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93 results for Border ruffians:
Cartoon, Liberty, the Fair Maid of Kansas in the Hands of the Border Ruffians
Authors: No authors specified.
Date: Undated
This cartoon depicts William L. Marcy, James Buchanan, Franklin Pierce, Lewis Cass, and Stephen Douglas harassing Liberty, the representation of Kansas Territory. A former U.S. senator from New York, Marcy was a leader of the conservative Democrats, with pro-Southern leanings much like those of presidents Pierce and Buchanan; Marcy served as secretary of war (1845-1849) under James K. Polk and secretary of state (1853-1857) under President Pierce, during the worst of the Kansas troubles.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Buchanan, James, 1791-1868; Cartoons; Douglas, Stephen Arnold, 1813-1861; Pierce, Franklin, 1804-1869; Political cartoons


Surveying Equipment
Authors: No authors specified.
Date: 1845-1855
Albert D. Searl used this equipment to survey Kansas Territory town sites in 1854. Lawrence was surveyed on Sept. 25th and Topeka on Dec. 20th. Searl's efforts to set town limits for free-staters in Lawrence were met with violence from pro-slavery forces nearby. Searl would later survey Manhattan, Osawatomie, Burlington, & El Dorado.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Burlington, Kansas Territory; Coffey County, Kansas Territory; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Free state; Free state cause; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Manhattan, Kansas Territory; Miami County, Kansas (see also Lykins County, Kansas Territory); Objects; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Riley County, Kansas Territory; Searl, Albert D.; Skirmishing; Surveyors; Topeka, Kansas; Topeka, Kansas Territory; Violence


Letter, Tho Sherwood to Friend Woodward
Authors: Sherwood, Thomas
Date: July 5, 1855
Thomas Sherwood wrote to Friend Woodward of the now-famous confrontation between Governor Andrew Reeder and Benjamin F. Stringfellow. According to Sherwood, the two men were only saved from shooting one another by the intervention of Reeder's private secretary, John Halderman, and the U.S. District Attorney for Kansas Territory, Andrew Isacks.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Bourbon County, Kansas Territory; Halderman, John Adams; Isacks, Andrew Jackson; Johnson County, Kansas Territory; Kansas Territory. Legislature; Pawnee, Kansas Territory; Reeder, Andrew H. (Andrew Horatio), 1807-1864; Shawnee Mission; Sherwood, Thomas; Stringfellow, Benjamin F.


Diary, Franklin L. Crane
Authors: Crane, Franklin L.
Date: February 23, 1855 - September 29, 1856
The entries pertaining to Kansas Territory began on page 18, with Franklin Crane leaving his home in Easton, Pennsylvania with his son, Franklin Jr. He described their journey to Kansas and their initial impressions and travels while in the territory. In June 1855, he returned to Easton to sell his property so he could then return to Kansas. The later entries began in September of 1856 and described tensions in Topeka with efforts to build a fort and rumors of armed Missourians in the area.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Brown, George W. (George Washington), 1820-1915; Crane, Franklin Loomis; Davis County, Kansas Territory; Easton, Pennsylvania; Geary County, Kansas; Geary, John White, 1819-1873; Holliday, Cyrus Kurtz, 1826-1900; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Lecompton, Kansas Territory; Miami County, Kansas (see also Lykins County, Kansas Territory); Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Pawnee, Kansas Territory; Shawnee County, Kansas Territory; Tecumseh, Kansas Territory; Topeka Association; Topeka, Kansas Territory; Town shares; Travel; Updegraff, E.; Weather


Letter, T. [Thomas] C. Wells to Dear Mother, [Sarah Elizabeth Clarke Wells]
Authors: Wells, Thomas Clarke
Date: April 1, 1855
Born and raised in Rhode Island, twenty-three-year-old Thomas C. Wells apparently was a reluctant Kansas immigrant; his initial ambivalence was reflected in his first letter from Providence, RI, March 12, 1855, where he wrote: "I may yet see it best to return [home from Boston] and not go [to Kansas] at all." This, Clarke's first letter from "the far famed Kanzas Territory," was written from Topeka, but describes the journey from the boarder via Lawrence and reported is intention to "start for Big Blue, where Mr. Goodnow is tomorrow." Part of the journey was made in the company of some well-armed Missourians "who were going to Lawrence to vote," presumably in the March 30 legislative election. All Clarke's extensive correspondence from KT (March 24, 1855 to October 19, 1860) was published in 1936 in the KHQ and is now available digitally at http://www.kshs.org/library/khq/1936/36_2_wells.htm.

Keywords: Big Blue, Kansas Territory; Border ruffians; Elections; Goodnow, Isaac T., 1814-1894; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Manhattan, Kansas Territory; Missourians; Page's Hotel; Shawnee Indians; Topeka, Kansas Territory; Wells, Thomas Clarke; Westport, Missouri


Letter, C. Robinson to Rev. E. E. Hale
Authors: Robinson, Charles
Date: April 9, 1855
Charles Robinson, writing from Lawrence, K. T. to Edward Everett Hale, commented that Free State supporters were forming military companies in response to perceived "outrageous conduct" by Missourians during the March 30, 1855, election of representatives for the territorial legislature. Robinson asked Hale to send two hundred Sharp's rifles and two cannon for the use of Lawrence settlers.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Cannons; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Elections; Free state; Guns; Hale, Edward Everett, 1822-1909; Kansas Territory. Legislature; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Militia; New England Emigrant Aid Company; Proslavery activities; Reeder, Andrew H. (Andrew Horatio), 1807-1864; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Sharps rifles; Weapons (see also Guns)


Statement, William Phillips, Sworn before Samuel Lecompte, Chief Justice of Kansas Territory
Authors: Phillips, William
Date: May 23, 1855
William Phillips, a Leavenworth resident, testified before Chief Justice Samuel Lecompte and described an incident in which Phillips, an anti-slavery proponent, was tarred and feathered by a group of Weston, Missouri pro-slavery supporters.

Keywords: Antislavery; Border ruffians; Chief justice; Lecompte, Samuel D. (Samuel Dexter), 1814-1888; Phillips, William; Proslavery; Proslavery activities


Letter, E. Nute, Jr. to Rev. E. E. Hale
Authors: Nute, Ephraim
Date: October 3, 1855
Ephraim Nute, a Unitarian minister writing from Lawrence, K. T. to Edward Everett Hale, described the natural environment, economic developments, politics, religious affairs, and daily life in Kansas Territory. Nute commented on the need for more saw mills, efforts to construct a church, prospects for "free-thinking Christianity," and the possibility of armed conflict in the territory.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Churches; Construction; Daily life; Economic development; Hale, Edward Everett, 1822-1909; Houses; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Nute, Ephraim; Religion; Sawmills; Timber; Unitarian churches; Violence


Militia Commission, issue by James H. Lane to Joel Grover
Authors: Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866
Date: November 27, 1855
This printed document, headed with the name "James H. Lane," announced the election and certification of Joel Grover as colonel of the 6th Regiment, First Brigade of Kansas Volunteers, raised "to defend the City of Lawrence from threatened destruction by foreign invaders." It is dated November 27, 1855, and signed "J. H. Lane," general commanding.

Keywords: Border ruffians; First Brigade of Kansas Volunteers; Free state militia; Grover, Joel; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Militia; Wakarusa War, November-December 1855


Letter, S. C. P. [Samuel Clarke Pomeroy] to Dr. [Thomas H.] Webb
Authors: Pomeroy, S. C. (Samuel Clarke), 1816-1891
Date: December 19, 1855
Samuel Pomeroy, writing from Boonville, Missouri, to Dr. Thomas H. Webb, secretary of the New England Emigrant Aid Company, described a dinner he attended in Lexington, Missouri with pro-slavery Missourians who had participated in the Wakarusa War. Pomeroy expressed the opinion that the Missourians drank too much alcohol but he reported that he had been allowed to express his anti-slavery views to the group. Pomeroy indicated that the Missourians were particularly upset with Governor Wilson Shannon's intervention in the Wakarusa War.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Missouri; New England Emigrant Aid Company; Pomeroy, S. C. (Samuel Clarke), 1816-1891; Proslavery perspective; Shannon, Wilson, 1802-1877; Violence; Wakarusa War, November-December 1855


Excerpt from letter, I. T. G [Isaac Goodnow] to [unknown]
Authors: Goodnow, Isaac T., 1814-1894
Date: January/February 1856
In the wake of the Wakarusa War, Isaac Goodnow wrote to an unknown recipient regarding recent skirmishes and negotiations between proslavery and free state supporters. According to Goodnow, Governor Shannon had demanded that the free state men surrender their Sharp's rifles and obey the laws of the "bogus" legislature. Governor Robinson had responded, telling his men to "keep the rifles, but surrender their contents." Goodnow also commented on the "determined heroism" of the free state women, and recounted the incident of voter fraud which occurred in the Delegate to Congress election between former Governor Reeder and J. W. Whitfield.

Keywords: Atchison, David Rice, 1807-1886; Bogus legislature; Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Brown, George W. (George Washington), 1820-1915; Election fraud; Goodnow, Isaac T., 1814-1894; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Reeder, Andrew H. (Andrew Horatio), 1807-1864; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Shannon, Wilson, 1802-1877; Sharps rifles; Stringfellow, Benjamin F.; Whitfield, John W. (John Wilkins), ca. 1826-1879; Women


Letter, Marc [Parrott] to Dear Edd [Edwin Parrott]
Authors: Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879
Date: February 9, 1856
Marcus Parrott wrote from Leavenworth, Kansas Territory, to his brother, Edwin Parrott. Marcus described the events of his ride home from a business meeting in Lawrence, where he encountered a funeral procession for his friend T. C. Shoemaker, who had been beaten to death for "abusing" Mayor William E. Murphy. Marcus equated this murder to the assault on William Phillips in May 1855, and anticipated that there would only be a "so-called" trial for the men responsible. He also told his brother to be prepared to come to Kansas Territory in April.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Land claim disputes; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Leavenworth County, Kansas Territory; Leavenworth, Kansas Territory; Missouri River; Murphey, William E; Parrott, Edwin A.; Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879; Violence; Weapons (see also Guns)


Letter, W. A. Gorman to Speaker of the House of Reps [Minnesota Territory]
Authors: Phillips, Wendell
Date: February 18, 1856
In response to a January 22, 1856, appeal from free-state leaders in Kansas, the governor of Minnesota Territory, Willis A. Gorman (St. Paul, February 18, 1856), conveyed the appeal to his territory's House of Representatives and encouraged Minnesota officials to follow a policy of "Non intervention." Governor Gorman refused to recognize Lane and Robinson as "officers in the Territory of Kansas, under any authority of the laws of the United States or of that Territory."

Keywords: Border ruffians; Free State Party; Free state movement (see also Topeka Movement); Gorman, Willis A.; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Miller, Josiah; Minnesota; Missouri; Popular sovereignty; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement)


Letter, C. K. Holliday to My Dear Wife [Mary Holliday]
Authors: Holliday, Cyrus Kurtz, 1826-1900
Date: February 26, 1856
Cyrus K. Holliday reported an uncertain peace from Lawrence, Kansas Territory to his wife, Mary Holliday, in Meadville, Pennsylvania. President Franklin Pierce's January 24th announcement had commanded assemblies organized against the constitutional territorial government to disperse, and whether Missourians would carry out a threatened attack at the March 4th meeting in Topeka was unknown. Cyrus hoped to visit Meadville and sent a message to Professor Hammett. He also told Mary of his commission as Brigadier General of the Free State military.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Free state militia; Holliday, Cyrus Kurtz, 1826-1900; Holliday, Mary; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Meadville, Pennsylvania; Missourians; Pierce, Franklin, 1804-1869; Topeka, Kansas Territory


Organization of the Free State Government in Kansas with the Inaugural Speech and Message of Governor Robinson
Authors: No authors specified.
Date: March 4, 1856
This pamphlet provides a vivid description of the scene, players, and proceedings of the initial sessions of the Free State Government convened in Topeka. From Governor Charles Robinson's inaugural speech, the intent of the new Legislature was clear: they convened in order to formulate a State government which would serve their political interests and would reflect the principle of "squatter [popular] sovereignty", since the existing Territorial government was merely provisional and furthermore did not advance their free-state aspirations.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Free state legislature; Jones, Samuel J. (Sheriff); Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Shannon, Wilson, 1802-1877; Speeches, addresses, etc.; Squatter sovereignty; Statehood (see also Admission, Kansas); Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement)


Letter, F. A. Hunt to Thos. H. Webb
Authors: Hunt, F. A.
Date: March 14, 1856
F. A. Hunt, owner of a steamboat and land agent company, wrote from St. Louis, Missouri to Thomas H. Webb, secretary of the New England Emigrant Aid Company. Hunt informed Webb that a shipment of 100 rifles and two guns had been seized at Lexington, Missouri while in transit to Leavenworth via the Steamboat Arabia. Hunt stated that unless the weapons had been taken by authority of the U.S. government, the steamboat was liable for the loss. Hunt urged Webb to be more cautious in making shipments of weapons to Kansas.

Keywords: Arabia (Steamboat); Border ruffians; Emigrant aid companies; Guns; Hunt, F. A.; New England Emigrant Aid Company; Steamboats; Weapons (see also Guns); Webb, Thomas H. (Thomas Hopkins), 1801-1866


Letter, Marc [Parrott] to Dear Edd [Edwin Parrott]
Authors: Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879
Date: May 15, 1856
Marcus Parrott wrote to his brother, Edwin Parrott, from Leavenworth, K.T. He told Edwin that the border ruffians had made their first move into Lawrence the night before, defeating the "Lawrence party". Marcus added that morale in the town was exceptionally low after the departure of both Reeder and Robinson, and believed that the two men, plus the editors of the "Herald of Freedom" and the "Kansas Free State" were imprisoned. He also believed that, this victory gone to the border ruffians, with the support of Governor Shannon, the free soilers would be cleansed from the area.

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Brown, George W. (George Washington), 1820-1915; Buford expedition; Free soil; Miller, Josiah; Parrott, Edwin A.; Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879; Platte County, Missouri; Reeder, Andrew H. (Andrew Horatio), 1807-1864; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Sumner, Edwin Vose, 1835-1912


Legal document, Free Passage to Josiah Miller out of Kansas Territory
Authors: Donalson, I.B. ; Shannon, Wilson , 1802-1877
Date: May 16, 1856
Josiah Miller, of the Kansas Free State newspaper in Lawrence, was arrested for treason by South Carolina soldiers and was tried in a military tent near Lecompton. He was defended by James Christian and was acquitted. Governor Shannon and I. B. Donalson, U. S. Marshall of the Kansas Territory, issued him this pass on his way out of the territory so that he would not be arrested again by border ruffians.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Christian, James; Courts; Donalson, Israel B.; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Kansas Free State (newspaper); Lecompton, Kansas Territory; Miller, Josiah; Shannon, Wilson, 1802-1877


Speech, David R. Atchison to Pro-Slavery "Soldiers"
Authors: Atchison, David R.; Root, Joseph Pomeroy
Date: May 21, 1856
According to a note on the top of page one made later by R. J. Hinton, "this report was made for me [Hinton] by or under the direction of Lt. Gov. (Dr.) Root [Joseph Pomeroy Root, subsequently elected the state's first lieutenant governor under the Wyandotte Constitution], who was a prisoner, heard & reported the speech" made by David Atchison to the assembled proslave "Soldiers" camped two miles west of Lawrence before they marched on and sacked the town on May 21, 1856. The transcript is labeled "Hon. David R. Atchison's Speech . . ." and begins, "This is the most glorious day of my life! This day I am a border-ruffian!" Amidst "Yells" and "Cheers," Atchison rallied the "true sons of the noble South," encouraging them to "tear down their Free State Hotel" and "thow into the Kanzas their printing presses," and to bravely follow their "worthy . . . Leader, Col. [John H.] Stringfellow!"

Keywords: Abolitionists; Atchison, David Rice, 1807-1886; Beecher Bibles; Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Free State Hotel; Free state settlers; Free state supporters; Hinton, Richard Josiah; Jones, Samuel J. (Sheriff); Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Missourians; New England Emigrant Aid Company; Newspapers - Free State; Pierce administration; Root, Joseph P., 1826-1885; Sack of Lawrence, May 1856; Southerners; Stringfellow, John H.


Letter, S. P. Hanscom to Mrs. Sara T. D. Robinson
Authors: Hanscom, S. P.
Date: May 25, 1856
On Sunday, May 25, 1856, "at the request of Gov. Robinson," S. P. Hanscom wrote Sara Robinson to assure her that her "esteemed and gallant husband" was well. This remarkably detailed letter describes the governor's captivity, the bogus charges filed against him, and circumstances that brought him to Leavenworth. Hanscom found that Robinson was receiving many visitors, including Congressman William A. Howard, chair of the congressional committee investigating Kansas troubles.

Keywords: Atchison, David Rice, 1807-1886; Bogus laws; Border ruffians; Brown, John, Jr.; Free state cause; Hanscom, S. P.; Howard Committee (see also Congressional Report 200); Howard, William Alanson; Jones, Samuel J. (Sheriff); Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Leavenworth, Kansas Territory; Lecompte, Samuel D. (Samuel Dexter), 1814-1888; Martin, John W.; Preston, Colonel; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Robinson, Sara T. L. (Sara Tappan Lawrence), 1827-1911; Sack of Lawrence, May 1856; Shannon, Wilson, 1802-1877; Stringfellow, John H.; Sumner, Edwin Vose, 1835-1912; Treason; Westport, Missouri


Letter, Milton M. Powers to Dear Friend, Cyrus K. Holliday
Authors: No authors specified.
Date: June 7, 1856
Milton M. Powers, Deputy Clerk of Court in Columbus, Ohio wrote to Cyrus K. Holliday, Free State leader and founder of Topeka, Kansas Territory. Powers had read of Holliday's activities in northern newspapers. A presentation of the Wrongs of Kansas, emphasizing Andrew H. Reeder and Samuel N. Wood's experiences, had emotionally motivated Powers to write and assure Holliday of his support. Once a Jeffersonian Democrat, but convicted that the party had abandoned its principles, Powers had become a Republican. He stated that the entire nation was attuned to events in Kansas Territory, and he believed that these events would have intense impact on the nation's future.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Buchanan, James, 1791-1868; Columbus, Ohio; Democratic Party (U.S.); Holliday, Cyrus Kurtz, 1826-1900; National politics; Newspapers; Powers, Milton M.; Reeder, Andrew H. (Andrew Horatio), 1807-1864; Republican Party (U.S.: 1854- ); Wood, S. N. (Samuel Newitt)


Minutes, Kansas Relief Committee
Authors: National Kansas Committee
Date: June 9, 1856 - June 26, 1856
This document details the minutes of three meetings of the Kansas Relief Committee, otherwise known as the National Kansas Committee, held in 1856 on June 9th, June 21st, and June 26th. It also includes information about the membership of this emigrant aid company. The first of these meetings adopted resolutions to aid the plight of free-state settlers in Kansas Territory. Furthermore, the members of the committee decided to establish five thousand settlers in Kansas Territory and to give them a year's worth of provisions.

Keywords: Antislavery perspective; Border ruffians; Emigrant aid companies; Emigration and immigration; Hyatt, Thaddeus; Kansas Relief Committee; Minutes; Missouri; National Kansas Committee; Relief; Relief funds


Letter, C. K. Holliday to My Dear Wife [Mary Holliday]
Authors: Holliday, Cyrus Kurtz, 1826-1900
Date: June 16, 1856
Cyrus K. Holliday of Topeka, Kansas Territory advised his wife, Mary Holliday, in Meadville, Pennsylvania, to read northern papers for new of Kansas. He repeated that she wait to come. Troops from Fort Riley and Fort Leavenworth led by Colonel Edwin V. Sumner gathered to battle proslavery forces led by General John W. Whitfield. Cyrus also mentioned a house and crops, receiving Mary's money and, despite difficulties, he praised Kansas as a home for settlers.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Crops; Fort Leavenworth, Kansas Territory; Fort Riley, Kansas Territory; Holliday, Cyrus Kurtz, 1826-1900; Holliday, Mary; Newspapers; Shawnee County, Kansas Territory; Sumner, Edwin Vose, 1835-1912; Topeka, Kansas Territory; Whitfield, John W. (John Wilkins), ca. 1826-1879


Letter, C. A. W. [Charles A. Wright] to Mr. [Hiram] Hill
Authors: Wright, Charles A.
Date: June 16, 1856
Charles Wright wrote from Lawrence, Kansas Territory, to Hiram Hill. Wright spoke passionately about the free state cause after the Sack of Lawrence and the Pottawatomie Massacre, imploring "eastern friends" for help. In Wright's words, "talk will do no good that time is past what we now need is men money and rifles". He added that southerners were "using every effort" to drive free staters from the Territory. U.S. Troops were attempting to disband the ruffians, though according to Wright they only dispersed and reorganized elsewhere.

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Free state cause; Hill, Hiram; Skirmishing; United States. Army; Wright, Charles A.


Letter, Orville C. Brown to My dear Sir
Authors: No authors specified.
Date: June 24, 1856
This letter, presumably written by Orville Chester Brown, is an excellent example of a free state perspective on the events of 1856 in Kansas Territory. Speaking in rather eloquent terms, the author expresses anger at the United States government for their refusal to aid free state settlers.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Free state perspective; United States. Army; Westport, Missouri


Letter, Peter Page to Thaddeus Hyatt
Authors: Page, Peter
Date: July 6, 1856
Peter Page wrote from Chicago, Illinois to Thaddeus Hyatt, president of the National Kansas Committee, concerning the shipment of relief to free-state settlers in Kansas Territory and the emigration of settlers into Kansas. The author wrote a lengthy account of the committee's frustrated attempts to arrange suitable transportation into the territory, since the water route on the Missouri River was unsafe due to persistent harassment from border ruffians.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Chicago, Illinois; Emigration and immigration; Hyatt, Thaddeus; Iowa; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Leavenworth, Kansas Territory; Lexington, Missouri; Missouri; Page, Peter; Violence


Speech, Gerritt Smith to the Kansas Convention
Authors: Smith, Gerrit
Date: July 10, 1856
This speech was made by Gerritt Smith to a meeting of the Kansas Convention in Buffalo, New York. In this speech, he argued in support of various resolutions related to border ruffianism in Kansas Territory.

Keywords: Antislavery; Bogus legislature; Border ruffians; Kansas question; Missouri compromise; Missourians; Smith, Gerritt; Violence; Voting fraud (see also Contested elections)


Letter draft, unsigned [Hiram Hill] to S. N. Simpson
Authors: Hill, Hiram
Date: July 12, 1856
Hiram Hill wrote from Williamsburgh, Massachusetts, to Samuel Simpson in Kansas Territory, suggesting to him at length that he write more slowly and clearly as Hill was having trouble deciphering his news regarding West Lawrence. Hill told Simpson that the people of his area were aroused enough by the continuing accounts of border ruffian violence that they called a meeting and raised $300 for Kansas. He believed that the future of the situation rested with the upcoming presidential election, "free Kansas free speech & free press & Fremont", to keep Congress from passing a "Compromises" bill with slavery.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Free state supporters; Fremont, John Charles, 1813-1890; Hill, Hiram; Kansas Territory; National politics; Simpson, Samuel Newell; Skirmishing


Letter, William H. Leeman to "Dear Mother"
Authors: Leeman, William H.
Date: July 15, 1856
William H. Leeman, a follower of John Brown in Kansas and eventually a casualty of the Harpers Ferry raid, wrote this letter to his mother while "traveling across the prairies of Iowa" in July 1856. Although he briefly mentions an encounter with "2,000 border ruffians," he assures his mother that he is safe, in good health, and well armed, and that he is much happier in this "adventure" than had he staid home and "worked in a shop."

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Cannons; Free state militia; Iowa; Leeman, William H.; Militia; Missouri; Weapons (see also Guns)


Letter, O.E. Learnard to Dear Father [S. T. Learnard]
Authors: Learnard, Oscar E.
Date: July 23, 1856
Oscar Learnard wrote his father, S.T. Learnard, that he was disappointed in the attitude of people in Vermont and throughout the North who continued to support the Pierce administration. If they did so because they were Democrats, they should learn from Andrew H. Reeder, J. H. Lane, William Y. Roberts, and others who had seen the light. Learnard admitted "a few cases" of free state retaliation "upon their oppressors," and then gave some "facts" about the "Patawotamie" incident, while not mentioning John Brown by name. Learnard believed that the reports about mangled bodies were untrue.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Casualties; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Learnard, Oscar E., 1832-1911; Learnard, S. T.; Northern Democrats; Pierce, Franklin, 1804-1869; Pottawatomie Massacre, May 1856; Reeder, Andrew H. (Andrew Horatio), 1807-1864; Roberts, William Young; Vermont; Violence; Violent deaths


Letter, S. N. Simpson to Hiram Hill Esqr
Authors: Simpson, Samuel Newell
Date: July 24, 1856
Samuel Simpson wrote from Lawrence, Kansas Territory to Hiram Hill, reporting on the status of Hill's various real estate investments, "all doing well". Simpson was able to take possession of a town lot owned by tenant Fuller instead of a rent payment. The majority of the lots of West Lawrence were allotted to Simpson, who intended to build an avenue through it immediately. Simpson expressed for old times back in Massachusetts at the Hill's home, and predicted that the "dark times" in Kansas would pass by the next spring. Meanwhile, he said border ruffians still killed and robbed, only to seek the protection of U.S. Troops and escape punishment.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Hill, Hiram; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Real estate investment; Simpson, Samuel Newell; Skirmishing; Town development; Town lots


Address of the Central County Kansas Committee to the People of the county of Onondaga
Authors: Hebbard, Russell
Date: August 7, 1856
The inflamatory rhetoric of this printed circular provided an antislavery perspective of events in Kansas. It urged the residents of central New York to provide aid to Kansas settlers. It also described plans to encourage a "a large emigration into the territory" to aid free state supporters living there but to also increase the number of "legal voters" for the fall elections. The chairman of the Central County Kansas Committee was Russell Hebbard. The document listed the names of other officers and committee members.

Keywords: Antislavery; Border ruffians; Election fraud; Emigrant aid companies; Emigration and immigration; Hebbard, Russell; Missouri compromise; New York; New York State Kansas Committee; Syracuse, New York


Letters, J. H. Lane to "Friends" [Robinson and others] and C. Robinson to "Dear Sir" [J.H. Lane]
Authors: Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Robinson, Charles
Date: August 11, 1856
Copied by R. J. Hinton from his journal in preparation of one of his publications on the Kansas war, the first letter is Jim Lane's offer to rescue the Lecompton prisoners (Robinson, George W. Brown, Gaius Jenkins, et al) and Charles Robinson's reply, suggesting that in light of current congressional activity the plan was ill-advised. Both were dated August 11, 1856.

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare - Free state perspective; Border ruffians; Brown, George W. (George Washington), 1820-1915; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Congress (See United States. Congress); Deitzler, George W.; Free state militia; Jenkins, Gaius; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lecompton, Kansas Territory; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Smith, George W.


Letter, Samuel Whitcomb to Respected & Dear Sir [Honorable G. Smith]
Authors: Whitcomb, Samuel
Date: August 30, 1856
This letter, written in Springfield by Samuel Whitcomb, is addressed to the Honorable G. Smith of Peterborg, New York. It is a passionate piece of correspondence that discusses slavery and liberty, demonstrating the conviction of this free-soil advocate. Whitcomb also expressed his frustration that the federal government was not more supportive of the free state cause in Kansas Territory, as well as his fear that the war was destined to spread out from Kansas.

Keywords: Antislavery perspective; Border ruffians; Congress (See United States. Congress); Free state cause; National politics; Pierce administration; Sectionalism (United States); United States Government; United States. Army; United States. Congress; Whitcomb, Samuel


Letter, [Orville] Chester [Brown] to My dear friend
Authors: Brown, Orville Chester, 1811-1904
Date: September 2, 1856
This eloquent letter, presumably written by Orville Chester Brown, provides an example of the free state perspective on the events of 1856. It includes references to a number of key personalities and places that played a vital role during the struggle for Kansas. Brown writes that "Kansas is the scene of bloody strife," as "2000 armed men" from Missouri were rumored to have crossed into Kansas.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Brown, Spencer; Free state perspective; Georgia; Missouri; Violence


Letter, J. H. Kagi to "Dear Father"
Authors: Kagi, John Henry
Date: September 4, 1856
From Topeka, Kagi wrote his father about his (Kagi's) personal situation and more generally about the civil war in Kansas. Several thousand "armed Missourians" had been committing outrages against free state citizens with the support of proslave leaders--Wilson Shannon, Samuel Lecompte, and Daniel Woodson. Freestaters, according to Kagi, were just then mounting an effective defense of both Lawrence and Topeka, both primary targets of the proslavery forces--"the enemy are determined to 'wipe out', as they say, both these towns."

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Free state cause; Kagi, John Henry; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Lecompte, Samuel D. (Samuel Dexter), 1814-1888; Militia; Shannon, Wilson, 1802-1877; Topeka, Kansas Territory; Woodson, Daniel


Letter, John Brown to Dear Wife [Mary Brown] & Children every one
Authors: Brown, John , 1800-1859
Date: September 7, 1856
Just over a week after the Battle of Osawatomie, John Brown wrote his family from Lawrence about the death of "our dear Frederick" and the ensuing engagement, in which Brown himself was slightly wounded. Brown's small force "killed & wounded from 70 to 80 of the enemy" before escaping, and through it all "Jason fought bravely by my side."

Keywords: Border ruffians; Brown, Frederick; Brown, Jason; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, John, Jr.; Free state militia; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Osawatomie, Battle of; Weapons (see also Guns)


Pamphlet, "A Ride Through Kanzas"
Authors: Higginson, Thomas Wentworth
Date: 1856
These "letters", function as diary entries and were published collectively under the above title, written by Thomas Wentworth Higginson, an ardent Northern abolitionist and agent for the Massachusetts Kansas Aid Committee. Higginson describes his travels through Kansas in the aftermath of the Battle of Hickory Point and includes accounts of the experience of free state prisoners held in Lecompton, as well as those of various citizens of the territory, free state and proslavery alike. He concludes his entries with an assessment of the future in Kanzas, stating that "the more thorough an Abolitionist any man is, the more correct are his prophecies as to American affairs".

Keywords: American Anti-Slavery Society; Antislavery perspective; Border ruffians; Geary, John White, 1819-1873; Hickory Point, Battle of; Higginson, Thomas Wentworth, 1823-1911; Kansas Territory; Landscape; Law and Order Party; Nebraska City, Nebraska Territory; Prisoners; Travel


Buffum Tombstone
Authors: No authors specified.
Date: Sept. 17, 1856
Tombstone of David C. Buffum, a free-stater from Massachusetts who was killed by the pro-slavery Kickapoo Rangers on Sept. 17, 1856. Buffum was plowing a field on his farm near Lawrence when the Rangers (including Henry Titus and Sheriff Samuel Jones) stole his horse and shot him. Before he died, Buffum was heard to express the sentiments chiseled on his tombstone: "I am willing to die for the cause of Freedom in Kansas."

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Buffum, David C.; Casualties; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Free state; Free state perspective; Jones, Samuel J. (Sheriff); Kickapoo Rangers (militia); Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Massachusetts; Objects; Proslavery activities; Titus, Henry Theodore; Tombstones; Violence; Violent deaths


Newspaper article, Journal of Commerce
Authors: Journal of Commerce
Date: September 22, 1856
This clipping, enclosed in a letter from A.S. Harris to Thaddeus Hyatt dated September 22, 1856, argued that the emigration sponsored by New England emigrant aid societies was "indiscreet," although not illegal. The article placed the blame for the current troubles on the free-state settlers in Kansas, stating that Missouri settlers were only responding to the provocation of anti-slavery supporters.

Keywords: Bills, legislative; Border ruffians; Congress (See United States. Congress); Democratic Party (U.S.); Emigrant aid companies; Emigration and immigration; Free state activities; Free state cause; Immigrants; Kansas Nebraska Act; Massachusetts; Massachusetts Emigrant Aid Company; Missouri; Missouri compromise; Pierce administration; Reeder, Andrew H. (Andrew Horatio), 1807-1864; Sectionalism (United States); Slavery; Topeka Constitution; United States Government; United States. Congress; United States. Constitution


Letter, J. A. Davies to Dear Friend [Thomas Wentworth] Higginson
Authors: Davies, J. A.
Date: September 27, 1856
This letter was written by a Kansas settler named J. A. Davies who was originally from Massachusetts. It was addressed to Thomas Wentworth Higginson, an agent for the Massachusetts Kansas Aid Committee and an ardent Northern abolitionist. The main topic of the letter was the Leavenworth municipal election on September 1, 1856 and the other "outrages" witnessed by Davies. On the date of that election, border ruffians had crossed the border and hampered the legal voters of the territory from casting their votes. The mob violence was so terrible that virtually every free state settler was driven from the town, and Mr. Hops was murdered by Mr. Fugent. Davies and his family fled to St. Louis and then left for Alton, Illinois, but he hopes to return to the territory.

Keywords: Alton, Illinois; Border ruffians; Davies, J. A.; Election fraud; Elections; Free state perspective; Higginson, Thomas Wentworth, 1823-1911; Leavenworth, Kansas Territory; St. Louis, Missouri; Violence


Letter, Marc [Parrott] to Dear Edd [Edwin Parrott]
Authors: Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879
Date: September 29, 1856
Marcus Parrot wrote from Lawrence, Kansas Territory, to his brother, Edwin Parrott, regarding the aftermath of the Battle of Hickory Point, which had occurred on September 13. Marcus told him that border ruffians had seized his personal letters, home, and furniture, and were questioning him about a phrase Edwin had written to him in a letter, which suggested the assassination of Judge Lecompte. Marcus stated that Governor Geary had done more damage to the Free State cause than all of his predecessors together, and feared that, if Fremont was defeated in the upcoming Presidential election, their cause would be completely lost.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Brindle, William; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Free soil; Fremont, John Charles, 1813-1890; Geary, John White, 1819-1873; Hickory Point, Battle of; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Parrott, Edwin A.; Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879


Letter, George W. Hunt and C. Stearns to Blood, Hutchinson, et al
Authors: Hunt, George W.; Stearns, C.
Date: September 29, 1856
On behalf of a committee of Lawrence citizens, Hunt and Stearns wrote the State Central Committee of Kansas "to urge upon your attention several important points in reference to the present condition of Kansas." They were convinced that a "storm" from Missouri was about "to burst upon the devoted heads of the freemen of Kansas" and "perhaps to deluge Kansas with rivers of blood." The committee urged the state and national organization to help them prepare for the storm, while things were relatively calm, with an adequate supply of arms and ammunition and men. But, with a veiled reference, perhaps, to John Brown, they called only for "moral heroes" who would not follow the "principles of Border Ruffianism."

Keywords: Ammunition; Beecher Bibles; Bleeding Kansas; Blood, James; Border ruffians; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Free state cause; Free state settlers; Geary, John White, 1819-1873; Guns; Hutchinson, William, 1823-1904; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Missouri; National Kansas Committee; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; State Central Committee of Kansas; Weapons (see also Guns)


Letter, Marc [Parrott] to Dear Father [Thomas Parrott]
Authors: Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879
Date: September 30, 1856
Marcus Parrott wrote from Lawrence, Kansas Territory, to his Father, Thomas Parrott. In this letter, Marcus told his father about the events that had befallen him, his letters and possessions being seized by border ruffians. He added that a letter from his brother, Edwin, in which Edwin suggested the assassination of Judge Lecompte, was drawing attention to the two of them. Marcus describes Lawrence as a dangerous place for free state supporters at this time, stating that Governor Geary "has failed to accomplish anything" in his consideration of the uprisings between free state and proslavery men.

Keywords: Bleeding Kansas; Border ruffians; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Geary, John White, 1819-1873; Hickory Point, Battle of; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Parrott, Edwin A.; Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879; Parrott, Thomas


Letter, S. N. Simpson to Friend [Hiram] Hill
Authors: Simpson, Samuel Newell
Date: October 11, 1856
Samuel Simpson wrote from Lawrence, Kansas Territory, to Hiram Hill, reporting that free staters were "still live" in Lawrence, and that most border ruffians had retreated for the time being. Simpson updated Hill on the status of his properties and new construction in the town. Thaddeus Whitney, he said, was "absent from town", however, and Missourians had stolen some valuable building materials. Simpson added that he had helped many destitute families with the monetary aid Hill had sent.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Economic conditions; Free state support; Hill, Hiram; Hotels; Lawrence buildings; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Simpson, Samuel Newell; Town development


Report of a trip to Kansas by W. F. M. Arny
Authors: Arny, W F. M. (William Frederick Milton), 1813-1881
Date: October 20, 1856
William F. M. Arny was the general agent of the National Kansas Committee. He submitted this report describing the "wants and sufferings" of settlers in Kansas Territory. It included references to border ruffians, land sales, and the suffering in various districts of Kansas. He requested that aid be sent to the Kansas Central Committee.

Keywords: Arny, W. F. M. (William Frederick Milton), 1813-1881; Blood, James; Border ruffians; Chicago, Illinois; Clothing and dress; Council Grove, Kansas Territory; Eldridge, Shalor Winchell, 1816-1899; Emigrant aid companies; Emigrant aid companies - Free state; Food; Geary, John White, 1819-1873; Grasshopper Falls, Kansas Territory; Hutchinson, William, 1823-1904; Illness; Kansas Central Committee; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Lecompton, Kansas Territory; Martin, Samuel E. (Dr.); National Kansas Committee; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Relief; Topeka, Kansas Territory; Winchell, James M., 1823-1877


Letter, W. F. M. Arny to Dear Sir [Thaddeus Hyatt]
Authors: Arny, W F. M. (William Frederick Milton), 1813-1881
Date: October 23, 1856
W. F. M. Arny, an agent of the National Kansas Committee, wrote this letter to Thaddeus Hyatt while traveling on the Missouri River. The main focus of this letter revolved around committee business and the state of affairs in Kansas. During this visit to Kansas, Arny had reorganized the Kansas Central Committee in order to increase its efficiency, and he included in this letter a revised list of its officers and members. He also wrote about his conversation with Governor Geary concerning the various volunteer companies created by free state men. The letter ends with a brief description of the suffering of the settlers, their meager diet, and their desperate need for more provisions.

Keywords: Arny, W. F. M. (William Frederick Milton), 1813-1881; Border ruffians; Buchanan, James, 1791-1868; Chicago, Illinois; Clothing and dress; Economic conditions; Eldridge, Shalor Winchell, 1816-1899; Election, Presidential, 1856; Firearms; Food; Free state militia; Free state perspective; Geary, John White, 1819-1873; Guns; Hyatt, Thaddeus; Illness; Kansas Central Committee; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Money; National Kansas Committee; Relief; Relief funds; Sickness (see Illness); Topeka, Kansas; Violence; Weapons (see also Guns)


Letter, James Gillpatrick to Gen. [Samuel C.] Pomeroy
Authors: Gillpatrick, James
Date: October 24, 1856
From Brownville, K.T., Gillpatrick wrote seeking compensation for his losses to the "border ruffins," or specifically at the hand of "a miserable horse thief from Missouri." Gillpatrick had been advised by a Chicago friend that all such aid was being distributed through the Lawrence based committee, thus his letter to Pomeroy, who would "doubtless know who they are."

Keywords: Border ruffians; Chicago, Illinois; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; National Kansas Committee; Pomeroy, S. C. (Samuel Clarke), 1816-1891; Relief funds; State Central Committee of Kansas


Letter, W.F.M. Arny to Wm. Barnes
Authors: Arny, W F. M. (William Frederick Milton), 1813-1881
Date: October 25, 1856
Arny, general agent of the National Kansas Committee, wrote from a steamboat traveling on the Missouri River to inform William Barnes, secretary of the New York State Kansas Committee, about conditions in Kansas. Arny reported on the state of the Kansas State Central Committee, the efforts by free state supporters in Kansas to prepare for possible proslavery attacks if Buchanan won the 1856 presidential election, and the relief needs of free state settlers in Kansas.

Keywords: Arny, W. F. M. (William Frederick Milton), 1813-1881; Barnes, William, 1824-1913; Border ruffians; Food; Free state support; Geary, John White, 1819-1873; Kansas State Central Committee; National Kansas Committee; New York State Kansas Committee; Relief


Letter, William Leeman to "Dear Mother"
Authors: Leeman, William H.
Date: November 9, 1856
Writing to his Mother from Nebraska Territory on November 4, 1856, Leeman, who "belong[ed] to Old Browns company," said he had just left Kansas Territory because, after driving the "Border Ruffians" out, the governor and "his troops were after us [and] we were obliged to leave the territory." Leeman hoped to go back to his 160 acre farm in Kansas soon and encouraged his Mother to come when the troubles were over.

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Free state settlers; Jayhawking; Leeman, William H.; Militia; Nebraska Territory; Osawatomie, Battle of; Sharps rifles


Letter, John R. Everett to Kansas Central Committee
Authors: Everett, John R.
Date: November 5, 1856
This letter, written by John Everett from Osawatomie, described the wounds suffered by George Cutter the day before the battle of Osawatomie. Everett and his family had cared for Mr. Cutter for about ten weeks and desired some monetary compensation for their efforts. An annotation added in 1895 by Thaddeus Hyatt, president of the National Kansas Committee, demonstrated Hyatt's annoyance that this letter presented a $60 bill for services rendered. There is also another annotation from 1895 referring to Hyatt's travels in Kansas Territory.

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Brown, Frederick; Cutter, George; Everett, John R.; Free state militia; Herald of Freedom; Hyatt, Thaddeus; Kansas Central Committee; Medicine; Money; Osawatomie, Battle of; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Sears, W. A.; Violence; Wattles, Augustus; Wounds and injuries


Testimony of S. H. Moore
Authors: Hyatt, Thaddeus
Date: November 28, 1856
This testimony made up a portion of the Journal of Investigations in Kansas, a collection of personal reminiscences that was apparently recorded by Thaddeus Hyatt, president of the National Kansas Committee. This particular account relates the experience of S. H. Moore, a resident of Ottawa, Kansas Territory. Mr. Moore describes the land, vegetation, etc. around Ottawa and mentions various settlers from the area.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Crops; Franklin County, Kansas Territory; Hyatt, Thaddeus; Moore, S. H.; National Kansas Committee; Ottawa, Kansas Territory; Postal service


Testimony of Thomas Bedoe
Authors: Hyatt, Thaddeus
Date: December 2, 1856
The testimony of Thomas Bedoe, a portion of the Journal of Investigations of Kansas, was apparently collected by Thaddeus Hyatt, president of the National Kansas Committee. It describes in detail the time Mr. Bedoe spent serving in the free state militia in the Osawatomie and Lawrence areas. He was a part of the Battle of Osawatomie and this account provides valuable information about the events preceding the battle.

Keywords: Battles; Bedoe, Thomas; Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Fort Saunders, Kansas Territory (see also Camp Saunders); Free state activities; Free state militia; Hyatt, Thaddeus; Osawatomie, Battle of; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Shombre, Henry J.; Shore, Samuel T.; Skirmishing; Stanton, Kansas Territory; Topeka, Kansas


Testimonies of Nathaniel Parker, Horace L. Dunnell, Hinton S. Dunnell, Alexander MacArthur, James Hall, Jerome Hazen, and Charles Henry Caulkins
Authors: Hyatt, Thaddeus
Date: December 5, 1856 - December 7, 1856
These testimonies, presumably taken down on paper by Thaddeus Hyatt of the National Kansas Committee, include personal information about each settler, such as their age, occupation, etc., as well as their experiences in Kansas and their involvement in border warfare and skirmishes with pro-slavery settlers. Each account is descriptive and provides tremendous detail about their individual experiences. The testimonies of MacArthur, Hall, and Hazen are combined into one, with this group testimony split into two separate sections.

Keywords: Battles; Black Jack, Battle of; Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Caulkins, Charles Henry; Cutter, Calvin M.; Dunnell, Hinton S.; Dunnell, Horace L.; Firearms; Fort Titus, Battle of; Free state militia; Free state perspective; Guns; Hall, James; Harvey, James A.; Hazen, Jerome; Hickory Point, Battle of; Hoyt, David Starr; Hyatt, Thaddeus; Iowa; Iowa City, Iowa; Jones, John Tecumseh (Tauy); Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; MacArthur, Alexander; Missouri River; Parker, Nathaniel; Prisoners; Prisons; Proslavery activities; Skirmishing; Violence; Walker, Samuel Douglas; Weapons (see also Guns); Weston, Missouri; Wounds and injuries


Experiences of R. S. Griffithe, N. W. Spicer, and J. A. Harvey
Authors: No authors specified.
Date: December 6, 1856
These testimonies, collected by the National Kansas Committee, record the experiences of these three settlers during the turbulent times of Bleeding Kansas. These testimonies focus on each settler's involvement in free state activities and their interaction with border ruffians. Griffithe and Spicer both served in the free state militia, and Harvey, who had commanded an emigrant train from Chicago, was the commander of a free state company.

Keywords: Battles; Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Fort Saunders, Kansas Territory (see also Camp Saunders); Free state activities; Free state militia; Geary, John White, 1819-1873; Griffithe, R. S.; Harvey, James A.; Hickory Point, Battle of; Hoyt, David Starr; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Leavenworth, Kansas Territory; Lecompton, Kansas Territory; Prisoners; Sack of Lawrence, May 1856; Shombre, Henry J.; Skirmishing; Spicer, N.W.; Tecumseh, Kansas Territory; Titus, Henry Theodore; Topeka, Kansas; Violence


Kansas Experiences of A.R. Scolen, William Reap, Ephraim Coy, and Capt. Samuel Anderson
Authors: No authors specified.
Date: December 21, 1856 - December 23, 1856
These testimonies were collected from a number of free state settlers along Pottawatomie Creek, presumably by an associate of the National Kansas Committee. Each account includes personal information about the settler (their origins, family, crops, etc.) and also testimonies of their involvement in the free state militia.

Keywords: Agriculture; Anderson, Samuel; Battles; Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Brown, John, Jr.; Casualties; Cline, Captain; Clothing and dress; Coy, Ephraim; Crops; Food; Free state activities; Free state cause; Free state militia; Free state perspective; Illness; Livestock; Militia; Missourians; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Pottawatomie Creek, Kansas Territory; Reap, William; Scolen, A.R.; Shore, Samuel T.; Sickness (see Illness); Skirmishing; Travel; Wounds and injuries


Testimonies of Samuel Nickel and Miles Morris
Authors: No authors specified.
Date: December 30, 1856
These testimonies, taken down by the National Kansas Committee, related the Kansas experiences of Samuel Nickel and Miles Morris, including their personal backgrounds. Nickel's claim was burned to the ground by Missourians, and he was forced to hide in the woods for fear they would take his life. The testimony of Miles Morris described his settlement on Pottawatomie Creek.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Fort Saunders, Kansas Territory (see also Camp Saunders); Grain; Morris, Miles; Nickel, Samuel; Pottawatomie Creek, Kansas Territory; Violence


Settlers on Little Sugar Creek
Authors: Stewart, John E.
Date: c. 1856 or 1857
This listing of the settlers along Little Sugar Creek includes information about each settler, the resources in the area, and local buildings. It also includes an account of an attack by the Missouri ruffians in which a number of men were carried off to Westport, Missouri. It was most likely compiled by John E. Stewart at the request of Thaddeus Hyatt, president of the National Kansas Committee.

Keywords: Arkansas; Border ruffians; Churches; Free state settlers; Illinois; Indiana; Iowa; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Little Sugar Creek, Kansas Territory; Mills and mill-work; Missouri; Ohio; Proslavery settlers; Schools; Settlement; Timber; Titus, Henry Theodore; Violence; Westport, Missouri


Kansas Experience of George Cutter
Authors: No authors specified.
Date: January 1, 1857
This reminiscence is presumably from the Journal of Investigations in Kansas, which was compiled by the National Kansas Committee under the leadership of Thaddeus Hyatt. George Cutter was with Frederick Brown shortly before the Battle of Osawatomie, and like Brown, he was wounded during an altercation with border ruffians. While he was not directly involved in this battle, this reminiscence is still a rather fascinating account.

Keywords: Abbott, James Burnett; Adair, Samuel Lyle; Agriculture; Arny, W. F. M. (William Frederick Milton), 1813-1881; Battles; Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Brown, Frederick; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Casualties; Cutter, George; Darrach, Barstow; Everett, John R.; Fort Titus, Battle of; Franklin, Kansas Territory; Free state activities; Free state perspective; Gillpatrick, Rufus; Horses; Hyatt, Thaddeus; Land claims; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Massachusetts; National Kansas Committee; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Proslavery activities; Reid, John W.; Sears, W. A.; Shore, Samuel T.; Skirmishing; Topeka, Kansas; Violence; Violent deaths; Weapons (see also Guns); White, Martin; Wounds and injuries


Letter, C. A. Wright to Mr Hill
Authors: Wright, Charles A.
Date: January 4, 1857
Charles Wright wrote from Lawrence, Kansas Territory, to Hiram Hill, having recently recovered from an extended illness. Wright told him that "peace and quietness seam [sic] to reign throughout the Territory" and anticipated that Kansas would become a free state without too much more trouble from the border ruffians. He added that two new hotels were being built in town, one by Thaddeus Whitney, in order to accommodate the spring emigration rush. Wright directed Hill to write him in New York, as he would be traveling East for the next two months.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Emigration and immigration; Hill, Hiram; Hotels; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Whitney, Thaddeus L.; Wright, Charles A.


Letter, Hiram Hill to Dear Brother
Authors: Hill, Hiram
Date: March 18, 1857
Hiram Hill, en route to Kansas Territory, wrote from Jefferson City, Missouri, to his brother back east. Hill reported that the journey so far had been pleasant, though they had been delayed by a train wreck and were currently waiting for a boat to take them up the River. He mentioned his experiences with border ruffians, finding that they were "civil" unless they "get too much whiskey down". Hill lamented the resignation of Kansas Territory's Governor Geary, but related that he saw the new marshal, who was on his way to K.T., in St. Louis.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Geary, John White, 1819-1873; Hill, Hiram; Jefferson City, Missouri; Newspapers; Railroads; Transportation; Travel


Speech, John Brown
Authors: Brown, John , 1800-1859
Date: ca. March 1857
During the spring of 1857, John Brown traveled to several Northeastern cities (specifically, in Brown's home state of Connecticut) to solicit financial support for the Kansas crusade. In the speech delivered from these handwritten notes, Brown outlined some of the many sacrifices he and others had made to give his audience a sense of what was needed and discussed the unfolding situation in Kansas Territory.

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Brown, John, Jr.; Buford expedition; Cato, Sterling G.; Crops; Finance; Free state cause; Hartford, Connecticut; Jones, John Tecumseh (Tauy); Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Missouri; Osawatomie, Battle of; Proslavery activities; Speeches, addresses, etc.


Letter, S .F. Burdick to Dear Brother [Oscar E. Learnard]
Authors: Burdick, S.F.
Date: April 12, 1857
S. F. Burdick, in this transcribed version of his letter to Oscar Learnard, wrote from Winooski, Vermont. Burdick communicated his feelings regarding recent political events in Kansas Territory, condemning President Buchanan's replacement of Governor Geary with the "Southern appointment" Robert Walker. He also advised Learnard to either "submit to slavery or fight", and saw no other alternative solution to the problem, though later he cautioned to only fight if first attacked. Burdick added that he wished to come to Kansas Territory, in spite of the troubles, but was held back by his wife's wishes.

Keywords: Antislavery perspective; Border ruffians; Buchanan, James, 1791-1868; Burdick, S.F.; Geary, John White, 1819-1873; Learnard, Oscar E., 1832-1911; National politics; Vermont; Walker, Robert J. (Robert John), 1801-1869


Letter, Hiram Hill to Dear Brother [O. G. Hill]
Authors: Hill, Hiram
Date: May 7, 1857
Hiram Hill wrote from his visit in Lawrence, Kansas Territory, to his brother, O. G. Hill, in Boston. Hill told his brother that he hoped to be back home in Massachusetts by June, but that he was unsure how long his business would take in Quindaro. He reported that the Territory was quiet, the border ruffians were "as tame as a pack of spaniels", and were more interested in having free state men invest in their towns than in large-scale fighting.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Hill, Hiram; Hill, O.G.; Quindaro, Kansas Territory; Real estate investment; Wyandotte, Kansas Territory


Letter, R. G. Elliot to Dear Sister
Authors: Elliott, Robert G.
Date: May 8, 1857
Robert Elliott, former publisher of the Kansas Free State newspaper in Lawrence along with Josiah Miller, wrote to his sister from Delaware, Kansas Territory. Elliott told her that last season the area had been the site of "ruffian outrages," but since this time it had evolved into a thriving area with a large population of free state men, whose presence raised property values. The town was not without its share of "bloated ruffians" or stray dogs, however. Elliott also mentioned that a couple of proslavery men had even subscribed to his newspaper, though he did not intend to change the "character" of the paper, which continued to favor the free state cause.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Delaware City, Kansas Territory; Economic conditions; Elliott, Robert G.; Free state supporters; Leavenworth County, Kansas Territory; Newspapers; Real estate investment; Sack of Lawrence, May 1856


Letter, J. A. Andrew to Dear [George] Collamore
Authors: Andrew, J. A.
Date: July 7, 1857
J. A. Andrew wrote to George Collamore with advice to the people of Lawrence regarding the bogus legislature. Andrew suggested that the free state men continue to vote down any constitution that is not the one drawn in Topeka. He also described his impressions of the free state leaders, such as Charles Robinson, James Lane, and others.

Keywords: Andrew, J.A.; Bogus legislature; Border ruffians; Buchanan, James, 1791-1868; Conway, Martin Franklin; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Stearns, Charles; Taxation; Topeka Constitution


Letter, S. G. Hubbard to John Brown Esq.
Authors: Hubbard, S. G.
Date: October 6, 1857
S. G. Hubbard, a New Haven, Connecticut, supporter, wrote regarding one of Brown's political tracts, the impossibility of fund raising for the cause during this time of financial crisis, the prospects for a Free State victory in the previous day's election, and the president's recent action that "committed the [Democratic] party to the extremist doctrines of Slavery extension & Slavery Nationalization."

Keywords: Antislavery perspective; Border ruffians; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Buchanan administration; Buchanan, James, 1791-1868; Democratic Party (U.S.); Election fraud; Election, Territorial Legislature, October 1857; Free state support; Hubbard, S. G.; Kansas question; New Haven, Connecticut; Panic of 1857; Slave power


Letter, Henry H. Williams to Capt'n. [John] Brown
Authors: Williams, Henry H.
Date: October 12, 1857
With regard to the recent legislative election, Henry Williams of Osawatomie informed Brown that "it went off right" largely because the Free State men were throughly organized for their protection and the protection of the ballot box. Williams himself led a company of 80 men and believe word of the preparedness contributed to a quiet and successful election day.

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare - Free state perspective; Border ruffians; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Election fraud; Election, Territorial Legislature, October 1857; Free state militia; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Sharps rifles; Stubbs militia company; Tabor, Iowa; Weapons (see also Guns); Williams, Henry H.


Letter, Your affectionate Husband [Joseph H. Trego] to My Dear wife [Alice Trego]
Authors: Trego, Joseph Harrington
Date: December 21, 1857
Joseph Trego wrote from Sugar Mound, Kansas Territory, to his wife, Alice, in Illinois. Trego, in addition to elaborating on hunting and mill work, described at length the skirmishing between local free state and proslavery men, which had been continuous throughout the summer and fall. He reported the manner in which Missourians had seized and occupied lands in the absence of their owners, who were free state men. "Bogus courts" had brought the free state men who defended their lands to court, which resulted in so many fees owed that the men had to sell their land to pay them; the new owners were usually Missourians. Trego accused proslavery supporters of fabricating stories about destruction caused by warring Abolitionists in order to draw the support of the U.S. troops. Controversy over the Lecompton Constitution flourished in free state circles; the Free State Legislature in Topeka had repealed the "bogus laws" of the Territorial Legislature and appointed James Lane the head of a free state militia.

Keywords: Bogus laws; Bogus legislature; Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Business enterprises; Free state legislature; Free state militia; Hunting; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lecompton Constitution; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Military; Mills and mill-work; Missourians; Proslavery supporters; Sharps rifles; Skirmishing; Stanton, Frederick Perry, 1814-1894; Sugar Mound, Kansas Territory; Trego, Alice; Trego, Joseph Harrington


Photograph, Marais des Cygnes Massacre
Authors: Chapin, John R.
Date: 1858
An illustration of the Marais des Cygnes Massacre in Linn County, Kansas Territory, copied from Beyond the Mississippi by Albert. D. Richardson, 1867. In May 1858, Missourians crossed the border and murdered five Free-State men. This massacre was generally viewed as the last major violent occurrence during the territorial period. The site of the massacre is now one of the Kansas State Historical Society's historic properties.

Keywords: Book illustrations; Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Firearms; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Marais des Cygnes Massacre; Massacres; Photographs and Illustrations; Proslavery activities; Violence; Violent deaths


Letter, [S. F.] Burdick to Dear Brother, Oscar [Learnard]
Authors: Burdick, S.F.
Date: January 6, 1858
S. F. Burdick, referring to his friend, Oscar Learnard, as "brother", wrote to him from Learnard's home state of Vermont. Burdick asked Learnard if there was anything he might do "to advance the cause of liberty and justice", and told him that he had heard of troubles at Fort Scott, referring to an incident taking place on December 17, 1857, when free state men, who had been displaced from their claims in 1856, returned to take possession of them again. Firing was done on both sides, though no one was killed or arrested.

Keywords: Antislavery perspective; Border ruffians; Burdick, S.F.; Fort Scott, Kansas Territory; Kansas Nebraska Act; Learnard, Oscar E., 1832-1911; Lecompton Constitutional Convention, September 1857; Missourians; National politics; Popular sovereignty


Letter, Your devoted Husband [Joseph H. Trego] to My Dear wife [Alice Trego]
Authors: Trego, Joseph Harrington
Date: January 24, 1858
Joseph Trego wrote from Sugar Mound, Kansas Territory, to his wife, Alice, at their family's home in Illinois. Trego described how, since the shelter being built around the mill equipment was not yet complete, the wind and rain interfered with their ability to work. Though the work was hard, he favored the milling business over other means toward income. Trego responded to a newspaper article from the Rock Island Advertiser that his wife had sent him, deeming their coverage of the Kansas troubles "sensational." He expected that Fort Scott would soon be destroyed by free state militiamen, as "Bourbon County Bandits" (proslavery supporters) had been harassing extensively free state supporters in the area. Despite all this disorder, the development prospects of Mound City, in Linn County, appeared favorable.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Business enterprises; Fort Scott, Kansas Territory; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Mills and mill-work; Montgomery, James, 1814-1871; Mound City, Kansas Territory; Neosho, Kansas Territory; Newspapers; Postal service; Proslavery activities; Railroads; Rock Island Advertiser; Sugar Mound, Kansas Territory; Telegraph; Town development; Trego, Alice; Trego, Joseph Harrington; Weather


Letter, Your loving husband [Joseph H. Trego] to My Dear wife [Alice Trego]
Authors: Trego, Joseph Harrington
Date: February 11, 1858
Joseph Trego wrote from Sugar Mound, Kansas Territory, to his wife, Alice, at their family's home in Illinois. Trego responded emotionally to his wife's proposition that she would travel East in the spring to visit friends and come to the Territory in the fall, instead of the coming spring as previously planned; he conveyed great disappointment, but insisted that she go if she really wanted to. According to Trego, the structure that would shelter his mill would be raised the next day, and Fort Scott had been seized peacefully be free state men "as the villains fled to save their bacon." He doubted that the treaty drawn there would change the antagonistic conduct of the opposing sides.

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Fort Scott, Kansas Territory; Free state militia; Free state perspective; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Mills and mill-work; Sugar Mound, Kansas Territory; Trego, Alice; Trego, Joseph Harrington


Letter, J. G. Anderson to "Dear Brother"
Authors: Anderson, J. G.
Date: February 17, 1858
From "Camp near Luella K.T." on February 17, 1858, J. G. Anderson wrote to his brother regarding the "considerable excitement" that had recently resulted after a free state man was robbed in Fort Scott. Two companies of "Kansas Militia" were called out to arrest the thieves, "our company under Capt. [O.P.] Bayne and the Sugar Creek company under Capt. [James] Montgomery. When they arrived at "the Fort" on the 11th "the bloody villains" had already fled to Missouri. The letter is a "typical" mix of news about the Kansas troubles, work on the claim, and pleasantries about the folks back home. [Before the end of the year, Anderson would sign on with John Brown and follow him to Harpers Ferry.]

Keywords: Anderson, Jeremiah G.; Border disputes and warfare - Free state perspective; Border ruffians; Bourbon County, Kansas Territory; Fort Scott, Kansas Territory; Land claims; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Militia; Montgomery, James, 1814-1871; Sharps rifles; Weapons (see also Guns)


Letter, J. Williams to Governor [James W.] Denver
Authors: Williams, J.
Date: May 16, 1858
Williams, writing from Fort Scott, Kansas Territory to Governor James W. Denver, complained about the activities of James Montgomery and "his murderers & robbers" in Bourbon County. Williams, who displayed moderate views, condemned both proslavery and free state violence and maintained that the citizens of Bourbon County simply wanted to live in peace.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Bourbon County, Kansas Territory; Denver, James William, 1817-1892; Fort Scott, Kansas Territory; Griffith, William Riley; Montgomery, James, 1814-1871; Proslavery perspective; Violence; Williams, J.


Letter, Geo. W. Clarke to Saml. J. Jones
Authors: Clarke, George W.
Date: June 2, 1858
George W. Clarke, writing from Fort Scott, Kansas Territory to Samuel J. Jones (Sheriff Jones), described a May 30, 1858 incident in which Deputy U.S. Marshal Samuel D. Walker attempted to arrest him as a suspect in the Marais des Cygnes Massacre. Clarke declared that he was innocent of the charges and viewed Walker's arrest warrant as a "bogus writ." Clarke initially resisted arrest but claimed that he agreed to surrender to Lieutenant Shinn of the U.S. Army to prevent violence between Fort Scott residents and Walker's men. Clarke also described the unsuccessful efforts of angry Fort Scott residents to convince Walker to arrest James Montgomery.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Bourbon County, Kansas Territory; Clarke, George W.; Denver, James William, 1817-1892; Fort Scott, Kansas Territory; Hamelton, Charles A.; Jayhawkers; Jones, Samuel J. (Sheriff); Marais des Cygnes Massacre; Massacres; Montgomery, James, 1814-1871; Proslavery; Proslavery perspective; Proslavery supporters; United States. Army; Violence; Walker, Samuel Douglas


Letter, H. P. A. Smith to Jas. W. Denver
Authors: Smith, H. P. A.
Date: June 3, 1858
H. P. A. Smith, writing from Fort Scott, Kansas Territory to Governor James W. Denver, reported on events of May 30, 1858 involving Deputy U.S. Marshal Samuel D. Walker's attempt to arrest George W. Clarke on charges that Clarke participated in the Marais des Cygnes Massacre. Smith questioned Walker's authority to arrest Clarke, observing that Walker's arrest warrant had been issued by a justice of the peace from a township, Mapleton, that did not yet exist. Smith commented on the general state of unrest in the area and declared that the "County is in fact in open rebellion . . . . complete anarchy prevails." He encouraged Governor Denver to come to Fort Scott to assess the situation for himself and to help restore order.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Bourbon County, Kansas Territory; Clarke, George W.; Denver, James William, 1817-1892; Fort Scott, Kansas Territory; Jayhawkers; Montgomery, James, 1814-1871; Proslavery; Proslavery perspective; Smith, H. P. A.; Walker, Samuel Douglas


Letter, John Vansickle to Dear Sir
Authors: Vansickle, John H.
Date: July 18, 1858
John Vansickle, recently married, wrote from Kansas City, Missouri, where he was purchasing goods and provisions with his wife for their new home. Vansickle communicated the prospect of a good crop this season, along with details referring to the upcoming Lecompton Constitution ratification election and the Marais des Cygnes Massacre, which occurred the past May. He also encouraged the recipient of this letter to come to Kansas Territory for a visit and gave news of his encounter with various friends when in St. Louis.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Crops; Election, Lecompton Constitution ratification, August 1858; Farmers; Gold mines and mining; Kansas City, Missouri; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Marais des Cygnes Massacre; Massacres; Merchandise; Montgomery County, Kansas Territory; Vansickle, John H.


Letter, E. C. Andreas to Friend [William] Goodnow
Authors: Andreas, E.C.
Date: January 25, 1859
E. C. Andreas wrote from New England to his friend William Goodnow in Kansas Territory. Andreas reacted to news he had heard regarding "commotion" in the Territory caused by "modern Democrats" and border ruffians, calling them "far worse than fever & ague." He communicated the opinion that there was little hope for Kansas to be admitted to the Union under the current Congress and Administration. Andreas also mentioned Goodnow's management of his land titles.

Keywords: Antislavery perspective; Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Buchanan administration; Crops; Democratic Party (U.S.); Goodnow, William E.; National politics; Statehood (see also Admission, Kansas)


Letter, S. C. Pomeroy to Dear Sir [Isaac Goodnow]
Authors: Pomeroy, S. C. (Samuel Clarke), 1816-1891
Date: March 8, 1859
Samuel Pomeroy wrote to Isaac Goodnow from Atchison, Kansas Territory. Pomeroy told Goodnow he was not disposed at the moment to come to Manhattan on account of lawsuits and railroad business, but would come as soon as possible. He looked forward to being present when the cornerstone of the Bluemont College building was placed, and asked Goodnow to list him as a subscriber to Manhattan's new newspaper. Pomeroy also referred to the upcoming election the following June, which would determine the delegates to attend the Wyandotte Constitutional Convention, and prayed for a successful outcome.

Keywords: Bluemont Central College; Border ruffians; Denison, Joseph; Election, Wyandotte Constitution delegates to convention, June 1859; Goodnow, Isaac T., 1814-1894; Hannibal and St. Joseph Railroad Company; Manhattan, Kansas Territory; Newspapers; Pomeroy, S. C. (Samuel Clarke), 1816-1891; Skirmishing; Wyandotte Constitutional Convention, July 1859


Letter, Frank Walker to Dear Sister [Augusta Walker]
Authors: Walker, Frank
Date: April 10, 1859
This letter from Frank Walker was written in Mound City, Linn County, Kansas Territory. He continued to describe his plans to acquire land and his hopes that it would increase in value. He recounted an incident in which someone named Byron was shot by "Missourians." He provided some detail of the encounter between Byron and 6 other free staters against 46 men.

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Free state perspective; Land claims; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Mound City, Kansas Territory; Walker, Frank


Letter, Wm Taylor to S. S. Cox
Authors: Taylor, William
Date: July 31, 1859
William Taylor wrote to S. S. Cox regarding his impressions of the Wyandotte Constitution, which had been recently submitted to Congress. He then added details praising the peace and fertility of the land in Kansas Territory. Taylor concluded by supposing "that there will not any disturbance"caused by the border ruffians in the Territory.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Cox, S.S.; Kansas Territory. Legislature; Landscape; Leavenworth County, Kansas Territory; Leavenworth, Kansas Territory; Taylor, William; Women Suffrage; Womens rights; Wyandotte Constitution; Wyandotte Constitutional Convention, July 1859


Letter, John Q. Anderson to "Capt [John] Brown"
Authors: Anderson, John Q.
Date: November 25, 1859
John Anderson, of Eddyville, Iowa, the brother of one of the Harpers Ferry raiders, Jeremiah Goldsmith Anderson, wrote to Captain Brown, who was awaiting execution in Charlestown, Va., jail, seeking more information about his brother's death at Harpers Ferry. He had been "two years a target in Kansas for the Border Ruffians and all, for what? Why because he purchased a claim & wished to settle on it & live by the sweat of his own brow. And now has died trying to enforce the golden rule."

Keywords: Anderson, Jeremiah G.; Border disputes and warfare - Free state perspective; Border ruffians; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Free state settlers; Harpers Ferry, Virginia


Letter, James Hanway to R. J. Hinton
Authors: Hanway, James
Date: December 5, 1859
In response to the Redpath/Hinton notice in the Lawrence Republican, Hanway wrote from his home in Shermansville, Franklin County, to share his story about "our friend John Brown," and he hoped their efforts would convey to all Brown's "the character" and "motives" and "place him in his true light before the world." Hanway highlights the attempted "rescue of Lawrence" in May 1856; the subsequent "'Tragedy'" on Pottawatomie Creek, about which Brown personal told Hanaway, "it was a just act, to take the lives of those 5 pro-slave ruffians"; how John Brown was a surveyor who used his profession to gather intellegence among proslavery settlers; the fact, according to Hanway, that the Doyles and others were actively engaged in efforts to run free state settlers out of the area; and specifically denies the story that Frederick Brown was "insane."

Keywords: Abolitionists; Border ruffians; Brown, Frederick; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Free state cause; Hanway, James; Hinton, Richard Josiah; Lawrence Republican; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Pottawatomie Creek, Kansas Territory; Pottawatomie Massacre, May 1856; Proslavery settlers; Redpath, James, 1833-1891; Sack of Lawrence, May 1856; Shermansville, Kansas Territory; Slave power; Surveyors


Letter, William F. Creitz to "Col. James Redpath"
Authors: Creitz, William F.
Date: December 17, 1859
William F. Creitz of Holton, who had served under Aaron Stevens as captain of a Kansas militia company, wrote Redpath regarding "the particulars of 'Old John Brown's' final departure from this territory." Brown and company, which included "eleven fugitives," reached Holton on January 27, 1859, and Creitz described the events that followed, to which he was an "eyewitness" and participant, including the Battle of the Spurs. Creitz's "article" was prepared "to assist you [Redpath] in your praiseworthy undertaking that of publishing the lives of those heroic men." Redpath published "Echoes of Harper's Ferry" in 1860, and Richard J. Hinton used this material in his "John Brown and His Men (1894).

Keywords: Abolitionists; Atchison, David Rice, 1807-1886; Battles; Border ruffians; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Free state militia; Fugitive Slave Law; Fugitive slaves; Hinton, Richard Josiah; Holton, Kansas Territory; Jackson County, Kansas Territory (see also Calhoun County, Kansas Territory); Kagi, John Henry; Lecompton, Kansas Territory; Militia; Nebraska Territory; Redpath, James, 1833-1891; Sharps rifles; Slave power; Spurs, Battle of the; Stevens, Aaron Dwight (see also Whipple, Charles); Topeka, Kansas Territory; Underground railroad; United States marshals


Letter, C. G. Allen to Redpath and Hinton
Authors: Allen, C. G.
Date: December 1859
Allen, a "minister of the Gospel" at Cottonwood Falls, K.T., wrote in response to the Redpath/Hinton call for "anecdotes & reminiscences" concerning "the brave & philanthropic [John] Brown," who the preacher first met in Lawrence in 1856. Allen left Lawrence when a call came for volunteers to aid in the defense of Osawatomie in August of that year and while there engaged saw his first "Border Ruffians," who he described as "miserable specimens of humanity. They were ragged & dirty. Their cloths & faces were to a considerable extent covered with tobacco spit." Allen and the men he was with actually missed the Battle of Osawatomie by moving south before the attack in an effort to find the attackers before they reached the town.

Keywords: Abolitionists; Border ruffians; Brown, Frederick; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Child, Lydia Maria Francis, 1802-1880; Fort Scott, Kansas Territory; Free state militia; Free state settlers; Hinton, Richard Josiah; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Missouri; Osawatomie, Battle of; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Proslavery activities; Proslavery supporters; Redpath, James, 1833-1891; Sharps rifles; Stanton, Kansas Territory


Letter, Paul Shepherd to James Redpath
Authors: Shepherd, Paul
Date: January 3, 1860
From Dover, Michigan, Paul Shepherd--formerly of Kansas Territory--wrote Redpath to pass along "some useful information, in repect to John H. Kagi." Of most interest, perhaps is Shepherd's account of the "shoot out" at Tecumseh between Kagi and Judge Rush Elmore, who Kagi had accused of "being a prime mover in the murderous attack upon him" at Lecompton in mid-January 1857.

Keywords: Bogus legislature; Border ruffians; Cato, Sterling G.; Courts; Elmore, Rush; Free state cause; Free state militia; Geary, John White, 1819-1873; Kagi, John Henry; Lecompton, Kansas Territory; Moffett, Charles; National Era; Newspapers - Free State; Proslavery perspective; Stevens, Aaron Dwight (see also Whipple, Charles); Tecumseh, Kansas Territory; Topeka Legislature (see Free state legislature); Topeka boys; Topeka, Kansas Territory; Violence


Letter, Joseph Gardner to George L. Stearns
Authors: Gardner, Joseph
Date: June 9, 1860
From Lawrence, Kansas, Joseph Gardner described one of the last battles of the border war. The attack Gardner had feared came "last night between 12 & 1." With the arms Stearns had made available, the attackers were repulsed, but "one of my [Gardner's] colored men, who had fought most nobly," took "a tremendous charge of buck shot" and died. His last words were "fight, fight hard!!"

Keywords: African Americans; Battles; Border ruffians; Clinton, Kansas Territory; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Firearms; Fugitive slaves; Gardner, Joseph; Guns; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Stearns, Geo. L. (George Luther), 1809-1867; Washington Creek, Kansas Territory


Letter, James Montgomery to George L. Stearns
Authors: Montgomery, James , 1814-1871
Date: October 6, 1860
Having returned from a trip to the East (where he visited Stearns, Horace Greeley, and others in Boston, New York, and Philadelphia), Montgomery wrote from Mound City, Linn County, that he "found the people greatly excited." News of violence directed against free state men in Texas and Arkansas had awakened Kansans' sense of urgency, as Montgomery continued his efforts to free slaves and undercut the slave economy of western Missouri.

Keywords: Arkansas; Border ruffians; Free state supporters; Fugitive slaves; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Missouri; Montgomery, James, 1814-1871; Mound City, Kansas Territory; Proslavery activities; Republican Party (U.S.: 1854- ); Stearns, Geo. L. (George Luther), 1809-1867; Texas


Letter, J. H. Vansickle to Dear Sir
Authors: Vansickle, John H.
Date: November 27, 1860
John Vansickle wrote from Bourbon County regarding the current economic conditions in Kansas Territory. Vansickle stated that the weather had remained dry for almost 12 months, and that corn and other crops had become valuable commodities. He added that the ruffians and the lawless part of the community would not help themselves by working when they had the chance. Vansickle concluded by saying he had plenty of food, and he discussed land claim opportunities with the recipient.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Bourbon County, Kansas Territory; Droughts; Economic conditions; Land acquisition; Medary, S. (Samuel), 1801-1864; Montgomery, James, 1814-1871; Prices; Vansickle, John H.


Circular, Aid to Kansas
Authors: Ladies' Kansas Aid Society of Richmond
Date: c. 1860
This circular, issued by the Ladies' Kansas Aid Society of Richmond, announces the placement of a contribution box in town, with proceeds supporting the "suffering friends of Freedom in Kansas" in their fight against the "outrages of the Border Ruffians." The Aid Society is most likely based in a New England town named Richmond, though the exact location is unknown.

Keywords: Border ruffians; Circulars; Eddy, Jennie; Emigrant aid companies - Free state; Free state support; Free state supporters; Howells, Mary A.; Ladies' Kansas Aid Society of Richmond; National politics; Relief; Vanderburg, Lydia A.


J.W.H. Golden Rifle
Authors: No authors specified.
Date: 1862
Rifle made by J.W.H. Golden while superintendent of the Fort Leavenworth Arsenal, 1862. Golden settled in Leavenworth in October, 1854 and was shot by border ruffians near Tonganoxie on September 6, 1856. The bullet remained in his throat until his death in 1894.

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Firearms; Fort Leavenworth, Kansas Territory; Golden, J.W.H.; Guns; Objects; Weapons (see also Guns)


Narrative, Account of the Life of Fredrick Brown
Authors: Adair, Samuel Lyle
Date: c. 1857
In this undated document, Samuel Adair related significant events in the life of Frederick Brown, one of John Brown's five sons. Frederick, alongside his father, participated in the Pottawatomie Massacre and other raids against proslavery supporters in Kansas Territory until his roadside murder by Martin White in August of 1856. This document also contains part of a letter to the Rev. S. S. Jocelyn recounting the winter's hardships.

Keywords: Adair, Samuel Lyle; Battles; Black Jack, Battle of; Border ruffians; Brown, Frederick; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Daily life; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Free state activities; Free state constitutions; Illness; Jocelyn, S. S.; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Lykins County, Kansas Territory (see also Miami County, Kansas); Miami County, Kansas (see also Lykins County, Kansas Territory); Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Pottawatomie Creek, Kansas Territory; Sack of Lawrence, May 1856; Topeka Constitutional Convention, October 1855; Violence; Violent deaths; Weather; White, Martin


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

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