Monday, June 18, 2007

A visit to the John Brown home

John Brown, the great abolitionist, had a house in Akron. It is now a museum and is conveniently located across the street from the Perkins Mansion, another museum dedicated to one of Akron's founding fellows.

I had the opportunity to stop at the John Brown House last Friday. It was a beautiful sunny day in Akron, not too hot and the sky was not overcast -- perfect for trying out my new digital camera.

Here we see the front porch, curiously empty. What would have been on that porch during John Brown's time there? Did abolitionists sit and plot in the cool of the evening? Was there a rocker, perhaps, or some wooden barrels to sit upon? Well, it turns out that the porch was not a part of the house during John Brown's time there. To see what it looked like during his tenure, click here.

A huge work crew was on hand, sprucing up the grounds, painting the white picket fence, and clearing out the attic of the carriage house. There were quite a few nice antique items spread out on the lawn. I asked one of the workers if there was going to be a yard sale, but she didn't know what was to become of the assorted suitcases, furniture and so on.

Leaning up against the carriage house, I found a carved sign indicating that John Brown had planted one of the maple trees in 1844.

Another carving -- this one out of wood -- featured this very fine bear. He looked like he might have been part of a coat rack at one time.

For information about the Perkins Mansion and the John Brown Home, you can go to this Summit County Historical Society's web page, where you will find tour information, ticket prices and so on.

To the side of the house, Let's Grow Akron has a huge vegetable garden planted. This is a wonderful group that helps create community gardens throughout Akron. They make use of empty lots and abandoned spaces. Many of them are planted and worked by children. The food grown is used by the community.

At the John Brown House garden, the sprinklers were going strong,. Akron has had precious little of the west stuff these past few weeks.

Rain, rain come again soon -- maybe even this afternoon!

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