John Brown

violent abolitionist

John Brown

  • abolitionist
  • led the Raid on Harper's Ferry
  • died because of his raid
  • more violent than other abolitionists, such as Frederick Douglass


John Brown was born on May 9, 1800 and died December 2, 1859. John Brown lived to the age of 59. Brown was an abolitionist. Brown believed that he must overthrow slavery with violence. Brown believed that people who support slavery should be in the slave's position and feel how it feels to get whipped. When Brown was young, he witnessed the beating of a young black boy. This image haunted Brown for the rest of his life. Brown would often attack people who favored slavery. Brown also worked with the Underground Railroads and helped slaves escape. When Brown met Frederick Douglass, he tried to convince him to come and raid Harper's Ferry with him. Douglass declined and said he was walking into a trap. Brown wanted to raid Harper's Ferry because he was planning a slave rebellion. Brown needed weapons so he went with his 21 other friends to try and seize the weapon arsenal at Harper's Ferry. Brown failed and was hanged December 2, 1859 for his action.

Connections with William Lloyd Garrison

William Lloyd Garrison and John Brown are related because they were both abolitionists at the same time. Garrison was not as violent as Brown but created a newspaper called The Liberator. Both of these people were important figures to the North.