Sword From "Bleeding Kansas"

Incidents between pro-slavery and anti-slavery settlers in Kansas becaame increasingly violent during the mid-1850s. By May 1856, pro-slavery forces had rigged elections, terrorized anti-slavery settlers, burned the city of Lawrence and killed many free-state advocates. John Brown, determined to retaliate, led his militia company, the Liberty Guards, along Pottawatomie Creek in late May. There, the armed band killed five pro-slavery settlers, none of whom owned slaves. Read more »

Location:
West Virginia,Harpers Ferry,25425
Identifier:
2011.1022.0084
Institution:
Harpers Ferry National Historical Park

John Brown's Bible

The Bible directed John Brown's adult life. A stern Calvinist by temperament and outlook, he was not a formal member of any organized church. Still, Brown read the Bible daily, receiving inspiration from both the Old and New Testaments. Brown marked passages which spoke to him in his family Bible.
Although slavery often is condoned in the Bible, Brown believed that the Golden Rule--Do unto others as you would have them do unto you--implicitly condemned slavery. In Brown's eyes, God supported violence in the service of a just cause. Read more »

Location:
West Virginia,Harpers Ferry,25425
Identifier:
2011.1022.0085
Institution:
Harpers Ferry National Historical Park

Portrait Of Ruth Thompson

In John Brown's will of December 1, 1859, dated one day beffore his execution, he states: "I give to my daughter Ruth Thompson my large old Bible, containing the family record." Ruth Thompson was Brown's oldest surviving daughter.

Location:
West Virginia,Harpers Ferry,25425
Identifier:
2011.1022.0086
Institution:
Harpers Ferry National Historical Park

Sledge Hammer Used By Marines

Marines stormed the enginehouse with sledge hammers in an attempt to break down the doors. According to one marine, the sledge hammers made "very little impression" on the thick oak doors. Eventually, the marines used a ladder as a battering ram to gain entry.

Location:
West Virginia,Harpers Ferry,25425
Identifier:
2011.1022.0087
Institution:
Harpers Ferry National Historical Park

Kennedy Farmhouse Stove

Location:
West Virginia,Harpers Ferry,25425
Identifier:
2011.1022.0088
Institution:
Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
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The Tragic Prelude

Creator:
John Stuart Curry
Location:
West Virginia,Harpers Ferry,25425
Identifier:
2011.1022.0070
Institution:
Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
credits:
Courtesy, Kansas Statehouse
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Virginia Sketchbook

Creator:
Lewis Miller
Location:
West Virginia,Harpers Ferry,25425
Identifier:
2011.1022.0071
Institution:
Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
credits:
Courtesy, Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum and Colonial Williamsburg Foundation
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Slave Auction House

Location:
West Virginia,Harpers Ferry,25425
Identifier:
2011.1022.0072
Institution:
Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
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Hauling the Whole Week's Picking

Creator:
William Henry Brown (1808-1883)
Location:
West Virginia,Harpers Ferry,25425
Identifier:
2011.1022.0073
Institution:
Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
credits:
Courtesy, the Historic New Orleans Collection, Museum
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Slave Account Book

Location:
West Virginia,Harpers Ferry,25425
Identifier:
2011.1022.0074
Institution:
Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
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