John Brown

1800 - 1859

Photo of John Brown

Icon of person John Brown

John Brown (May 9, 1800 – December 2, 1859) was an American abolitionist leader. First reaching national prominence for his radical abolitionism and fighting in Bleeding Kansas, he was eventually captured and executed for a failed incitement of a slave rebellion at Harpers Ferry preceding the American Civil War. A man of strong religious convictions, Brown believed he was "an instrument of God",: 248  raised up to strike the death blow to American slavery, a "sacred obligation".: 189  Brown was the leading exponent of violence in the American abolitionist movement:: 426  he believed that violence was necessary to end American slavery, since decades of peaceful efforts had failed. Brown said repeatedly that in working to free the enslaved he was following the Golden Rule, as well as the U.S. Read more on Wikipedia

Since 2007, the English Wikipedia page of John Brown has received more than 237,289 page views. His biography is available in 48 different languages on Wikipedia (up from 45 in 2019). John Brown is the 124th most popular social activist (up from 136th in 2019), the 1,315th most popular biography from United States (up from 1,399th in 2019) and the 12th most popular American Social Activist.

John Brown was a militant abolitionist who advocated and practiced armed insurrection as the only way to overthrow the institution of slavery in the United States.

Memorability Metrics

  • 240k

    Page Views (PV)

  • 69.27

    Historical Popularity Index (HPI)

  • 48

    Languages Editions (L)

  • 2.35

    Effective Languages (L*)

  • 5.63

    Coefficient of Variation (CV)

Page views of John Browns by language


Among social activists, John Brown ranks 124 out of 544Before him are Pier Gerlofs Donia, Georgy Gapon, Wat Tyler, Alfred Naujocks, Sergey Nechayev, and Vesna Vulović. After him are Denis Mukwege, Marsha P. Johnson, Maria Altmann, Betty Williams, Frederick Douglass, and Manuela Sáenz.

Most Popular Social Activists in Wikipedia

Go to all Rankings


Among people born in 1800, John Brown ranks 13Before him are France Prešeren, James Clark Ross, John Edward Gray, Lars Levi Laestadius, Jean-Baptiste Dumas, and Ludwig Ritter von Köchel. After him are Princess Louise of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg, Paul Frederick, Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, William Parsons, 3rd Earl of Rosse, Jacques Paul Migne, Infanta Maria Francisca of Braganza, and Prince Felix of Schwarzenberg. Among people deceased in 1859, John Brown ranks 18Before him are Louis Spohr, Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna of Russia, Bettina von Arnim, Archduke John of Austria, Thomas De Quincey, and Isambard Kingdom Brunel. After him are Stephanie of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen, John Austin, Robert Stephenson, Marceline Desbordes-Valmore, Abd al-Rahman of Morocco, and Louis Poinsot.

Others Born in 1800

Go to all Rankings

Others Deceased in 1859

Go to all Rankings

In United States

Among people born in United States, John Brown ranks 1,315 out of 15,968Before him are Alan Greenspan (1926), Neil Diamond (1941), Anthony Bourdain (1956), Rene Russo (1954), Cordell Hull (1871), and Karen Grassle (1942). After him are Count Basie (1904), George Benson (1943), Jack Dempsey (1895), Aaron Spelling (1923), George Minot (1885), and Stephanie Kwolek (1923).

Among SOCIAL ACTIVISTS In United States

Among social activists born in United States, John Brown ranks 12Before him are Jimmy Hoffa (1913), Emily Greene Balch (1867), Jane Addams (1860), Susan B. Anthony (1820), Angela Davis (1944), and Bugsy Siegel (1906). After him are Marsha P. Johnson (1945), Frederick Douglass (1818), Betty Ford (1918), Edward Snowden (1983), Fred Phelps (1929), and Mickey Cohen (1913).