by Al Benson Jr.
Member, Board of Directors, Confederate Society of America
In my most recent article I dealt with terrorist John Brown and his dealings with a man named Hugh Forbes, who, as I now have found out, was a Forty-eighter revolutionary–and probably much more.
Forbes gets some mention in some of the books about John Brown. J. C. Furnas, in his book The Road To Harpers Ferry took note of Hugh Forbes. He commented: “To drill them (Brown’s “army) Old Brown had enlisted another odd fish,’Colonel’ Hugh Forbes, a British soldier of fortune who had quit the silk trade in Italy to turn guerilla with Garabaldi.” There were Forbes’ Forty-eiglhter bonafides right there.
Otto Scott in his book on John Brown, The Secret Six: The Fool As Martyr told us a bit more about “colonel” Forbes. He revealed that: “One man to whom such words sounded familiar and reallistic was Colonel Hugh Forbes, a former officer under Garabaldi in the Revolution of 1848. English-born, fluent in both French and Italian, Forbes was editor of a small Italian language newspaper in New York.He was also a fencing master and a translator at the New York Tribune–a paper that harbored many revolutionaries including Karl Marx–among its European correspondents. Interestingly enough Colonel Forbes had been brought to (Thomas Wentworth) Higginson’s attention by Senator Sumner, who had a wide acquaintance among European revolutionaries.” Forbes had written a two-volume book on military warfare published in Italy and he recommended his books as a manual for volunteer soldiers. He talked to John Brown about this and Brown agreed to pay him a hundred dollars a month to “summarize the lessons of Italy in English for Brown’s own projected volunteer ‘army’ …”
Writer Steve Byas did an excellent article in the New American Magazine back in February of 2017, Volume 33 No. 3 entitled John Brown’s Lethal Legacy. Mr. Byas noted how those that made up the Secret Six group that supported and financed John Brown were in favor of a violent revolution. He observed: “If Brown was going to lead a bloody revolution he would need a person with more military experience to help train his ‘army.’ The steady contributions of the Secret Six enabled Brown to hire Colonel Hugh Forbes for the job. Forbes had been an officer under Italian radical Giuseppi Garibaldi, a soldier in the Revolution of 1848. Born in England and fluent in Italian and French, and worked as a translator fror the New York Tribune. Among the European correspondents for the Tribune was Karl Marx, the author of the Communist Manifesto. The newspaper regularly provided space for the opinions of European revolutionaries. Forbes had been introduced to the Secret Six by Senator Sumner–a man who later became an actual communist and who was on a friendly basis with many of the revolutionaries in Europe. It is well establislhed from the history of communist revolutions elsewhere that Marxist revolutionaries seize upon issues such as slavery for their own purposes. If there is a ‘class struggle’ they exploit it, and if there isn’t such a conflict, they work to create one.”
Forbes had some problems with Brown’s plan for Harpers Ferry, but other abolitionists did also, Frederick Douglas among them. Forbes didn’t think Brown had enough men for such an effort. Steve Byas told us: “The disgruntled Forbes threatened the Secret Six with exposure of their role in Brown’s treasonous plans and this evidently caused a delay of the plan’s execution for several months from 1858 to 1859…Higginson was supportive of Brown, saying, ‘I am always willing to invest in treason.’ Sanborn’s sentiments were similar: ‘Treason will not be treason much longer, but patriotism’.”
So this is what you are dealing with–treasonous behavior trying to pretend it is somehow virtuous and patriotic. Sort of reminds you of what is going on now with the Harris/Biden regime.
This all fits in quite well with what Aurthur R. Thompson has told us in this revealing work To The Victor Go The Myths & Monuments. Of Forbes Mr. Thompson told us that: “Considering that all involved knew that Forbes was working for Mazzini, it is obvious that important Americans welcomed the involvement of a key Carbonari in their operations. It was not simply a plot by Brown; it involved many prominent people who had no problem involving the Carbonari–if they too were not already part of the Carbonari conspiracy, or lhigher up the ladder themselves. Here we see that conspiratorial forces worked both sides of the conflict; within the Brown initiative and the KGC. Supposedly, the two were in opposition, but in reality theiy were guided by one force linking back to the Carbonari network. Mr. Thompson also noted that Brown, in Kansas, “had veteran Forty-eighters Charles Kaiser, August Bondi, and Charles W. Lenhardt who rode with him in Kansas, and the Chartist Richard J. Hinton.”
So between Forbes and those Forty-eighters that helped him in Kansas, Brown was well supplied with leftist revolutionary assistance. Sort of makes you wonder what John Brown was really all about doesn’t it? Maybe down the road apiece we need to look at the backgrounds of some of those that supported Brown a llittle bit more.