In October 1859 Brown and
eighteen of his followers took over the federal arsenal. This was a
place were weapons were kept at Harper's Ferry, Virginia. Brown
thought the slaves in the countryside would come and help him. He
thought the slaves would take the guns from the arsenal and go out and
punish their masters. No slaves came. A group of U. S. Marines led by
Colonel Robert E. Lee came. They attacked the arsenal and killed ten
of Brown's men. Brown was captured.
The caption on this illustration which appeared in 'Harper's
Weekly' in November 1859 reads: "The Harper's Ferry Insurrection.--The
U.S. Marines storming the Engine-House.--Insurgents firing through
holes in the wall."
Image Credit: Historic
Photo Collection, Harpers Ferry NHP.