a team, etc.

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Mary Ann Day, 1816-1884; Health; Horses; Iowa

Letter, S. G. Hubbard to Capt. John Brown
Author: Hubbard, S. G.
Date: March 21, 1859

From New Haven, Connecticut, Hubbard wrote to inform Brown that he still believed in Brown's sincerity and supported continued efforts for the cause but could not send much money at that time. Many of their friends in Connecticut had lost everything since 1857 and others "will not give anything whatever toward the spear contract."

Keywords: Blair, Charles; Border disputes and warfare - Free state perspective; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Doy, John; Free state support; Hubbard, S. G.; New Haven, Connecticut; Weapons (see also Guns)

Letter, William Leeman to "Dear Mother"
Author: Leeman, William H.
Date: October 2, 1859

From "Harpers Ferry" about two weeks before the raid that took his life, William H. Leeman wrote his mother that, although he didn't want to worry her, he was "waring with Slavery the greatest Curse that ever infested America," and he fully expected the entire South to be "free" by the time they finished. He had "been Engaged [for the past three years] in a Secret Asosiation [sic] of as gallaint fellows as ever puled a trigger with the sole purpose of the Extermination of Slavery," and they were now ready and "determined to strike for Freedom Incite the Slaves to Rebelion and Establish a free government."

Keywords: Abolitionists; Harpers Ferry, Virginia; Leeman, William H.; Slaveholders; Slavery

John Brown pike
Author: Collins and Company
Date: October 18, 1859

Pike used by slaves at the insurrection planned by John Brown at the U.S. arsenal in Harper's Ferry, Virginia, October 18, 1859. Armed with pikes and guns, Brown's army, primarily slaves, took hostages from the community and took over the arsenal. Brown's army was overwhelmed by U.S. troops led by Colonel Robert E. Lee. Brown was tried and hanged for treason on December 2, 1859.

Keywords: Blair, Charles; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Casualties; Collinsville, Connecticut; Courts; Free state cause; Harpers Ferry, Virginia; Objects; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Slavery; Swords and daggers; United States Government; Violence; Violent deaths; Weapons (see also Guns)

Letter, John Brown to Hon. Thos. Russell
Author: Brown, John , 1800-1859
Date: October 21, 1859

From his jail cell in Charles Town, Virginia, just days before he was to go on trial for treason, John Brown wrote seeking legal counsel for himself and fellow prisoners. Brown mentioned his wounds, but said they were "doing well," expresses special concern for "the young men prisoners," and closed "Do not send an ultra Abolitionist."

Keywords: Abolitionists; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Charles Town, Virginia; Harpers Ferry, Virginia; Lawyers; Russell, Thomas; Slavery

Letter, L. Maria Child to Capt. [John] Brown
Author: Child, Lydia Maria Francis , 1802-1880
Date: October 26, 1859

Lydia Maria Child, "an earnest friend of Kansas," wrote John Brown from Wayland, Mass., on October 26, 1859, regarding her opposition to violence but her admiration for his courage and commitment to the cause of freedom. She had hoped to come to his aid in prison, but in the meantime assured Brown "that no honest man ever shed his blood for freedom in vain, however much he may be mistaken in his efforts."

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Child, Lydia Maria Francis, 1802-1880; Free state cause; Free state supporters; Kansas question

Letter, H. O. Wagoner to Wendell Phillips, Esqr.
Author: Wagoner, Henry O.
Date: November 6, 1859

H.O. Wagoner of Chicago, who had entertained John Brown one afternoon in the fall of 1858, wrote to one of the nation's leading abolitionist supporters of Brown, Wendell Phillips of Boston, Mass., regarding the latter's "oration, delivered in Brooklyn, on the character--facts of history, and circumstances with reference to 'Capt John Brown,' that noblest of God's heroes, who struck the great blow at Harper's Ferry."

Keywords: Abolitionists; Antislavery movements; Antislavery perspective; Boston, Massachusetts; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Chicago, Illinois; Harpers Ferry, Virginia; Osawatomie, Battle of; Phillips, Wendell, 1811-1884; Wagoner, Henry O.

Letter, John Brown to My Dear Wife [Mary Brown]
Author: Brown, John , 1800-1859
Date: November 16, 1859

In this letter to his wife, from the Charlestown, Virginia, jail, John Brown wrote mainly of his children--especially the daughters--and his ideas about the proper education for them, in light of the fact that some of his Eastern supporters were offering to provide assistance in this area: "You my wife perfectly well know that I have always expressed a decided preference for a very plain but perfectly practical education for both Sons & Daughters."

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Mary Ann Day, 1816-1884; Charles Town, Virginia; Charlestown, Virginia; Education; Music; Wattles, Sarah G.

Letter, John Q. Anderson to "Capt [John] Brown"
Author: Anderson, John Q.
Date: November 25, 1859

John Anderson, of Eddyville, Iowa, the brother of one of the Harpers Ferry raiders, Jeremiah Goldsmith Anderson, wrote to Captain Brown, who was awaiting execution in Charlestown, Va., jail, seeking more information about his brother's death at Harpers Ferry. He had been "two years a target in Kansas for the Border Ruffians and all, for what? Why because he purchased a claim & wished to settle on it & live by the sweat of his own brow. And now has died trying to enforce the golden rule."

Keywords: Anderson, Jeremiah G.; Border disputes and warfare - Free state perspective; Border ruffians; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Free state settlers; Harpers Ferry, Virginia

Letter, Mary A. Brown to Dear children one & all
Author: Brown, Mary Ann Day , 1816-1884
Date: November 28, 1859

Writing from somewhere "near" Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where she was staying with Lucretia Mott while her husband awaited execution for the Harpers Ferry raid, Mary Brown informed her children that their father wrote "very comforting letters" and of course was secure in his faith. Mrs. Brown wrote of the sympathy that was directed her way and of the belief that their sacrifice would yet do much "for the poor slave." Mrs. Brown expresses her own very articulate anitslavery views (slavery, "the greatest sin that ever rested on our nation") and had been uplifted by the opportunity to hear several "antislavery sermons."

Keywords: Antislavery perspective; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Mary Ann Day, 1816-1884; Mott, Lucretia; Parker, Theodore

Letter, A. D. Stevens to "My Dear Friend" [Jennie Dunbar]
Author: Stevens, Aaron D.
Date: December 3, 1859

From his jail cell at Charlestown, Virginia, Stevens wrote his love interest, Jennie (recepient information is on a handwritten copy, also in folder 10), regarding his actions and prospects ("Slavery demands that we should hang for its protection") and the fact that he regretted nothing except that he would not live to "see this Country free."

Keywords: Abolitionists; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Charles Town, Virginia; Harpers Ferry, Virginia; Slave power; Slavery

Letter, Harvey Jones to Rev. S. L. Adair
Author: Jones, Harvey
Date: December 14, 1859

Jones, who lived in Wabaunsee, K.T., wrote to Rev. Adair after John Brown's attack at Harper's Ferry. Jones asked Adair to write to him about John Brown's character and whether he was associated with a church. Jones, like Adair, was a Congregational minister.

Keywords: Adair, Samuel Lyle; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Jones, Harvey; Wabaunsee County, Kansas Territory; Wabaunsee, Kansas Territory

Letter, L. F. Parsons to "Dear Friends Redpath & Hinton"
Author: Parsons, Luke F.
Date: December 1859

Parsons, "a soldier under John Brown" in Kansas, who fought in the battles of Black Jack and Osawatomie (see, Twenty-fifth Biennial Report, KSHS, 135-136), wrote this letter from Osawatomie to James Redpath and Richard J. Hinton in response to their "notice in the Republican in regard to publishing the life of John Brown & associates at Harpers Ferry & your request for information." In addition to his Kansas activities, Parsons was with Brown and company in Iowa during the winter of 1857-58 and mentions, as did Kagi and others, the "Lyceums" conducted by Brown around their evening campfires and the "thorough course of military instruction under Col. Whipple as Drillmaster." Parsons, who was obviously proud of his association with Brown, apparently just missed being in on the Harpers Ferry raid--he had returned to KT during the long wait and was not recalled.

Keywords: Black Jack, Battle of; Brown, Jason; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, John, Jr.; Brown, Owen; Cleveland, Ohio; Cook, John E.; Coppoc, Barclay; Coppoc, Edwin; Forbes, Hugh; Fort Scott, Kansas Territory; Fugitive slaves; Harpers Ferry, Virginia; Hinton, Richard Josiah; Kagi, John Henry; Kansas City Metropolitan; Kansas City, Missouri; Leeman, William H.; Moffett, Charles; Osawatomie, Battle of; Parsons, Luke F.; Pate, Henry Clay; Quakers (see Society of Friends); Realf, Richard , 1834-1878; Redpath, James, 1833-1891; Rice, Benjamin; Springdale, Iowa; Stevens, Aaron Dwight (see also Whipple, Charles); Tabor, Iowa; Tidd, C. P.; Topeka, Kansas Territory

John Brown "Parallels" Desk
Author: No authors specified.
Date: January, 1859

This secretary was used in the home of Augustus Wattles at Moneka, Linn County. Family tradition holds that John Brown, while visiting Wattles in January, 1859, wrote his "Parallels" defense at this desk. The tradition further relates that the Wattles children watched Brown as he wrote, peering through cracks in the floor above. To hide his own location and to protect Wattles from retaliation, Brown indicated the "Parallels" were written at Trading Post instead of at Moneka. In this document Brown compares the authorities' hunt for him (for liberating Missouri slaves) to the lack of a search for the perpetrators of the Marais des Cygnes Massacre.

Keywords: Antislavery; Brown, John, 1800-1859; House furnishings; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Marais des Cygnes Massacre; Moneka, Kansas Territory; Objects; Underground railroad; Wattles, Augustus

Letter, Salmon Brown to R. J. Hinton
Author: Brown, Salmon
Date: January 10, 1860

From North Elba, New York, Salmon Brown wrote R. J. Hinton briefly regarding his father role in the Pottawatomie Creek killings of May 24, 1856. Reportedly, Gov. Charles Robinson had told James Redpath that John Brown had confessed to him that "he helped kill the Doyles" but "if Gov. R said so he lies." Brown would not have confided in Robinson, since he had not "put any confidence in Robinson after that Lawrence treaty" (ending Wakarusa War in December 1855). Salmon doesn't answer the question, but portrays the killing of "those spies" as the heoric "first blow with the sword against Slavery in this county" and insists that "they were life preservers and they saved Kansas."

Keywords: Abolitionists; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Salmon; Free state cause; Hinton, Richard Josiah; North Elba, New York; Pottawatomie Massacre, May 1856; Redpath, James, 1833-1891; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Wakarusa War, November-December 1855

Letter, James Hanway to My dear Sir [James Redpath]
Author: No authors specified.
Date: March 12, 1860

From Shermansville, Franklin County, K.T., James Hanway, a friend and follower of John Brown during the Kansas troubles, wrote to an associate, presumably James Redpath, about a book entitled The Public Life of John Brown. Redpath was not named in document, but he wrote this book on John Brown, which was published by "Thayer & Eldridge" in 1860. Hanway enjoyed the book, thought it was, "on the whole," "a correct life of the old man," but offered to author "the facts," especially as regards the Pottawatomie massacre of May 1856. In this lengthy, detailed letter, Hanway, who was with John Jr., and some others who were not on Pottawatomie Creek when the killings took place, argued that the action was fully justified under the circumstances and that Brown gave the orders, even though he personally killed none of the victims.

Keywords: Brown, Frederick; Brown, Jason; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, John, Jr.; Franklin County, Kansas Territory; Hanway, James; Jones, John Tecumseh (Tauy); Massacres; Ottawa Creek, Kansas Territory; Pottawatomie Creek, Kansas Territory; Pottawatomie Massacre, May 1856; Redpath, James, 1833-1891; Thompson, Henry

Letter, [William] Handy to My Dear Sir [Thomas W. Higginson]
Author: Handy, William
Date: April 6, 1860

This letter was written by William Handy of Boston and was addressed to Thomas W. Higginson, a supporter of John Brown's raid on Harper's Ferry, Virginia. Handy wanted to let Higginson know about a meeting in Boston to decide upon a plan of action. By this point, John Brown had been executed and several of his followers had fled the country. Most of those who remained in the United States wanted to resist the government; consequently, Handy emphasized that at this meeting "none but fighters are eligible." Handy believed that it would not be wise to rely on the legal system to give Brown's supporters a fair trial. Handy also spoke of a beautiful pistol that would soon be presented to Miss Sanborn "for her bravery in defending her brother." He also mentioned that Franklin Sanborn had been arrested in Concord for some misdemeanor; he was unsure of the details.

Keywords: Boston, Massachusetts; Courts; Handy, William; Harpers Ferry, Virginia; Higginson, Thomas Wentworth, 1823-1911; Redpath, James, 1833-1891; Sanborn, F. B. (Franklin Benjamin), 1831-1917

Letter, Sam F. Tappan to Rev Thomas W Higginson
Author: Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913
Date: June 24, 1860

Samuel Tappan wrote this letter from Lawrence, Kansas Territory to Thomas Higginson of Worcester, Massachusetts. Tappan was leaving for Colorado in a week or two, presumably to meet some family members working the gold fields. He also mentioned Theodore Parker, a supporter of John Brown who had a terminal illness and passed away while in Italy. The Leavenworth Times had also mentioned his death, albeit briefly. Tappan also spoke of James Redpath's biography of John Brown, including a portion of the book that discussed a mail coach robbery in the summer of 1856.

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Colorado; Crime; Gold mines and mining; Higginson, Charles J.; Pikes Peak gold rush; Postal service; Redpath, James, 1833-1891; Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913; Violence

Letter, L. Maria Child to Dear Mrs. [Mary] Brown
Author: Child, Lydia Maria Francis , 1802-1880
Date: December 2, 1860

One year after the execution of John Brown, on December 2, 1860, Mrs. Child wrote the Brown's widow, Mary Brown, regarding the impact her husband's actions and commitment to the cause had had on the country and efforts for "emancipation." She also sent along "a trifle" to help support the Brown family financially.

Keywords: Abolitionists; Antislavery movements; Antislavery perspective; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Mary Ann Day, 1816-1884; Child, Lydia Maria Francis, 1802-1880; Slavery

Photograph, Stone house built by Augustus Wattles
Author: No authors specified.
Date: c. 1940

Ruins of a stone house built by Augustus Wattles, Linn County, Kansas Territory, 1857-1859. John Brown wrote his "Parallels" in this house. The photograph was taken c. 1940.

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Houses; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Photographs and Illustrations; Wattles, Augustus

Letter, Wendell Phillips to Dear Friend [Mary Brown]
Author: Phillips, Wendell
Date: February 25. Year not identified.

It would appear that abolitionist Wendell Phillips wrote this letter to the widow of John Brown shortly after Brown's December 1859 execution to convey to her some financial support--specifically, a $200 bank draft. Phillips mentioned Annie, one of the Brown daughters, and closed with, "What ripe fruit your noble husband's devotion is producing."

Keywords: Abolitionists; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Mary Ann Day, 1816-1884; Phillips, Wendell, 1811-1884

Letter, Oliver Brown to Dear Folks
Author: Brown, Oliver
Date: May 16 [1857?]

From Colinsville, Hartford Co., Connecticut (most likely, May 16, 1857), Oliver Brown wrote to his family regarding his current employer, "Mr. [Charles] Blair," who had agreed to pay Oliver $200, plus room and board, for one year. "Mr. Blair is now at work making 1000 Kansas butter knifes for Father," wrote Oliver Brown. He mentioned the presence of Brown relatives in that area and the favorable "reputation of the family [Browns] in Kansas" reflected among the residents there.

Keywords: Antislavery movements; Blair, Charles; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Mary Ann Day, 1816-1884; Brown, Oliver; Collinsville, Connecticut; Hartford, Connecticut; Weapons (see also Guns)

Photograph, Jason Brown
Author: Leonard & Martin, artists
Date:

Jason Brown was one of John Brown's sons. He came to Kansas in February 1855 along with his brothers John Jr, Owen, Salmon, and Frederick and settled near Osawatomie. He was involved in numerous free state activities. This image is from later in his life.

Keywords: Abolitionists; Brown, Jason; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Cabinet photographs; Lykins County, Kansas Territory (see also Miami County, Kansas); Miami County, Kansas (see also Lykins County, Kansas Territory); Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Photographs and Illustrations

Portrait, Marian Brown Hand
Author: No authors specified.
Date:

Marian Brown Hand was a sister of Florella Brown Adair and a half sister to John Brown. Her parents were Owen and Sally Root Brown. From her home in Ohio, she corresponded with Florella and her family after they moved to Kansas Territory.

Keywords: Adair, Florella Brown; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Hand, Marian S.; Ohio; Photographs and Illustrations

Photograph, Jeremiah Root Brown
Author: No authors specified.
Date:

Jeremiah Root Brown was the brother of Florella Brown Adair and the half brother of John Brown. He did not settle in Kansas but tried to support his relatives who lived here during the territorial era.

Keywords: Adair, Florella Brown; Brown, Jeremiah; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Daguerreotypes; Ohio; Photographs and Illustrations

Narrative, Account of the Life of Fredrick Brown
Author: Adair, Samuel Lyle
Date: c. 1857

In this undated document, Samuel Adair related significant events in the life of Frederick Brown, one of John Brown's five sons. Frederick, alongside his father, participated in the Pottawatomie Massacre and other raids against proslavery supporters in Kansas Territory until his roadside murder by Martin White in August of 1856. This document also contains part of a letter to the Rev. S. S. Jocelyn recounting the winter's hardships.

Keywords: Adair, Samuel Lyle; Battles; Black Jack, Battle of; Border ruffians; Brown, Frederick; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Daily life; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Free state activities; Free state constitutions; Illness; Jocelyn, S. S.; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Lykins County, Kansas Territory (see also Miami County, Kansas); Miami County, Kansas (see also Lykins County, Kansas Territory); Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Pottawatomie Creek, Kansas Territory; Sack of Lawrence, May 1856; Topeka Constitutional Convention, October 1855; Violence; Violent deaths; Weather; White, Martin

Photograph, Owen Brown
Author: No authors specified.
Date:

Owen Brown was one of John Brown's sons. He, along with his brothers John Jr., Jason, Frederick, and Salmon settled on Pottawatomie Creek near Osawatomie in Miami County, Kansas Territory, in February, 1855.

Keywords: Antislavery movements; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Owen; Lykins County, Kansas Territory (see also Miami County, Kansas); Miami County, Kansas (see also Lykins County, Kansas Territory); Photographs and Illustrations

Photograph, John Brown, Jr.
Author: No authors specified.
Date:

John Brown, Jr. was one of John Brown's sons. He came to Kansas in February 1855 along with his brothers Jason, Owen, Salmon, and Frederick and settled near Osawatomie. He was involved in numerous free state activities and, for a time, was one of the free state prisoners held near Lecompton. He also served as the commander of a free state militia company.

Keywords: Abolitionists; Brown, John, Jr.; Free state supporters; Lykins County, Kansas Territory (see also Miami County, Kansas); Miami County, Kansas (see also Lykins County, Kansas Territory); Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Photographs and Illustrations; Tintypes

Photograph, John Brown
Author: No authors specified.
Date:

John Brown was an abolitionist who was willing to use violence to end slavery. He followed his sons to Kansas and soon became involved in some of the violence that marked the territorial period. He was involved in the May 24, 1856, Pottawatomie Massacre in which Brown and several of his followers brutally killed five proslavery settlers near Pottawatomie Creek in Miami County. He also led free state forces at the Battle of Black Jack on June 2, 1856, and at the Battle of Osawatomie on August 30, 1856. In October 1859, Brown led an attack on the federal arsenal at Harper's Ferry, Virginia, in an effort to incite a slave rebellion. Although his plan failed and he was hanged for his actions, his radical abolitionist activity added to the growing tensions between North and South.

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Photographs and Illustrations

Bill of sale for horse wagon, Billings & Bryant to John Brown
Author: Billings & Bryant
Date: Undated

The state of Iowa frequently served as a relatively safe haven for John Brown and his followers during the late 1850s, and Iowa City was on the famous Lane Trail which carried many free-state activists and settlers to and from Kansas. This document, from "Billings & Bryant," indicates that the partners had receive $100 from John Brown as payment "in full for a heavy Horse Waggon" that they agreed "to ship immediately to J B Iowa City, Iowa; care of Dr. Jesse Bowen." Bowen was a member of the Kansas Central Committee of Iowa who later lived in Leavenworth.

Keywords: Bowen, Dr. Jesse; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Free state activities; Iowa City, Iowa; Kansas Central Committee of Iowa; Lane Trail; Wagons

Keyword Search Results  
207 results for Brown, John, 1800-1859:
Displaying results:1-5
See results 6 - 10
View all results
John Brown Melodeon
Authors: No authors specified.
Date:  1846-1857
Abolitionist John Brown gave this melodeon to his daughter, Ruth Brown Thompson, as a wedding present. It was played at John Brown's funeral on Dec. 8, 1859. He originally purchased the melodeon from a musician in New York. Patent dates stamped on the instrument range from 1846 to 1857. It was manufactured by Carhart & Needham Organs and Melodeons of New York.

Keywords: Abolitionists; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Carhart & Needham Organs and Melodeons; Entertainment; Funerals; Marriage; Music; New York; Objects; Thompson, Ruth (Brown); Violent deaths


Photograph, Samuel Lyle Adair family
Authors: No authors specified.
Date:  1849
Portrait of Samuel Lyle Adair, Charles Storrs Adair, Florella Brown Adair, and Emma Florilla Adair. The family settled near Osawatomie, Kansas Territory, where Adair was a minister and free state supporter. His wife was a half sister to John Brown and he occasionally stayed with the Adairs. The family was involved in various free state and relief activities.

Keywords: Adair, Florella Brown; Adair, Samuel Lyle; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Children; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Religion


Letter, Ruth [Brown Thompson] to Dear Mother [Mary Brown]
Authors: Brown Thompson, Ruth
Date:  November 15, 1854
From the family's place in North Elba, New York, daughter Ruth wrote to say that "Father arrived here last night and is well with the exception of a cold." To quickly, she "rejoiced to hear that he has given up the idea of going to Kansas," and instead, Ruth now believed, would be moving to North Elba. Ruth wrote of the preparations she and husband Henry Thompson would make for Mary Brown's move and of other members of the family.

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, John, Jr.; Brown, Mary Ann Day, 1816-1884; Kansas Territory; North Elba, New York; Thompson, Ruth (Brown)


Letter, Salmon Brown to Dear Father [John Brown]
Authors: Brown, Salmon
Date:  June 22, 1855
From Osawatomie, son Salmon Brown wrote his to John Brown who had stopped in Rockford, Illinois, on his journey to Kansas Territory, where he was expected "before fall." Along with references to the provisions and clothing that might be needed, and the crops of corn, beans, turnips, and squash they expected to harvest, Salmon wrote "There are slaves owned within three miles of us."

Keywords: African Americans; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, Salmon; Crops; Free state settlers; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Rockford, Illinois; Slaves; Slaves in Kansas Territory


Letter, [John Brown, Jr.] to Dear Father [John Brown]
Authors: Brown, Jr., John
Date:  June 22, 1855
This rather lengthy letter from John Brown, Jr., at Brownsville, K.T., to his father, John Brown, regarding the Kansas family's current situation, physically and economically. John, Jr., provides a hand-drawn map of the family's settlement in Franklin County (he calls it "Brown Co.") just west of Osawatomie.

Keywords: Agriculture; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, John, Jr.; Crops; Farmers; Franklin County, Kansas Territory; Free state settlers; Land claims; Missourians; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Ottawa Indians; Pottawatomie Creek, Kansas Territory


See results 6 - 10
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

The current URL is http://www.territorialkansasonline.org/~imlskto/cgi-bin/index.php?SCREEN=personalities&topic_id=151&search=
Brown,%20John,%201800-1859.