Scenic USA - New York

John Brown's Farm SHS

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John Brown's Farm - New York

Photos by Terri Prepelka

     The home and gravesite of famed abolitionist John Brown are preserved in up-state New York among the Adirondack Mountains near Lake Placid. This simple farm in North Elba was home to the Brown family for ten years prior the attempted raid at Harper's Ferry. John Brown Gravesite Tried for treason and hanged for his crimes, John Brown requested his body be returned to his New York farm. Today, the site is recognized as a National Historic Landmark and a New York State Historic Site.
     Still a controversial figure, historians agree that John Brown played a major part in starting the Civil War. Here at the Lake Placid gravesite, Brown is viewed to some as a heroic martyr, while others refer to him as America's first terrorist.
     During his stay at the North Elba farm, John Brown Sculpture John Brown grew increasingly dissatisfied with the abolitionist's movements at the time. John Brown was a great proponent of action, which led to the Pottawatomie Creek Massacre in Kansas. Hoping to keep Kansas a free-state, Brown and his supporters killed five pro-slavery southerners in 1856. Active in the underground railway, Brown also helped freed African-American slaves set up farms near his home in the North Elba area.
     In 1859, Brown hoped to lead an insurrection among southern slaves. Attempting to secure arms for this cause from the Harper's Ferry Federal Arsenal, Brown led a daring raid on the night of October 16, 1959. His bold move galvanized the nation, but ultimately cost Brown and his followers their lives.
     During the Civil War, John Brown's family moved away from New York to California. In 1870, the John Brown Association purchased the farmland and gravesite, and conveyed the property to New York State in 1890.

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