Mar 10, 2011 - Sale 2239

Sale 2239 - Lot 59

Price Realized: $ 4,800
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 7,000 - $ 10,000
THE TRIAL & EXECUTION OF JOHN BROWN (SLAVERY AND ABOLITION.) DOUGLASS, FREDERICK---JOHN BROWN. Frederick Douglass' Paper. Three issues: November 4th, and 25th and December 9th, 1859. Uniform bi-folium; a few closed tears to the margins; creases where folded, with a couple of words lost at the conjunction of the folds; paper evenly toned; some foxing. Rochester, 1859

Additional Details

These copies of Frederick Douglass' Paper report the aftermath of the raid, the trial and the subsequent execution of Brown, beginning just weeks after the raid, with the first issue of November 4th 1859. Under the heading, "Insurrection in Virginia," subtitled "Conversation with the Noble Old Hero," half of the front page contains an interview with Brown conducted by Senator Mason of Virginia, ex-Virginia Congressman Charles J. Faulkner, and Congressman Clement Vallandigham of Ohio. There were others, including newspapermen present and their occasional comments are noted as well. "Upon what principle do you justify your acts?" asked a bystander. "By the Golden Rule. I pity the poor in bondage. That is why I am here," replied Brown. [Other questions attempted to pin Brown down, to tie him to others in the abolitionist community.] Page three carries an account of the trial, as well as Brown's address to the court following his conviction, and an entire sermon on Brown and the raid by Henry Ward Beecher. The second Paper continues to report on the trial and sentencing of Brown, and prints a long article by Lydia Maria Child, as well as a report on several other insurrections. The front page carries a lead article by William James Watkins, who has exceptionally strong words for someone who had asked why the victims of oppression did not "make the whole land ring from center to circumference with a peal of indignant protest?" (had he not been listening?) The third and last issue, the inner pages printed with mourning borders in black, deals with the final hours of John Brown. There are Brown's last words, an interview with his wife and Frederick Douglass's eulogy, "Yes the Old Hero is gone. . . and when shall we see his like again? . . . May his spirit still be permitted to watch over and inspire the less heroic soldiers of this war for freedom until the ushering in of that not distant day of universal emancipation." These papers provide a unique opportunity to read and almost hear the voices of the abolitionist cause, on the sad occasion of the passing of its martyr.