Summit County revered him. The South reviled him. There were few in 19th America that didn't have an opinion about Ohio's most famous abolitionist, John Brown.
On Feb. 8, Dave Allison will speak on John Brown, his local connections, and his raid on Harper's Ferry at the Peninsula Library, 6105 Riverview Road. Sponsored by the Cuyahoga Valley Civil War Round Table, the 7:30 p.m. talk is free and open to the public.
Allison is a former vice-president of the round table, and currently serves as vice-president of the Lafayette Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution. He served as the chapter's president for six years. He's been a member of numerous heritage and historical groups throughout his life.
Allison has spoken to many groups on a variety of topics, including Confederate General Jeb Stuart, General Stonewall Jackson, Mosby's Rangers, and the Unknown Monuments at Gettysburg.
He has been researching John Brown for 15 years. Ten years ago, he gave a tour of Harper's Ferry for family members of the Daughters of the American Revolution during their national convention in Washington D.C.
Allison saaid Harper's Ferry was one of the "triggers" of the Civil War.
"The raid happened in 1859. A lot of today's historians feel this was one of the pushes towards the Civil War," he said.