Thaddeus Stephens on John Brown in 1859
. . . .A good joke about Harper's Ferry is laid to the door of Thaddeus Stephens. He was talking of the "invasion" at a Washington hotel, the other evening, with a Southern friend. Southern waxed hot, and declared that John Brown, "d--n him,["] deserved a dozen hangings. "Yes," said Thaddeus, in his solemn, drawling style, "you are right; he deserved hanging. He only brought 17 men; if he had brought thirty he would have settled the Slavery question forever."
Original Source: "Miscellaneous News," Independent Republican [Montrose, Pa.], Dec. 15, 1859, p. 2