Planned by the Gilder Lehrman Institute in collaboration with N-YHS.
October 16, 2009 marks the 150th anniversary of John Brown's doomed raid on the federal arsenal at Harpers Ferry, Virginia in 1859. Brown, an ardent abolitionist who believed in racial equality, embraced violence as a means to end slavery. Executed in 1859, he has been both vilified as a murderer and celebrated as a martyr. This exhibition of rare materials from the Gilder Lehrman Collection and N-YHS explores Brown's beliefs and activities at a critical juncture in American history and invites us to ponder the struggle for civil rights down to the present.