Construction of Unit 1, Browns Ferry Nuclear Power Plant, Alabama, 1966. The site has three General Electric boiling water reactor (BWR) nuclear generating units. In 1974, the time of its initial operation, it was the largest nuclear plant in the world. It was the first nuclear plant in the world to generate more than 1 gigawatt of power.
On this day in 1859, abolitionist John Brown launched a raid on the federal armory in Harpers Ferry, Virginia. Brown and his gang intended to steal the weaponry and arm slaves in the South to begin a slave rebellion which would finally eradicate the institution of slavery from the United States. Brown was born in 1800 to an ardent anti-slavery family, and his mother believed her son to be a prophet, destined for greatness. Brown’s journey to fame began when, aged 37, he attended an abolition meeting in Cleveland. The experience radicalised Brown, and thenceforth he was devoted to organising an insurrection to rid the nation of the evil of slavery. After the passage of the controversial 1854 Kansas-Nebraska Act caused a rush to claim the Kansas territory for slavery or free labour, Brown and five of his sons joined the fight against proslavery forces. As an act of revenge for the attack on the abolitionist stronghold of Lawrence, Brown and his sons kiled five proslavery settlers in the Pottawatomie massacre. This experience confirmed in Brown’s mind the need for violence to purge America of slavery, and he began to raise money to support his planned slave uprising. The ‘Secret Six’ group of prominent abolitionists - including Gerritt Smith, who went on to help post Confederate President Jefferson Davis’s bail - funded the effort to gather 21 black and white men for the assault on Harpers Ferry. In the evening of October 16th, 1859, Brown’s group successfully captured the arsenal and took several hostages. However, the next day a local militia and a group of marines under the leadership of future Confederate general Robert E. Lee arrived to drive Brown out of the armory, and two days later the injured John Brown was captured. He was promptly found guilty of treason and murder, and was executed on December 2nd, 1859. John Brown’s legacy remains a contentious one. While his actions did not begin a slave uprising, they did stoke sectional tensions, which just two years later would break out into a war which resulted in the abolition of slavery, Brown’s ultimate goal. During the Civil War, Brown was celebrated in the Union army marching song ‘John Brown’s Body’, the tune of which was later used for ‘The Battle Hymn of the Republic’. However, Brown’s violent methods of achieving his goal raise the immortal question of whether violence is ever justified in the pursuit of freedom.
“I, John Brown, am now quite certain that the crimes of this guilty land will never be purged away but with blood.” - Brown’s prophetic written statement on the day of his execution
Today is the 147th anniversary of John Brown’s execution. In 1859, Brown led a raid on the federal armory at Harpers Ferry, to start a liberation movement among the slaves there. During the raid, he seized the armory; seven people were killed, and ten or more were injured. He intended to arm slaves with weapons from the arsenal, but the attack failed. Within 36 hours, Brown’s men had fled or been killed or captured by local pro-slavery farmers, militiamen, and U.S. Marines led by Robert E. Lee. He was tried for treason against the Commonwealth of Virginia, the murder of five men and inciting a slave insurrection.
Tomorrow, you will be taking the APUSH Advanced Placement Exam. Determining on what college you want to go to, at least a three is commonplace. I don’t know about you guys, but my biggest problem is going the length of an entire essay (for example if they want me to talk about Colonial Times through the Revolution, but they just write “1763-1781” I wouldn’t know what to write about). Furthermore, I’m going to list eras, what happening during them in chronological order and a very brief description of what they did. Keep in mind that many eras (such as the 1960’s) are important both in foreign policy and domestic affairs. I will divide them accordingly. The DBQ will not ask for specific years, but it’s better to have a general understanding of the era they are asking you about so you can throw in some “specific evidence” to get that 7-9 essay. This chart is also particularly helpful with the FRQ. Anyway, let’s begin.