On October 15, 2009, the Historical and Theatrical Trial Society presented the trial of United States v. John Brown at the Missouri Theatre Center of Arts.

johnbrown-portraitThe HISTORICAL AND THEATRICAL TRIAL SOCIETY (HATTS) at the University of Missouri School of Law promotes thinking and reflection on the process of law by holding trials that never were. HATTS, created three years ago by Professor Stephen D. Easton (now Dean at the University of Wyoming College of Law), first presented “United States v. Meriwether Lewis and Silas Goodrich” at the new Elwood L. Thomas Inn of Court. Since then, HATTS participants have tried Missouri’s Governor Crittenden for his role in the assassination of Jesse James and made sure that Al Capone was finally prosecuted for the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre. On October 15th, in a change of venue from the Law School Courtroom to the bright lights of the Missouri Theatre of the Arts, HATTS puts John Brown on trial for his role in the murder of five pro-slavery men at the Pottawatomie Creek Massacre. Brown (freedom fighter to some, 19th century terrorist to others) was never tried for these crimes. Now, a jury of twelve, with a guest federal judge presiding, will decide whether Brown will be held accountable.

Resources about John Brown have been compiled on the Mid-Missouri Civil War Project here.