Springfield History Exhibits

John Brown, Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War

Second Floor

Lyman & Merrie Wood Museum of Springfield History

John Brown, Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War

This exhibition explores how the years John Brown spent in Springfield strengthened his commitment to the abolitionist cause, the story of his raid on Harpers Ferry and the history of the Free Church of Springfield, later renamed St. John’s Congregational Church in his honor. Highlights include:

  • Brown’s desk in which he hid runaway slaves
  • Wood and slate taken from his fort at Harpers Ferry
  • Hobnail safe used in his Springfield wool business
  • His rocking chair, clay tobacco pipe and surveyor’s rule
  • Documents signed by Brown


Sponsored by Mass Humanities, a state-based affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, and Hampden Savings Foundation, Inc., the charitable foundation of Hampden Bank.

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