Digital History>eXplorations>John Brown: Hero or Terrorist?> John Brown in Kansas>John Brown to His Family

John Brown to his Family, September 7, 1865

Source: John Brown Papers, Kansas State Historical Society, Topeka, Kansas

I have one moment to write you to say that I am yet alive that Jason & family were well yesterday John; & family I hear are well; (he being yet a prisoner. On the morning of the 30th Aug an attack was made by the ruffians on Osawatomie numbering some 400 by whose scouts our dear Fredk was shot dead without warning he supposing them to be Free State men as near as we can learn. One other man a Cousin of Mr Adair was murdered by them about the same time that Fredk was killed & one badly wounded at the same time. At this time I was about 3 miles off where I had some 14 or 15 men over night that I had just enlisted to serve under me as regulars. There I collected as well as I could with some 12 or 15 more & in about 3/4 of an Hour attacked them from a wood with thick undergroth., with this force we threw them into confusion for about 15 or 20 Minuets [sick during which time we killed & wounded from. 70 to 80 of the enemy as they say & then we escaped as well as we could with one killed while escaping; Two or Three wounded; & as many more missing. Four or Five Free State men were butchered during the day in all. Jason fought bravely by my side during the fight & escaped with me he being unhurt. I was struck by a partly spent, Grape, Canister, or Rifle shot which bruised me some but did not injure me seriously. "Hitherto the Lord hath helped me" not withstanding my afflictions. Things now seem rather quiet just now: but what another Hour will bring I cannot say . . . .






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