John Brown medal   Save
OHS Archives/Library
Description: Two photographs showing the front and back of a commemorative John Brown medal, commissioned by Victor Hugo and several other French admirers of John Brown and sent to Brown's widow in 1874. The medal is approximately 5.2 x 0.4 cm, and features a relief portrait of Brown on one side with an inscription in French on the reverse. In English, the medal's front text reads "John Brown, born in Torrington, May 9, 1800." The reverse reads "To the memory of John Brown, legally assassinated at Charlestown, December 2, 1859, and to that of his sons and of his companions, who died victims of their devotion to the cause of liberty for blacks." Brown gained national attention when, on October 16, 1859, he led a group of twenty one men on a raid of Harper's Ferry, Virginia (modern-day West Virginia). A federal arsenal was in the town, and Brown hoped to capture the buildings and the weapons stored inside. He then intended to distribute the guns and ammunition to slaves in the region, creating an army of African Americans that would march through the South and force slaveholders to release their slaves. Brown and his men succeeded in capturing the arsenal, but local residents surrounded the buildings, trapping the abolitionists inside. A detachment of U.S. Marines arrived and stormed the arsenal on October 18, capturing seven men, including Brown. He was charged with treason by the state of Virginia, found guilty and sentenced to death. On December 2, 1859, Brown was hanged. View on Ohio Memory.
Image ID: sc223_11
Subjects: John Brown's Raid, 1859; Abolitionists -- Ohio; Ohio History--Slavery, Anti-Slavery and Civil Rights; Commemorations;
Places: Harper's Ferry (Virginia);