Posts Tagged ‘John Brown’

Oh! Abraham, Resign

August 16, 2012

Image from Son of the South

From the Philadelphia Inquirer.



The days are growing shorter,
The sun has crossed the line,
And the people are asking,
“Will Abraham resign?”
Poor old Father Abraham,
Once a people’s pride;
Your glory has deserted,
We’re prepared to let you “slide.”

You’ve forgotten all the promises
Made in those speeches fine,
When traveling to the capital,
Oh! Abraham, resign!
Poor old Father Abraham.

You’ve kill the Constitution,
Framed by patriots “lang syne;”
You’ve gagged the mouths of freemen,
Oh! Abraham, resign!
Poor old Father Abraham.

Between states once fraternal,
You’ve drawn your party line;
You’ve brought us war infernal,
Oh! Abraham, resign!
Poor old Father Abraham.

You’ve imprisoned honest freemen,
And in dungeons let them pine
For home, and wife, and children,
Oh! Abraham, resign!
Poor old Father Abraham.

You’ve leagued with John Brown, Forney,
To Greeley you incline,
You’re hand and glove with Sumner,
Oh! Abraham, resign!
Poor old Father Abraham.

The people will not swallow
That wicked scheme of thine,
To ‘mancipate the “woolly heads,”
Oh! Abraham, resign!
Poor old Father Abraham.

Pennsylvania has condemned you,
Ohio’s in the line;
And the Hoosier boys are shouting,
Oh! Abraham, resign!
Poor old Father Abraham.

The Empire State has spoken
Against thee, Abr’ mine;
The Jersey Bines are after thee,
Oh! Abraham, resign!
Poor old Father Abraham.

Against these solemn warnings,
Steel not that heart of thine;
Far “better late than never,”
Oh! Abraham, resign!
Poor old Father Abraham.

Allen County Democrat (Lima, Ohio) Dec 10, 1862

A Difference

May 11, 2012

A Difference.

John Brown made an unlawful attempt to destroy slavery, which resulted in the killing of a dozen men. He was arrested, tried and hung.

Jefferson Davis made an unlawful attempt to perpetuate slavery, which resulted in the death of a million men. He is in durance vile, but from present indications stands a hundred chances of being the next President to one of being hung. From all of which we gather that it is treason worthy of death to take up arms against slavery, and no treason to take up arms for its perpetuation. —

If Jefferson Davis is not hung, the execution of John Brown was cold and unjustifiable murder.

The Hillsdale Standard (Hillsdale, Michigan) May 22, 1866


More about the above image from Roy Rosenweig Center for History and New Media:

This lithograph, rather than depicting the scene of Jefferson Davis’ arrest, added other symbols to create a more allegorical representation of the Confederate President’s capture by Union soldiers. Davis, wearing a woman’s dress and bonnet, sits in a birdcage suspended from a hangman’s scaffold. Next to the cage, John Brown, clad in a white robe, rises from out of the ground and points accusingly at Davis. Beneath the cage, diminutive figures of African Americans — in costumes familiar from minstrel stage representations of supposed black character “types” — perform a jubilant and mocking dance. Brown became the most famous martyr to the anti-slavery cause in 1859, when he led a small band of armed men in a raid against the federal arsenal at Harpers Ferry, Virginia, intending to seize the weapons there and free all slaves in the vicinity. Brown and his associates were captured and hanged for treason.

Source: G. Querner, John Brown Exhibiting His Hangman, lithograph, Cincinnati, 1863.


What the Mother of a Soldier Starved at Anderson Thinks.

From the Cincinnati Commercial, June 1.

EDS. COM. — In your paper of yesterday you say “There is no great eagerness for the hanging of Jeff. Davis. The best public opinion is that he ought to have been permitted to run away, or killed on the spot when captured, and that he should now be set ashore upon the continent of Africa,” etc.

I am the mother of one of the bravest of volunteer soldiers, who served his country during the late war, and died, with the thousands of her sons, at Andersonville, under the treatment of Jeff. Davis.

What I want the Government whom these men served, and for whom they were so cruelly murdered, to assure us, their surviving friends, is that we are not to be insulted by the liability of meeting that murderer face to face in the streets or highways of his native land. I cannot imagine that the Government contemplates inflicting such a torture on its own friends, as this possibility.

Perhaps we had a right to demand his death — perhaps there is not one of us who would not almost have given their own life to have been allowed to take his — perhaps in the history of the world there has never been an instance of a man who has so barbarously treated his prisoners, being, in return, pampered with luxuries and indulgencies, and invited, as it were, to live, by the very polite government for whom our poor boys have been sacrificed.

Is he to have his health carefully considered, who refused to shelter from the cold, the heat and the storm, the sick and dying of our army? — Dying a thousand deaths in this monstrous captivity, without a friend to help them, and we, their nearest and dearest, expected to sit by with complacency and read the reports of this man’s trumpery nerves, published to excite commiseration for his fate?

Should the Government again require volunteer help, what amount does it expect from the families of the thousands who are lying at Andersonville?

Will the press befriend those whom all other powers have deserted?


The Hillsdale Standard (Hillsdale, Michigan) Jun 12, 1866

Free States, States’ Rights & New Nationalism

December 8, 2011

Image from Kansas Historical Quarterly


Colonel Roosevelt Will Dedicate Park at Osawatomie, Kas.

OSAWATOMIE, Kas., Aug. 28. — On the battlefield at the outskirts of this village, where fifty-six years ago John Brown, the fighting abolitionist, with a handful of stern free state men stood off ten time his number of pro-slavery guerrillas, Theodore Roosevelt next Wednesday will deliver an address dedicating the historic ground as a state park. A tract of twenty-two acres, the supposed scene of the battle of Osawatomie, was purchased some time ago by the woman’s relief corps of the Kansas G.A.R. and given to the state. It will be called the John Brown park.

The program of the dedication will cover two days, August 30 and 31. Colonel Roosevelt will arrive here at 9:30 in the morning of the 31st. First he will be taken to visit the old log cabin just west of the town, where, with his stalwart sons, John Brown lived until after the fight which gave him, the name “Osawatomie” Brown. He left the neighborhood and finally drifted back to the east and Harpers Ferry.

After luncheon Colonel Roosevelt, escorted by a troop of Spanish war veterans, will take part in a parade to the grand stand in the new park, where he will be introduced by Governor Stubbs of Kansas. On September 1, he will go to Kansas City, where he is to deliver an address on conservation.

The first day of the exercises is to be given over to martial music, patriotic recitations and a speech by Representative W.A. Calderhead of Kansas.

The battle of Osawatomie on August 30, 1856, the first instance in which the anti-slavery men of Kansas, known as the free state party, showed organized resistance to the bands of pro-slavery marauders, commonly called “ruffians” in that day, came as the direct result of the sack of Lawrence, the headquarters of the free state party. This brought matters to a head. Emboldened by success the pro-slavery leaders openly avowed a policy of extermination. Most of the dare-devil marauders who made up their fighting ranks were guerillas from Missouri.

John Brown, who had just come from the east, was the first to inspire his party to armed resistance. A few weeks after the sack of Lawrence he received word that 400 “ruffians” under General J.W. Ried were marching on Osawatomie. He hastily called forty-one supporters and armed them.

Stationing himself at the edge of a wood, he held the “ruffians” at bay in spite of their cannon, until further resistance meant massacre. Most of Brown’s men escaped by swimming the Marias des Cynges river. He lost six men killed and seven captured.

The loss to the “ruffians” has been reported at from ten to thirty.

The three survivors of the battle, the only ones so far as known, will be here to attend the dedication. They are Edward P. Bridgeman of Madison, Wis., who will have his three sons with him; D.W. Collins of Santa Monica, Col., and Luke F. Parsons of Salina, Kas.

The Nebraska State Journal (Lincoln, Nebraska) Aug 29, 1910

Portrait of Eli Thayer, 1819-1899, who in 1853-54 was a representative in the Massachusetts legislature, and while there, originated and organized the New England Emigrant Aid Company. He worked to combine the northern states in support of his plan to send antislavery settlers into Kansas. Lawrence, Topeka, Manhattan, and Ossawatomie, Kansas, were settled under the auspices of his company.

Image and caption from Kansas Memory


Indignant That John Brown Should Be Credited With Honors Belonging to Her Father.

WORCESTER, Mass., Sept. 19. — Enraged because former President Roosevelt, in his recent Osawatomie speech lauded John Brown as the greatest of Kansans, Miss Eva Alden Thayer, daughter of the late Congressman Eli Thayer, has taken the photograph of Colonel Roosevelt from the library of her home and thrown in on the ash heap.

Miss Thayer says:

“It is an historical fact that it was Eli Thayer and Dr. Charles Robinson who are responsible for the state being admitted January 29, 1861, as a free state, and it is certainly the height of impertinence and audacity for the man who says he believes in fair play and a square deal giving the credit to John Brown, the Harper’s Ferry insurrectionist.”

Lincoln Evening News (Lincoln, Nebraska) Sep 19, 1910

Lincoln Evening News (Lincoln, Nebraska) Sep 3, 1910


National Control is Thought Better.


He Aligns Himself With the Pinchot Faction in Congress on Conservation Plan.

ST.PAUL, Minn., Sept. 7 — The doctrine of the “new nationalism,” which ex-President Roosevelt enunciated in his speech at Osawatomie, Kan., last week, was set forth still more clearly in his speech before the National Conservation congress. He declared for government control of the country’s natural resources, and in so doing he placed himself directly against the advocates of “state rights,” whose opposition to the principles which he laid down has furnished the liveliest debates of the conservation congress.

“If it had not been for corporate interests, especially those which may be described as predatory, we would never have heard of this question of state’s rights,” he declared. And later he said:

The Real Issue

“It is not really a question of state against nation. It is really a question of special corporate interests against the people.”

He said the corporations were anxious to have the states take up the work that they might escape all effective control.

The outbursts of applause which greeted Colonel Roosevelt as he delivered his speech in the auditorium were as long and loud as any he has heard during his western trip. Minneapolis and St. Paul dropped work for the day and  turned out to see the colonel. The school children, with hundreds of flags, saluted him as he rode by, bands were played and banners were everywhere.

When Colonel Roosevelt arrived at the capital the presidential salute of twenty-one guns was given him.

Spoke at State Fair

Colonel Roosevelt, after his speech at the conservation congress, went to the state fair grounds, between this city and Minneapolis. At the fair grounds he addressed the largest crowd of the day.

Last night he attended a dinner given by Colonel Alex O. Brode of the Rough Riders and left for Milwaukee, where he is to spend today.

Departed From Notes

Colonel Roosevelt made a number of additions to the speech which he had prepared for the conservation congress and most of his interpolations were made to emphasize his stand for “new nationalism.”

In speaking of the federal control of corporations, he said:

“In addition to the fact that the federal government is better able to exact justice from the corporations, I also believe it is less appropriate in some gust of popular passion to do justice to them.

Justice to Corporations

“I should like to see the people, through the national government, give full justice to the corporations,” he said elsewhere, “but I do not want the national government to depend only upon the good will of the corporations to get justice for the people.”

In regard to the control of waterways by railroads, Colonel Roosevelt said:

“You people must not sit supinely and let the railroads gain control of the boat lines and then say that the men at the head of the railways are very bad people. If you leave it to them to get control of the boat lines, some of them are sure to do it, and it is to your interest that the best and ablest among them should do so. But do not let any of them do it except under the conditions which we lay down. In other words when you, of your own will, permit the rules of the game to be such that you are absolutely certain to get the worst of it at the hands of someone else, do not blame the other men.

“Change the rules of the game.”

The colonel advocated drainage of swamp and over flow lands chiefly through activity of the federal government. He defended the work done to establish national forests and recommended the establishment of a federal bureau of health. When he came to speak of the national conservation commission, he made what was interpreted here as a sharp thrust at Congressman James A. Tawney.

Warren Evening Mirror (Warren, Pennsylvania) Sep 7, 1910