"Posterity will owe everlasting thanks to John Brown for lifting up once more to the gaze of a nation grown fat and flabby on the garbage of lust and oppression, a true standard of heroic philanthropy, and each coming generation will pay its installment of the debt. . . . John Brown saw slavery through no mist or cloud, but in a light of infinite brightness, which left no one of its ten thousand horrors concealed." Frederick Douglass

Search This Blog & Links

Translate

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Biography:
The Stutler-Boyer Disconnection

The preeminent John Brown documentary scholar and collector is Boyd B. Stutler, who died in 1970, and whose papers are now held in the archives of the State of West Virginia. Although Stutler intended to write a biography of Brown from the 1950s, the work was never completed. There are probably a number of reasons for what Stutler referred to as his “dalliance,” that proved to undermine his biographical effort. But it is also probably true that the rise of other John Brown writers in late 1950s and 1960s further discouraged him from completing his work. Most notable in this regard were Truman Nelson, Richard O. Boyer, and Stephen B. Oates, all of which brought notable works about John Brown to publication. Of these three, however, Richard O. Boyer’s correspondence with Stutler is the slightest in the Stutler Collection. Furthermore, of these three successful authors, Stutler—who was typically generous in his support of researchers—offered little or no assistance to Boyer.

[The complete entry is available only in the forthcoming book, John Brown: Emancipator]

No comments: