“The story of John Brown told through wax figures, music and animation”
The John Brown Wax Museum opened in Harpers Ferry in 1963. The museum is located in a building that actually existed in 1859 during Brown’s raid, and the block on which it stands became a protected National Historical Park shortly after the museum opened.
John Brown was an American abolitionist who believed that armed rebellion was the best way to overturn slavery. He advocated for action over talk, and in 1856, Brown and his supporters killed five pro-slavery settlers in the Pottawatomie massacre in Kansas. He’s best known for leading a raid on the federal armory at Harpers Ferry, Virginia (now West Virginia), where seven people were killed and ten were injured when Brown tried to arm slaves with stolen weapons. He was captured and tried for treason against the Commonwealth, murder and inciting a slave rebellion—he was found guilty on all counts and hanged.
The raid at Harpers Ferry may have helped fuel the fire for the South's secession from the Union a year later and the Civil War that followed. Brown’s position in history is still controversial, with some people seeing him as a hero while others label him a terrorist. Another distinction that Brown has is that he’s one of only two historical figures to have a wax museum exclusively devoted to his story (Jesus is the other one).
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John Brown Wax Museum
- Sun - Sat: 10:00 am - 4:30 pm
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