John Brown

By Matt Luedtke English-III-H-1st


John Brown was an American rebel who is best known for his raid against Harpers Ferry. his actions and raids were beneficial for the fight against slavery in the early upbringing of America. Overall his rebellious actions against the people and the government helped start a national civil war to end slavery.
Harpers Ferry and John Brown

Connection to Henry David Thoreau's essay "Civil Disobedience"

Henry David Thoreau was a respected intellectual who believed that "Government is best which governs least" (Thoreau). He felt that the least amount of control and interference the government has with the people, the better off America will be. John Brown knew this too, therefore; instead of fighting the government and putting his input in to them like they would want he fought the people that were in his way of success. Thoreau also states, "it[the government] has not the vitality and force of a single living man; for a single man can bend it to his will" (Thoreau). this means that the government is not powerful enough to stop a single man because a man will alter it in favor of himself. For example John Brown took the Nebraska-Kansas Acts of 1854 and looked at them in a different way than the government intended. the government intended them to be a simple and for the most part a peaceful way to determine slavery in the new expanded territories of America. but Brown saw them as a chance to take up arms and act in favor for rebelling against slavery. Overall Henry Davis Thoreau and John Brown are similar and connect in such a way because John Brown is an example of the kind of man Thoreau speaks of in his essay "Civil Disobedience".