The Execution of John Brown
Original Author: Unknown
Created: post-1859
Medium: Drawing
Publisher: Virginia Military Institute Archives

The Execution of John Brown

A detachment of cadets from the Virginia Military Institute (seen in the foreground wearing flat caps called wheel hats) stand at attention as the abolitionist John Brown awaits execution on December 2, 1859, after his unsuccessful raid on the federal arsenal at Harpers Ferry, Virginia (now West Virginia). To help quell the fear of another uprising, the superintendent of VMI sent a select group of cadets to provide additional security at the hanging in Charles Town.