John Brown's Raid on Harpers Ferry

On October 16, 1859, John Brown and 21 followers went to Harpers Ferry, Virginia, to strike a blow against slavery. The raid failed,… read more

On October 16, 1859, John Brown and 21 followers went to Harpers Ferry, Virginia, to strike a blow against slavery. The raid failed, but ignited the slavery debate. Sixteen months later, the United States erupted in civil war. 

Paul Finkelman talked about John Brown and the contradictions in his life, the underlying reasons why he felt justified to attack Harpers Ferry, and the question of whether his acts can be characterized as terrorism. Professor Finkelman also responded to questions from members of the audience.

The Saturday, October 17, 2009, keynote address was delivered at noon in the chapel of the Curtis Freewill Baptist Church. The introduction of the speaker had been made by Daniel Littlefield. The four-day symposium “John Brown Remembered: 150th Anniversary of John Brown’s Raid” was sponsored by Harpers Ferry National Historical Park, Harpers Ferry Historical Association, Jefferson County NAACP, National Parks Conservation Association, John Brown Heritage Association, and Penn State University Mont Alto Campus. close

*The transcript for this program was compiled from uncorrected Closed Captioning.

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  • Paul Finkelman Distinguished Professor Albany Law School->Law and Public Policy

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John Brown's Raid on Harpers Ferry

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Program ID:
289567-1
Category:
Public Affairs Event
Format:
Speech
Location:
Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, United States
First Aired:
Nov 8, 2009
Last Aired:
Dec 25, 2009

Airing Details

  • Nov 08, 2009 | 2:11pm EST | C-SPAN 3
  • Nov 08, 2009 | 8:11pm EST | C-SPAN 3
  • Nov 09, 2009 | 2:11am EST | C-SPAN 3
  • Nov 09, 2009 | 8:11am EST | C-SPAN 3
  • Dec 24, 2009 | 9:56pm EST | C-SPAN 3
  • Dec 25, 2009 | 12:56am EST | C-SPAN 3
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