Re: To Purge This Land With Blood, by Stephen B. O
Thanks Alan. I'll take some time to digest these. Maybe indigest. In one of my books there's an account of the activity at Harpers Ferry. The book, The Women's War in the South, the account is by Jennie Chambers. She was a school girl at that time and it's really an interesting take on it. I've also read some other stories from the residents during that time. Brown seemed to be the boogie (Freddie Kruger) man and he instilled fear in many of the citizens. He was ruthless and mean but very driven in his passion. We may see that as 'crazy' in today's terms. Sort of like Manson. Just my opinion, but he believed in what he was doing and he believed it was right.
Jennie Chambers mentions that at one time Brown was known to have worked or had a business in Springfield, Mass. and they believed since he knew of only 2 Federal armories, he struck at the one in the South.I don't know why she believed this. She may have been repeating something an adult said at the time.
Given what we've read of Browns actions, and his way of hauling men from their homes and other really ugly stuff, I can see how the girls at the Academy were in fear for the lives of their fathers and others. If there were ever a trail uncovered to lead the assistance in obtaining poison by slaves back to Brown it would be a real revelation. I'd think smaller groups would provide some rat poison on their own. Given these reports are showing up on a wider scale it isn't unreasonable to think there may have been a larger number of 'ugly' players in the movement. The Rev Howe seems to have been a Sunday reverand and the rest of the week he was preaching uprising. No wonder those in the South were getting a bad case of nerves. It's making a lot more sense now. It wasn't just for economics, or principle but also a bit of personal safety.