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The Insurrection at Harper's Ferry

Click on the MEDIA ITEMS below for more information


Baltimore, Oct. 18th, 1859—8.30 P. M.

Thomas H. Parsons,
Washington, D. C.

How many troops will you have ? Will there be any artillery? Let us know these facts at earliest possible moment. Don't let any more cars be sent than you can avoid, as our trains will be heavy from Baltimore to Harper's Ferry.


(Supposed 18th Oct.)

Telegram to Washington.

Insurrectionists have been driven into the Engine House, where they shelter themselves and hold Lewis Washington, H. P. Dangerfield, M. Alsdale and other persons as security for their own preservation; about 10 persons have been killed, among whom is Fountain Beckham, Ag't of the B. & O. R. R. Co., and 2 members of the Martinsburg soldiers. A large military force is here under Col. R. W. Baylor ; one of the rioters is wounded and has been taken prisoner. He has made a clean breast of the origin of the insurrection. A man named Brown, and three sons of Kansas notoriety are at the head. There were only 22 of them at first, some of whom have been killed, others have left. The people are terribly excited and threats are made of killing all in the morning. Col. Lee has assumed command. One of the wounded insurgents states that the object was to rob paymaster's vaults and release the slaves. There has not been more than 20 negroes under arms. The troops are on guard and will remain so until morning. Brown has been living near the Ferry for 6 months, under the assumed name of Smith; one of his sons has been teaching school under the name of Cook, he has escaped.


To Officer in Command at Harper's Ferry :
Relay House, October 18, 1859—8 A. M.

I am here with 90 men, waiting for train to Harper's Ferry ; make no terms with insurgents before I reach you.


Page #:

B. H. Richardson, Annapolis


Collection Location:
Western Maryland Room, WCFL

Original Size:
22 x 14 cms

Maryland. General Assembly. Senate, 1860.

Harpers Ferry (W. Va.), History; John Brown's Raid, 1859.

Harpers Ferry (WV), Washington County (Md.), 1859

Western Maryland Regional Library
100 South Potomac Street
Hagerstown, Maryland 21740

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