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“‘ [340] as a stove-pipe ’ and many such. While the Judge read his decision on the points of exception which had been submitted, Brown sat very firm, with lips tightly compressed, but with no appearance of affectation of sternness. He was like a block of stone. When the clerk directed him to stand and say why sentence should not be passed upon him,.he rose and leaned slightly forward, his hands resting on the table. He spoke timidly — hesitatingly, indeed — and in a voice singularly gentle and mild. But his sentences came confused from his mouth, and he seemed to be wholly unprepared to speak at this time.1 Types can give no intimation of the soft and tender tones, yet calm and manly withal, that filled the Court room, and, I think, touched the hearts of many who had come only to rejoice at the heaviest blow their victim was to suffer.”

This is what he said:

John Brown's last speech.

I have, may it please the Court, a few words to say.

In the first place, I deny every thing but what I have all along admitted — the design on my part to free the slaves. I intended certainly to have made a clear thing of that matter, as I did last winter, when I went into Missouri, and there took slaves without the snapping of a gun on either side, moved them through the country, and finally left them in Canada. I designed to have done the same tiling again, on a larger scale. That was all I intended. I never did intend murder,


1 It was expected that all the prisoners would be condemned and executed on the same day. Hence, John Brown was taken by surprise.

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