John Brown

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 11th grade August 2001

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Harper's Ferry John Brown was born in 1800 in Torrington Connecticut. When he was five, he and his family moved to Ohio. He acquired his hatred of slavery early in his life, and his father was actively hostile to the institution. In Pennsylvania, in 1834, Brown began a project that was meant to educate blacks. For twenty years to come, he was dedicated to abolition. His activeness in his sons led to the murder of a number of abolitionists. He was totally against slavery, and wanted to do what it took to get rid of it.

In 1857, he began a plan to rid of slavery by armed force. He secretly created a small group of followers. On October 16, 1859, he set out. He and eighteen men, including sons took over the United States Armory at Virginia. After he made this victory, he did not attempt to make any more offensive measures, but he began to work on his defense.

However, he was soon surrounded by the local militia which was backed by the marines. Eventually, ten of his men, two of which were his sons were killed. He himself was wounded, and forced to surrender.

Brown was arrested, charged murder and treason and despite his defense, the courageous abolitionist was sentenced to hang in Charlestown.. For years after his death, he was considered a martyr by fellow abolitionists to the cause of human freedom. He became the subject of a song with the first line being "John Brown's body lies a-mould' ring in the grave". He was a man who had a belief and fought for it. The fact that he was willing to die for it shows his strength and seriousness.