Case Open: 15.2 x 24.1 x 1.2 cm (6 x 9 1/2 x 1/2")
Case Closed: 15.2 x 12.1 x 1.8 cm (6 x 4 3/4 x 11/16")
Born Utica, New York
An avid reformer and philanthropist who used his own considerable fortune to support charitable causes, Gerrit Smith became one of the nation's leading abolitionists after joining the antislavery movement in 1835. Smith was a friend to radical abolitionist John Brown, who brought his family to live in a settlement that Smith had founded in the Adirondacks as a refuge for free blacks and fugitive slaves. In 1859 Smith secretly helped to finance Brown's raid on the federal arsenal at Harpers Ferry, but in the aftermath of the raid's failure, he denied knowledge of Brown's plans and briefly suffered a mental breakdown.