Last week I discussed a southern newspaper that argued that only legal means should be used against abolitionists who threatened southern communities. Immediately after the Harpers Ferry Raid, however, this newspaper had a different perspective. The editor was not concerned about abolitionists invading the South, but rather argued in late October 1859 that Harpers Ferry would actually reduce sectional tensions. “We think that a great deal of good will result from the Harper’s Ferry affair – much more than could have been anticipated,” as the Fayetteville Observer explained. Only “fanatics” in the North supported Brown’s raid. The Observer also argued that Harpers Ferry would split the Republican party. An editorial in an Indiana newspaper was one of “many…signs of conservative Republicans [who were] cutting loose from the ultra fragments of their party.” While the Observer later admitted that Brown’s raid had not “heal[ed] the sectional breach,” it is still important to consider this newspaper’s initial reaction.