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John Brown

 Related Terms

• Civil War
• 
Harpers Ferry
• 
Robert E. Lee

Definition: Violent abolitionist who wanted to free the slaves at all costs. He took matters in his own hands by leading a band of determined patriots on a mission to seize the federal arsenal at Harpers Ferry. They wanted to distribute the weapons there to slaves and anyone else who wanted to rise up against slavery. On Oct. 16, 1859, they succeeded in taking over an enginehouse. But the U.S. Army, led by Col. Robert E. Lee, subdued the short-lived rebellion. Brown spoke in his own defense, and Henry David Thoreau issued a plea in Brown's defense; but Brown was convicted and hanged for treason. Click here for images of John Brown.

Related Resources:
The Civil War
The Civil War was one of the most devastating events in American History. Read about the causes, see the heroes, and share the horror. Start here.

Elsewhere on the Web:
John Brown and the Valley of the Shadow
Find out the details and the backdrop for this important government act.

John Brown's Holy War
Read for yourself how this Compromise was worded.

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