Article Title

Kansas Fruits.


Newspaper Title

New-York Daily Tribune

Publication Date


Publication Place

New York, New York

Event Topic

John Brown

Political Party



free state


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Those who are now straining every nerve to make party capital out of Old Brown, are careful not to look back so far as to see how and why he became a monomaniac.

Document Type

Article (Journal or Newsletter)

Full Text Transcription

Those who are now straining every nerve to make party capital out of Old Brown, are careful not to look back so far as to see how and why he became a monomaniac. They look away from the fact that his attempt to get up an insurrection in Virginia is a legitimate consequence of the Kansas- Nebraska bill, and, but for the passage of that measure, would never have happened. President Pierce and Judge Douglas are thus the real authors of the late insurrection. After them, scarcely less guilty are Senators Badger of North Carolina, Pearce ofMaryland, and the great body of Southern Whigs who followed their lead; and following, in close and indivisible conjunction, come the whole body of Southern Democrats of every hue and description. There are Senators Mason and Hunter; Representatives Letcher, Bocock, and their associates, from Virginia; Toombs, and Stephens, and Cobb, of Georgia; Keitt, and Brooks, and Butler, of South Carolina; Brown and Jeff. Davis of Mississippi, Clay of Alabama, and the whole throng of their associates, whose names need not be enumerated. These are the real guilty parties in this transaction. They are the true authors of this last insurrection, and, as such, are the men to be held to account for its results, present and future. But while these are the men of the South, and such as Toucey & Co. from the North, who are the guilty parties, there are others who are free from all implication with it. The individuals who may wash their hands of all blame and all responsibility for this event, are those few brave men of the South who resisted that fatal measure, on the ground of the mischief it would work to the South; such as Bell, and Etheredge, and Cullom of Tennessee, and Hunt ofLouisiana.These men can point to their record with pride and with triumph at this moment. While the great body of Southern legislators and statesmen stand implicated before the country as being the proximate authors of the recent tragedy at Harper's Ferry, these few truly brave and enlightened guardians of Southern tranquillity can point to their arguments and their example as those which, if followed by considerate men, would have spared the country the details, and the South the dangers, it seems barely to have escaped. Sharing in this high position, stand the whole body of Anti-Nebraska men from the North, who resisted that measure of iniquity. That its fruits have returned to plague its inventors is no more than was predicted, no more than was to have been expected.

John Brown is a natural , born on the soil of Kansas, out of the germinating the great content on the soil of that Territory . Before the day of Kansas outrages and oppression, no such person as Osawatamie Brown existed. No such person could have existed. he was born of rapine, and cruelty, and murder. Revenge rocked his cradle, disciplined his arm, and nerved his soul. We so not mean to say that revenge alone was the motive-power that actuated him. His moral nature was roused, and its instincts and logic backed his determination with a profound power. But Kansas deeds, Kansas experiences. Kansas discipline, created John Brown as entirely and completely as the French Revolution created Napoleon Bonaparte. He is as much the fruit of Kansas as Washington was the fruit of our own Revolution.

Let those, then, who have reproaches to heap upon the authors of the Harper's Ferry bloody tumult and general Southern fright, go back to the true cause of it all. Let them not blame blind and inevitable instruments in the work nor falsely malign those who are in no wise implicated, directly or indirectly; but let them patiently investigate the true source whence this demonstration arose, and then bestow their curses and their anathemas accordingly. It is childish and absurd for Governor Wise to seize and sit astride the wounded, painting body of Old Brown, and think he has got the villain who set this mischief on foot. By no means. The head conspirators against the peace of Virginia are ex-President Franklin Pierce and Senator Douglas. These are the parties he should apprehend, confine, and try, for causing this insurrection. Next to them, he should seize upon Senators Mason and Hunter of Virginia, as accessories. Let him follow up by apprehending every supporter of the Nebraska bill, and when he shall have brought them all to condign punishment, he will have discharged his duty, but not till then.

As to this whole tumultuous raid of subsequent excited volunteers and fussy officials against a crowd of unarmed and frightened negroes, with this malicious effort to fix criminality or blame upon innocent parties to subserve personal or party ends, we can only regard it with contempt. There is nothing in it worthy of any other emotion. It has neither sense, nor dignity, nor honesty. Old Brown is simply a spark of a great fire kindled by short-sighted mortals. When Old Virginia had roused herself in the persons of her Governor and Senators, and in the might of her military power, and had extinguished that spark, by getting Old Brown under, why, that was the end. That was all there was to be done. The subsequent valor and activity, the epaulettes and lace, and horses and sabers, afterward displayed, were so much sheer surplus, and the exhibition only provocative of ridicule. The other branch of the display, in pretending to fix the responsibility of the outbreak upon the Republicans generally, we dismiss with the exposition we have already made. There is no just responsibility resting anywhere, no just attribution of causes anywhere, for this violent attempt, that does not fall directly upon the South itself. It has deliberately challenged and wantonly provoked the elements that have concentered and exploded.

Edited/Proofed by

Entered by James Cash. Proofed by Beatrice Burton




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Event Location


Kansas Fruits.

Those who are now straining every nerve to make party capital out of Old Brown, are careful not to look back so far as to see how and why he became a monomaniac.