Page 2 of a letter from John Brown, Jr. (Ohio) to Alexander M. Ross (Canada).
Transcript: Rohnerville, Cal. Dec. 15th 1887.
Master Garibaldi Ross,
Your father has requested me to tell you the story of my life at or recollections of, Kennedy Farm, during the Summer of 1859.
My father and two brothers, Owen Watson and Oliver, John Henry Kagi, and Jerry G. Anderson went down to Harper’s Ferry some time in June to prepare for and get a place that would be quiet and secluded where they could receive their freight and men. They rented Kennedy Farm situated about five miles north of Harper’s Ferry as that seemed in all respects perfectly adapted to their purpose. The house stood several rods back from the public road, . . . It was far enough from neighbors to seclude us, in a quite woodsy place, less than a half mile from the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Maryland, about two miles from Antietam and six miles from Sharpsburg & afterwards noted battlegrounds during the War. After my father had selected his place, he found out, like men usually do, whenever they attempt to do any thing, that he would be obliged to have some woman to help him, to stand between him and the curiosity of outsiders, a sort of “outside guard,” to conceal his movements, and ward off suspicion. So he sent Oliver back to North Elba after Mother and I, never dreaming that Mother would not go, Oliver’s girl wife, Martha and I went back with him, Martha was sixteen and I was fifteen years old then. My brother Watson and William and Dauphin Thompson who (they were brothers of his wife and to our brother in law Henry Thompson, (who was wounded at the Battle of Black Jack, Kansas,) followed after us in August, Watson left a young wife and boy baby three weeks old, He had never intended going but concluded to go and take my brother Salmons’ place, when it was decided that it was not best for Salmon to go, William Thompson also left a young wife but no children, “Earth to them was full of promise, Home and friends and life were dear,” They were all young men the oldest less than twenty five years old. They had no self interest in the matter. No thought of glory or honor entered their minds, They went down there “to do to others, as they would have others do to them,” to “tell Pharaoh to let my people go.”