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59 results for Free state perspective:
Circular, To the Women of the State of New York
Authors: Nichols, Clarina Irene Howard, 1810-1885
Date: c. 1856
This circular was composed of a letter written by Clarina Nichols to the women of New York. In this eloquent letter she attempted to persuade them to send support to the people of Kansas, appealing to their hearts and their experiences as mothers.

Keywords: Circulars; Food; Free state perspective; New York; Nichols, Clarina Irene Howard, 1810-1885; Relief; Women


Letter, C. Robinson to E. Thayer
Authors: Robinson, Charles
Date: April 2, 1855
Charles Robinson, writing from Lawrence, Kansas Territory to Eli Thayer in Worcester, Massachusetts, described voting irregularities in the March 30, 1855 election of members to the territorial legislature. Robinson maintained that the election was "controlled entirely by Missourians" who came to the territory, took over the polling places, and cast illegal ballots to ensure that proslavery supporters were elected to the legislature. Robinson also reported that free staters in Lawrence had formed themselves into four military companies, and urged Thayer to send Sharps rifles and cannons for these forces.

Keywords: Cannons; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Election fraud; Election, Territorial Legislature, March 1855; Free state perspective; Guns; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Militia; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Sharps rifles; Thayer, Eli, 1819-1899; Weapons (see also Guns)


Letter, Marc [Parrott] to Dear Edd [Edwin A. Parrott]
Authors: Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879
Date: June 11, 1855
Marcus J. Parrott wrote from the Shawnee Methodist Mission in Kansas Territory to his brother, Edwin A. Parrott, in Dayton, Ohio. Marcus reported to Edwin that he was in need of money, and told him of his plan to borrow some from their father to invest. He expressed his support for the free state cause, but disagreed with recent violent acts that had occurred on the part of a free state man. Marcus also referred to the Territorial Legislature, which would convene at Pawnee, and anticipated "a grand row and smash up as a result".

Keywords: Free state perspective; Johnson County, Kansas Territory; Kansas Territory. Legislature - Pawnee/Shawnee Mission; Parrott, Edwin A.; Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879; Pawnee, Kansas Territory; Shawnee Indians; Weston, Missouri; Westport, Missouri


Certificate of Agency, James Abbott as Agent of the Kansas Herald of Freedom
Authors: Brown, George W (George Washington), 1820-1915
Date: July 10, 1855
This certificate granted James Abbott, now of Blanton, Kansas Territory, agency to sell subscriptions to the Kansas Herald of Freedom newspaper. The document was signed and sealed by George W. Brown, publisher and editor of the free state paper.

Keywords: Abbott, James Burnett; Blanton, Kansas Territory; Brown, George W. (George Washington), 1820-1915; Business enterprises; Certificates; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Free state perspective; Herald of Freedom; Newspapers


Letter, C. [Charles] Robinson to A. A. Lawrence
Authors: Robinson, Charles
Date: September 28, 1855
Charles Robinson, writing from Lawrence, K. T. to Amos A. Lawrence, expressed his optimism about the prospects of Kansas entering the union as a free state within one year. Robinson also informed Lawrence that he had drawn upon him for $1000 to cover New England Emigrant Aid Company expenses.

Keywords: Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Free state cause; Free state perspective; Indian floats; Lawrence, Amos Adams, 1814-1886; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; New England Emigrant Aid Company; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894


Letter, Hiram Hill to Dear Brother
Authors: Hill, Hiram
Date: December 7, 1855
Hiram Hill, a resident of Williamsburgh, Massachusetts en route to Kansas City and ultimately to Lawrence, Kansas Territory, wrote from Richmond, Missouri to his brother. He relayed the murder of an unnamed free state man (likely Charles W. Dow), the gathering of 1,100 free state and 800 proslavery men at Lawrence, and other Wakarusa War events. Hill, a free state supporter, felt that the information he received from Missourians was inaccurate or exaggerated. He doubted reports that 60 proslavery men had been killed at Lawrence, or of abolitionists driving proslavery settlers from their homes. Hill reported the arrests of free state men including Judge Johnson and General Pomeroy, who he heard had escaped.

Keywords: Abolitionists; Cannons; Dow, Charles W.; Free state perspective; Health; Hill, Hiram; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Missourians; Pomeroy, S. C. (Samuel Clarke), 1816-1891; Proslavery perspective; Sharps rifles; Violence; Wakarusa War, November-December 1855


Pamphlet, History of Kanzas
Authors: Walker, George
Date: 1855
The full title of George Walker's pamphlet is "History of Kanzas, also, Information Regarding Routes, Laws, etc, etc". Walker, an Agent and Master of Emigration for the New York Kanzas League, included what he saw as "all the information required by an emigrant to Kanzas; so far, at least, as relates to the situation of the Territory". He also included advice when traveling through slave states, suggesting that "the emigrant should avoid all unnecessary allusion to slavery."

Keywords: Economic development; Free state perspective; Kansas Territory; Landscape; Legal documents; Livestock; Natural resources; Roads; Slavery; Squatter sovereignty; Timber; Transportation; Travel; Travel literature; Walker, George


Narrative," A Twelve Months Practical Life in Kansas Territory, written by an actual settler"
Authors: Tovey, Robert Atkins
Date: ca. 1855
Robert Atkins Tovey wrote these pages so that "those who are going forth with their wives & children, their property, yea their all on earth should have the information covering the country to which they are making a Pilgrimage" from someone who has recently made the same journey. Broken up into chapters by subject, Tovey gave advice about the journey and settlement, provisions, land claims, soil, and weather, in addition to providing commentary about the current political situation and his disgust at the "Mob law" being imposed by the Missourians.

Keywords: African Americans; American Indians (see also Native Americans); Daily life; Election fraud; Free state perspective; Kansas Territory; Landscape; Missourians; Native Americans; Reeder, Andrew H. (Andrew Horatio), 1807-1864; Settlement; Shannon, Wilson, 1802-1877; Slavery; Slaves; Tovey, Robert Atkins; Transportation; Travel; Weather


Letter, Samuel Adair to the Free Mission Sewing Society of the First Congregational Church
Authors: Adair, Samuel Lyle
Date: Circa 1856
Rev. Adair wrote from Osawatomie, K.T. and described the physical characteristics of Kansas as well as the efforts on behalf of the free state cause. The letter detailed efforts to establish Congregational churches in Kansas as well as discussing the activities of other denominations.

Keywords: Adair, Samuel Lyle; Congregational churches; Free state legislature; Free state perspective; Landscape; Lykins County, Kansas Territory (see also Miami County, Kansas); Methodists; Miami County, Kansas (see also Lykins County, Kansas Territory); Missionaries; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory


Letter, [Josiah Miller] to Dear Father and Mother
Authors: Miller, Josiah
Date: January 25, 1856
Josiah Miller, responding to his family's concerns about traveling West, wrote to his Father and Mother in South Carolina. He told them that they would be better off leaving the South, and that they should begin their travels west as soon as they were ready, in spite of any violent conflict that might be taking place in Kansas Territory. Miller referred to a specific incident occurring a few days earlier on January 17, when free state men, on their way home from an election of State officers under the Topeka Constitution, were attacked by a group of Missourians. Miller also communicated that, although he was a free state man, he did not like the "Yankees' " approach to the conflict with the proslavery supporters.

Keywords: Barber, Thomas W.; Brown, Reese P.; Emigration and immigration; Free state perspective; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Miller, Josiah; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; South Carolina; Southerners


Letter, O. E. L[earnard] to My Dear Parents and Sister
Authors: Learnard, Oscar E.
Date: April 6, 1856
In this, his first extant letter from Kansas Territory, Oscar Learnard wrote his parents and sister in Vermont that Lawrence was now his "distant and strangely romantic retreat." This letter recorded Learnard's early impressions of "unfortunate abused Kansas." The situation was bad, but the reality of "Kansas affairs" was being distorted in the Eastern press. Learnard made reference to the bogus laws, the Free State movement, and the anticipated congressional investigation.

Keywords: Bogus laws; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Emigration and immigration; Free state movement (see also Topeka Movement); Free state perspective; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Learnard, Oscar E., 1832-1911; Learnard, S. T.; Vermont


Letter, Jas Finley to Dear Sister
Authors: Finley, James Agnew
Date: May 24, 1856
James A. Finley, a Lawrence resident at the time of the Sack of Lawrence, wrote to his sister recounting the events that had transpired only three days before. Concisely but vividly he described events as they unfolded from the morning of May 21st, when David Atchison "planted 2 cannon upon the hill above town." Finley, a more fortunate man than many in Lawrence that day, claimed to have suffered no losses in the incident.

Keywords: Atchison, David Rice, 1807-1886; Deitzler, George W.; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Eldridge House; Finley, James Agnew; Free state perspective; Guns; Jones, Samuel J. (Sheriff); Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Missourians; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Sack of Lawrence, May 1856; Shannon, Wilson, 1802-1877; Sharps rifles; Smith, George W.; United States marshals; Weapons (see also Guns)


Letter, C. Robinson to My Dear S. [Sara Robinson]
Authors: Robinson, Charles
Date: May 29, 1856
Charles Robinson wrote to his wife, Sara Robinson, his first letter during his detention, which would last until Sept 10, 1856. He reported to her that so far he had been treated like a gentleman, and that his quarters were comfortable and would also accommodate her, if she would like to join him. Robinson also expressed regret at the destruction of their home during the sack of Lawrence.

Keywords: Free state perspective; Prisoners; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Robinson, Sara T. L. (Sara Tappan Lawrence), 1827-1911; Sack of Lawrence, May 1856; Treason


Letter, G. W. Brown to Eli Thayer, Esq.
Authors: Brown, George W (George Washington), 1820-1915
Date: June 4, 1856
George Washington Brown, editor of the Herald of Freedom newspaper, was one of seven free state leaders arrested on May 14, 1856 on charges of high treason and held prisoner by federal troops near Lecompton. G. W. Brown described the sack of Lawrence and the destruction of his printing press, commented upon the harshness of his prison conditions, and asked Eli Thayer to do anything in his power to help secure his release.

Keywords: Brown, George W. (George Washington), 1820-1915; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Free state cause; Free state perspective; Herald of Freedom; Journalism; Lecompton, Kansas Territory; Press; Prisoners; Sack of Lawrence, May 1856; Slave power; Thayer, Eli, 1819-1899; Treason


Letter, O. E. Learnard to Dear Friends
Authors: Learnard, Oscar E.
Date: June 6, 1856
From an embattled Lawrence, Learnard again wrote of near daily "occurrences of exciting interest," including skirmishes between the two "antagonistic parties" and actions of federal troops to "quell disturbances." The problem was with Missourians who had crossed over the border, not "actual settlers." Learnard claimed to be ready to do battle with them over the issue of "slavery or liberty in this country," and predicted that if things continued in this same direction, the entire country would soon be "embroiled in civil war."

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare; Civil war; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Federal troops; Free state perspective; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Learnard, Oscar E., 1832-1911; Skirmishing; Slavery; Vermont; Violence


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


George Washington Brown to Friends
Authors: Brown, George W (George Washington), 1820-1915
Date: ca. August 1856
Unsigned letter, probably written by George Washington Brown while he was being held prisoner at a camp near Lecompton on treason charges, offering military advice to free state leaders and commenting on events in the Lecompton area.

Keywords: Brown, George W. (George Washington), 1820-1915; Free state activities; Free state perspective; Hutchinson, William, 1823-1904; Lecompton, Kansas Territory; Military


Letter, [I. Sabin] to Chad Kellogg
Authors: Sabin, I.
Date: August 8, 1856
I. Sabin wrote to Chad Kellogg regarding real-estate transactions and troubles along the Missouri-Kansas border. Sabin, the commander of a 40-man company against pro-slavery forces, described the amount of firearms needed by each fighting man and his lack of money with which to purchase them. The letter is written on a printed circular "Appeal of Kansas to the Voters of the Free States," which enumerates various offenses done to free state men, focusing particularly on the contested election of 1856.

Keywords: Barber, Thomas W.; Brown, Frederick; Buford, Jefferson; Free state perspective; Guns; Kellogg, Chad; Leavenworth County, Kansas Territory; Leavenworth, Kansas Territory; Pierce, Franklin, 1804-1869; Popular sovereignty; Sabin, I.; Shannon, Wilson, 1802-1877; Sharps rifles; Shawnee County, Kansas Territory; Topeka, Kansas Territory; Wakarusa War, November-December 1855; Weapons (see also Guns)


Circular, Kansas -- Help! Help!
Authors: Hurd, H. B.; Lawrence Citizens
Date: August 13, 1856
This circular was composed of two parts. The first section was a letter written from Lawrence to the National Kansas Committee, asked for help because of the conflict in Kansas, stating that "instant action alone can save our people from destruction." The letter briefly mentioned the recent attack on Lawrence and the proslavery forces which were gathering and organizing. Although there was a lull in the fighting, the citizens of Lawrence were looking for assistance and relief. The second part was a response written by H. B. Hurd, secretary of the National Kansas Committee, encouraging emigration to Kansas but raising the possibility that free state settlers in the territory must at times defend their rights. He wrote that "Kansas is now in a state of open war."

Keywords: Circulars; Free state cause; Free state perspective; Hurd, H. B.; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Missourians; National Kansas Committee; Proslavery activities; Relief; Sack of Lawrence, May 1856


Copy of letter, S. L. Adair to Mrs. H. L. Hibbard
Authors: Adair, Samuel Lyle
Date: August 14, 1856
Adair, writing from Osawatomie, reported on conditions in Kansas. Mrs. Hibbard was the president of the Woman's Kansas Aid and Liberty Association of Chicago, Illinois. He reported that many recent emigrants were ill and others were using up their reserves to help others, hoping they would be repaid by aid received in Kansas. He also reported that a group of Georgians camped near Osawatomie and ran off more than 18 horses. Some free state men were prepared to confront them but they left the area. Adair wrote of rumors that a large force was coming to burn Osawatomie.

Keywords: Adair, Samuel Lyle; Chicago, Illinois; Emigration and immigration; Free state perspective; Hibbard, Mrs. H. L.; Illness; Lykins County, Kansas Territory (see also Miami County, Kansas); Miami County, Kansas (see also Lykins County, Kansas Territory); Migration, internal; Osawatomie, Battle of; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Proslavery activities; Proslavery settlers; Women


Titus Sword
Authors: No authors specified.
Date: 1856
Three months after the sack of Lawrence, the Free State Milita attacked the pro-slavery stronghold of Fort Titus. Free State forces were lead by Colonel James A. Harvey. Named after Colonel Henry T. Titus, a local pro-slavery commander, Fort Titus actually was a cabin located in Lecompton. After the Free State victory on August 16th, 1856, Colonel Titus surrendered this sword to Colonel Harvey.

Keywords: Battles; Border disputes and warfare; Fort Titus, Battle of; Free state; Free state militia; Free state perspective; Harvey, James A.; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Leavenworth County, Kansas Territory; Lecompton, Kansas Territory; Objects; Swords and daggers; Titus, Henry Theodore; Violence; Weapons (see also Guns)


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


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


Letter, A. S. Harris to Dear Sir [Thaddeus Hyatt]
Authors: Harris, A S.
Date: September 22, 1856
A.S. Harris wrote from New York to Thaddeus Hyatt regarding an article in the Journal of Commerce that dealt with the upcoming Presidential election and the strife in Kansas. The article included a rather lengthy attack on emigrant aid societies.

Keywords: Election, Presidential, 1856; Emigrant aid companies; Emigration and immigration; Free state perspective; Hyatt, Thaddeus; Kansas question; 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


Circular, An Appeal for Kansas
Authors: Hyatt, Thaddeus
Date: October 10, 1856
This letter was written by Thaddeus Hyatt, president of the National Kansas Committee, to the New York Tribune editor, who printed it in the paper. It was subtitled, "with practical suggestions for its relief." This committee, also known as the Kansas Relief Committee in its early years, sought to send free state settlers into Kansas Territory and to obtain support for Kansas from the Northeast.

Keywords: Arny, W. F. M. (William Frederick Milton), 1813-1881; Chicago, Illinois; Circulars; Clothing and dress; Emigrant aid companies; Emigrant aid companies - Free state; Food; Free state perspective; Hyatt, Thaddeus; Kansas Relief Committee; National Kansas Committee; New York Tribune; Relief


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, M. C. Dickey to Mr. [Thaddeus] Hyatt
Authors: Dickey, Milton C.
Date: October 23, 1856
This letter to Thaddeus Hyatt of the National Kansas Committee, written by Milton Dickey from Mt. Pleasant, Iowa, informed Hyatt of Dickey's journey west. The author described the hardships endured by Kansas settlers, as well as the enthralling tale of a free state man who escaped from the prison at Lecompton.

Keywords: Cannons; Dickey, Milton C.; Donalson, Israel B.; Emigration and immigration; Firearms; Free state perspective; Hyatt, Thaddeus; Lecompton, Kansas Territory; Mt. Pleasant, Iowa; Prisoners; Prisons; Relief; Root, Joseph P., 1826-1885; Sharps rifles; Slavery; United States. Army


Letter, Dunn to Mr. T. W. Higginson
Authors: No authors specified.
Date: October 23, 1856
In this letter to Thomas W. Higginson, an agent of the Massachusetts Kansas Aid Committee, Mr. Dunn wrote from Oskaloosa, Iowa, regarding the current troubles in Kansas Territory. He was attempting to gather together a company as a response to Gov. Gary's [sic] election and the U. S. Army's efforts to arrest many prominent free state men. According to the author, "the U. S. troops by the order of Gary are taking every free State man they can get hold of." He was eager to hear advice from Higginson about the best way to proceed, and he laid out his plan to amass about 60 men to fight against the border ruffians who had invaded the territory. He hoped that Higginson would support him in this matter by obtaining provisions. Dunn maintained that this plan came from his sense of duty; it did not arise from a warlike spirit.

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare; Eldridge, Shalor Winchell, 1816-1899; Free state activities; Free state perspective; Geary, John White, 1819-1873; Higginson, Thomas Wentworth, 1823-1911; Pomeroy, S. C. (Samuel Clarke), 1816-1891; United States. Army


Letter, R. J. Hinton to Rev. T. W. Higginson
Authors: Hinton, R. J.
Date: November 6, 1856
This letter from R. J. Hinton was written from Lawrence, Kansas Territory and was addressed to Rev. Higginson, a radical abolitionist and agent of the Massachusetts Kansas Aid Committee. The letter is filled with information about the struggle for Kansas. Hinton mentioned the trials of the free state prisoners at Lecompton and Governor Geary's order to arrest other free state figures. Colonel Titus was also threatening to help the U. S. troops arrest free state men. Apparently a Captain Homes [sic] from New York had become so frustrated that he had collected several followers and was determined to administer his own brand of justice. Hinton did not completely approve of such action, claiming that while it was understandable, it was "not generally beneficial to our cause." Hinton had experienced some personal troubles as well, when some thieves who claimed to be free state men carried off the belongings of his company, settled at Lexington. The letter concluded with updates about the various men in his company.

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare; Dunning, John; Eldridge, Shalor Winchell, 1816-1899; Free state perspective; Geary, John White, 1819-1873; Higginson, Thomas Wentworth, 1823-1911; Hinton, Richard Josiah; Lecompton, Kansas Territory; Lexington Township, Kansas Territory; Prisoners; Proslavery activities; Stearns, Geo. L. (George Luther), 1809-1867; Titus, Henry Theodore; United States. Army; White, Martin


Letter, B. Darrach to Rev. S. L. Adair
Authors: Darrach, Barstow
Date: November 27, 1856
Dr. Darrach had returned to New York Hospital after being in Kansas. He wrote that he felt the prospects for Kansas are not very favorable. He was concerned that some do not want a "revolution" to result or that Buchanan will not support "freedom," He felt it would take a large emigration of settlers to Kansas to make it a free state. He was sending clothing, cloth and blankets.

Keywords: Adair, Samuel Lyle; Buchanan, James, 1791-1868; Darrach, Barstow; Free state perspective; New York; Relief


Letter, Caleb S. Pratt to My Dear Sir [Rev. T. W. Higginson]
Authors: Pratt, Caleb S.
Date: December 1, 1856
This letter was written by Caleb Pratt from Lawrence, Kansas, to Thomas W. Higginson in Worcester, Massachusetts. He thanked Higginson for the revolvers that he had furnished for Pratt's artillery company; Pratt truly appreciated "the high minded reflecting men of the north." Pratt also spoke of the uneasy peace, stating that the free state population were still prepared to fiercely resist any encroachment on their liberty, although they were at times discouraged and war-weary. He also mentioned the election of President Buchanan less than a month before. Pratt informed Higginson of the escape of the free state prisoners from Tecumseh, although he was sure that Higginson was already aware of the incident. Apparently, Pratt had hoped to help with their escape, but he was too late. Other prisoners had also effected an escape from the Lecompton prison.

Keywords: Buchanan, James, 1791-1868; Democratic Party (U.S.); Free state militia; Free state perspective; Lecompton, Kansas Territory; Pratt, Caleb S.; Prisoners; Stubbs militia company; Tecumseh, Kansas Territory; Titus, Henry Theodore


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


Letter, B. Darrach to Rev. S. L. Adair
Authors: Darrach, Barstow
Date: December 17, 1856
Doctor B. Darrach wrote from the New York Hospital and commented on published reports that imply that prospects for Kansas becoming a free state are improving. Darrach shared his thoughts on Republicans and Democrats at the national level and also on reactions of southerners. Darrach also described his personal plans that will prevent him from returning to Kansas.

Keywords: Adair, Samuel Lyle; Darrach, Barstow; Democratic Party (U.S.); Free state perspective; New York; Republican Party (U.S.: 1854- ); Southerners


Letter, J. H. Kagi to "My dear Father"
Authors: Kagi, John Henry
Date: December 20, 1856
Just released from "prison" after three months, John H. Kagi wrote to his father (who still resided in their native Ohio but was then in Nebraska City) from Topeka, regarding the poor state of his health and finances, as well as politics and future plans. Kragi wanted his father and/or his father's money in KT as soon as possible.

Keywords: Bogus legislature; Democratic Party (U.S.); Free state cause; Free state legislature; Free state perspective; Kagi, John Henry; Nebraska City, Nebraska Territory; Ohio; Topeka Tribune


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


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


Statement of Lemuel Knapp
Authors: National Kansas Committee
Date: January 5, 1857
This testimony, recorded by the National Kansas Committee, describes the Kansas experience of Lemuel Knapp, a settler who emigrated to the area near Fort Riley, Kansas. His statement includes personal information as well as comments on the development of Pawnee City and the role that it played in the early years of Kansas Territory. It also relates an account of how the President ordered the destruction of Pawnee City because the newly drawn boundaries placed it on the Fort Riley Military Reserve.

Keywords: Cooke, Philip St. George; Fort Riley, Kansas Territory; Free state perspective; Houses; Knapp, Lemuel; Montgomery, William R.; Ogden, Edmund Augustus; Ogden, Kansas Territory; Pawnee Town Association; Pawnee, Kansas Territory; Reeder, Andrew H. (Andrew Horatio), 1807-1864


Letter, B. Darrach to Rev. S. L. Adair
Authors: Darrach, Barstow
Date: January 8, 1857
Darrach at New York Hospital commented on events at the national level and the prospect of little support for the free state cause from Congress or the President. He reported that John Brown was in New York speaking about Kansas and trying to raise some funds and other support.

Keywords: Adair, Samuel Lyle; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Buchanan, James, 1791-1868; Darrach, Barstow; Free state perspective; National politics; Pierce, Franklin, 1804-1869


Letter, J. H. Kagi to "Dear Father"
Authors: Kagi, John Henry
Date: January 26, 1857
Written on stationery that included a item from the Kansas Tribune, "Appeal of Kansas to the Voters of the Free States," Kagi wrote his father, who was still in Nebraska, regarding his continuing problems with proslavery officials in Lecompton. Kagi was arrested again (quickly made bail) and nearly killed by a mob while there "to report the proceedings" of the territorial legislature, which opened on January 12. (This was the first legislature to meet in Lecompton.)

Keywords: Free state perspective; Kagi, John Henry; Kansas Territory. Legislature - Lecompton; Lecompton, Kansas Territory; Proslavery activities; Stevens, Aaron Dwight (see also Whipple, Charles); Stringfellow, John H.; Territorial government; Topeka Tribune


Letter, S. L. Adair to Rev. Joseph Gordon (copy)
Authors: Adair, Samuel Lyle
Date: February 19, 1857
Writing from Osawatomie, Adair thanked Rev. Gordon for $104 raised in Yellow Springs, Ohio, that was sent to James Garrison for "the benefit of sufferers in the cause of freedom in the Osawatomie vicinity." He mentioned the difficulties of distributing aid to everyone's satisfaction and mentioned the Kansas Central Committee. He also wrote of his concerns about how slavery and its demise will impact the nation using phrases such as "conflict of arms" and "fearful doom."

Keywords: Adair, Samuel Lyle; Free state perspective; Garrison, James; Gordon, James; Kansas Central Committee; Lykins County, Kansas Territory (see also Miami County, Kansas); Miami County, Kansas (see also Lykins County, Kansas Territory); Ohio; Osawatomie, Kansas Territory; Relief; Yellow Springs, Ohio


Letter, J. Henry Muzzy to Dear Sir [Eli Thayer]
Authors: Muzzy, J. Henry
Date: March 3, 1857
J. Henry Muzzy wrote from Lawrence, Kansas Territory to Eli Thayer in Worcester, Massachusetts. Muzzy informed Thayer that free state supporters in Kansas were not, as Thayer had predicted, discouraged by James Buchanan's election as president in November 1856. He observed that the territory had been quiet during the winter of 1856-1857, but warned that the "ruffians" likely would engage in efforts during the spring of 1857 to discourage eastern emigration to Kansas. Muzzy also commented on the dilemma that free staters faced in deciding whether to pay the taxes levied by the proslavery "bogus legislature." He and his fellow free state supporters were not inclined to pay taxes imposed by a "foreign power," but they also realized that if Governor Geary called in U.S. troops to enforce the law they would have no choice but to pay. Muzzy concluded by stating that he was thankful for the end of the "reign of Frank Pierce," contending that "any change at Washington can hardly be for the worse."

Keywords: Bogus legislature; Buchanan, James, 1791-1868; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Free state perspective; Geary, John White, 1819-1873; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Muzzy, J. Henry; Pierce, Franklin, 1804-1869; Relief; Taxation; Thayer, Eli, 1819-1899


Letter, Charles Mayo to G.W. Collamore, Esq.
Authors: Mayo, Charles
Date: June 11 1857
Charles Mayo, writing from Olathe, Kansas Territory, described to George Collamore the budding township and his experiences there. Mayo had invested shares in the town and hoped it would become the county seat. He encouraged Collamore to influence free state men to go to Olathe and settle there, in order to out populate the proslavery majority already established.

Keywords: Free state perspective; Johnson County, Kansas Territory; Mayo, Charles; Olathe, Kansas Territory; Proslavery supporters; Santa Fe road; Shawnee Indians; Town companies; Town development


Letter [transcript], Josiah Miller to Dear Father and Mother
Authors: Miller, Josiah
Date: June 15, 1857
Josiah Miller wrote from Lawrence, Kansas Territory, to his Father and Mother in Chester, South Carolina, before their departure for Kansas Territory. Miller informed them of banking practices and his new business enterprise-- raising stock. He also discussed the value of prairie land versus timbered land. Miller referred to the "bogus" election of the day before, which elected delegates to the Constitutional Convention in Lecompton. Free state men did not vote, and only 2,071 votes were polled. This clearly showing that, had the election been conducted fairly, the free state men would have won the majority.

Keywords: Banks and banking; Bogus laws; Bogus legislature; Business enterprises; Democratic Party (U.S.); Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Free state perspective; Illinois; Land sales; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Miller, Josiah; Republican Party (U.S.: 1854- )


Letter, Charles Mayo to G.W. Collamore
Authors: Mayo, Charles
Date: June 17, 1857
Charles Mayo wrote from Olathe, Kansas Territory, to George Collamore, seeking his advice. Mayo told Collamore that the proslavery citizens of Olathe were urging him to accept the appointment of Magistrate in the county, though Mayo worried how that might affect his standing with the free state party.

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Collamore, George W.; Free state perspective; Johnson County, Kansas Territory; Lawyers; Mayo, Charles; Olathe, Kansas Territory; Proslavery supporters; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894


Letter, Jas. B. Abbott to Gen. J. H. Lane
Authors: Abbott, James Burnett
Date: September 7, 1857
James Abbott, wrote from his travels in Hartford, Connecticut, to James Lane, General of the Kansas free state militia. Abbott was attempting to raise money and supplies for the free state cause by soliciting donations from supporters in the East. However, he reported that "this season of the year is always unfavorable for all benevolent enterprises" and that the "bank and brokers panic" was making matters even more difficult. Abbott longed for "one more big fight in Kansas" even if it should cost him his life or the lives of others as "the object is worth all it will cost."

Keywords: Abbott, James Burnett; Economic conditions; Finance; Free state cause; Free state perspective; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866


Letter, J. [Joseph H. Trego] to My Dear wife [Alice Trego]
Authors: Trego, Joseph Harrington
Date: October 25, 1857
Joseph Trego wrote from his log cabin near Sugar Mound, Kansas Territory, to his wife, Alice, in Illinois. Trego described the beauty of the fall foliage and his plans to build a new home for his family, whom he greatly missed. He worried that he had heard from Alice only once in seven weeks, while he had written every week. Trego showed that he was well connected to current events in the Territory and the county, as he and his friends took several newspapers, including two from Lawrence.

Keywords: Free state perspective; Houses; Hunting; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Newspapers; Trego, Alice; Trego, Joseph Harrington; Weather


Letter, Chas. Robinson (on behalf of the citizens of Lawrence) to Hon. F. P. Stanton
Authors: Robinson, Charles
Date: 1857
This letter by Charles Robinson, free state leader and future Governor of the state of Kansas, appears here in published form. Robinson wrote to F. P. Stanton, the acting governor of Kansas Territory, expressing his opinion that the people of the Territory were not getting their fair say in electing officers or administrating territorial laws. He referred to the upcoming Lecompton Constitutional Convention, which would take place in September 1857, and outlined some procedural guidelines by which the Convention should be run if the free state men were to participate.

Keywords: Free state perspective; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Lecompton Constitutional Convention, September 1857; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Stanton, Frederick Perry, 1814-1894


Letter, Sara [Robinson] to My Dear Sister
Authors: Robinson, Sara T. L. (Sara Tappan Lawrence), 1827-1911
Date: January 5, 1858
Sara Robinson wrote to her sister from Lawrence, describing her home and lifestyle. Robinson named many friends and guests who had visited and/or boarded at her home. She made reference to the election occurring the day before, which would determine whether or not the Lecompton Constitution was ratified, and reiterated her support for the Free State cause.

Keywords: Daily life; Domestics; Election, Lecompton Constitution ratification, January 1858; Free state perspective; Quindaro, Kansas Territory; Topeka Legislature (see Free state legislature); 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, [Samuel] Tappan to Gen. T. W. Higginson
Authors: Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913
Date: March 15, 1858
In this letter, written from Lawrence, Kansas Territory, Samuel Tappan informed Thomas W. Higginson of the state of affairs in Kansas. He began the letter by mentioning the constitutional convention that would soon meet at Minneola, and the hope that the free state side will be triumphant. Tappan also mentioned the recent election for mayor of Lawrence, stating that Carmi Babcock won over James Blood. The last page, tacked on as if it were a separate note, gave a brief summary of where influential leaders were currently located, so Higginson would know of their whereabouts.

Keywords: Babcock, Carmi William; Blood, James; Branscomb, Charles H.; Constitutional conventions; Conway, Martin Franklin; Free state perspective; Higginson, Thomas Wentworth, 1823-1911; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Leavenworth Constitutional Convention, March-April 1858; Lecompton Constitution; Minneola, Kansas Territory; Plumb, Preston B., 1837-1891; Roberts, William Young; Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913


Letter, S.T. Learnard to Dear Son [O. E. Learnard]
Authors: Learnard, S. T.
Date: April 3, 1858
S.T. Learnard, a farmer and occasional state legislator from Bakersfield, Vermont, wrote from Granville, Ohio, to his son, Oscar E. Learnard, in Kansas Territory. S.T. Learnard requested that his son meet him upon his arrival in Lawrence. He also referred to the defeat of the Lecompton Constitution in the U. S. House of Representatives, a move which he dubbed "a victory for freedom."

Keywords: Free state perspective; Learnard, Oscar E., 1832-1911; Learnard, S. T.; Lecompton Constitution; Travel; United States. Congress. House


Address of the Kanzas Constitutional Convention to the American Public
Authors: Walden, John Morgan
Date: April 3, 1858
Leavenworth Constitution (?) address to accompany the constitution as it was distributed to the public, 15,000 copies in English and 2000 in German. It was very biased against the Lecompton Constitution.

Keywords: Adams, Henry J.; Antislavery; Conway, Martin Franklin; Ewing, Thomas, 1829-1896; Free state perspective; Goodnow, Isaac T., 1814-1894; Leavenworth Constitution; Lecompton Constitution; Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913; Thacher, Timothy D., 1831-1894; Walden, John Morgan


Letter, Tho. Ewing Jr to My dear Sir [R. B. Mitchell]
Authors: Ewing, Jr., Thomas , 1829-1896
Date: December 15, 1858
In this letter to Robert B. Mitchell of Paris in Linn County, Ewing commented on the summer and fall "disturbances in Linn & Bourbon" counties, and he predicted that many of the "scoundrels" responsible--presumably men on both sides of the slavery issue--would one day end up in the as yet to be established "penitentiary." Ewing wrote Mitchell, at that time a member of the territorial legislature, about the organization of the Democratic Party in Leavenworth and reported on several "of our free state friends" who had joined with the "Democracy." (Subsequently, despite Ewing's plea that moderates not take this action but "just bide their time," Mitchell joined the Democrats in 1859 and accepted their nomination for congressman.)

Keywords: Bourbon County, Kansas Territory; Democratic Party (U.S.); Ewing, Thomas, 1829-1896; Free State Party; Free state perspective; Fuller, Perry; Goodin, Joel Kishler; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Mitchell, Robert Byington; Paris, Kansas Territory; Railroads; Smith, Samuel C.


Letter, Frank Walker to M. B. Walker
Authors: Walker, Frank
Date: March 4, 1859
Frank Walker of Mound City, Kansas Territory, wrote to Mr. B. Walker (from the context, presumably a brother) recounting recent skirmishes between the free state men led by James Montgomery and the pro-slavery "scamps" in Bourbon and Linn counties. Walker dubbed Montgomery one of "the likedest man in Kanzas," though at the time, in pro-slavery Linn County, he was considered an outlaw. Walker's letter included references to an incident occurring on Dec 16, 1858 in Fort Scott, in which Montgomery and his men attacked a pro-slavery prison to save a fellow free state man. Walker concluded by encouraging his family to obtain a land warrant in Kansas Territory.

Keywords: Bourbon County, Kansas Territory; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Free state perspective; Guns; Land acquisition; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Montgomery, James, 1814-1871; Mound City, Kansas Territory; Walker, Frank; Walker, M.B.; Weapons (see also Guns); Wounds and injuries


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, Sam F. Tappan to Dear Friend [Thomas W. Higginson]
Authors: Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913
Date: April 17, 1859
In this letter, Samuel Tappan continued to keep Thomas Higginson of Worcester, Massachusetts apprised of the current situation in Kansas Territory. He mentioned such topics as the Pike's Peak gold rush and the affairs of the New England Emigrant Aid Company, stating his belief that Robinson and Pomeroy were innocent of any charges of speculation. He praised John Brown's work to free slaves and the work of the Doy family in that same endeavor. However, he did not agree with Charles Robinson, who too readily looked to the interests of the Republican Party instead of supporting John Brown's work in the territory. Tappan appreciated the Atlantic Monthly magazine and Higginson's contributions to it.

Keywords: African Americans; Brown, John, 1800-1859; Doy, John; Free state perspective; Fugitive slaves; Higginson, Thomas Wentworth, 1823-1911; Kansas City, Kansas Territory; Land speculation; Pikes Peak gold rush; Pomeroy, S. C. (Samuel Clarke), 1816-1891; Republican Party (U.S.: 1854- ); Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Slaves; Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913


Letter, Frank Walker to Dear Brother
Authors: Walker, Frank
Date: May 23, 1859
This is part of a series of letters from Frank Walker written in Mound City, Linn County, Kansas Territory. The letter implied that Walker was part of a free state militia group and indicated that the free state men never stole things. He wrote that the proslavery men took their horses. He mentioned a meeting of the Republican Party and that Horace Greeley gave a speech.

Keywords: Free state militia; Free state perspective; Greeley, Horace, 1811-1872; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Mound City, Kansas Territory; Proslavery activities; Republican Party (U.S.: 1854- ); Walker, Frank


Letter, J.M. [James Montgomery] to George L. Stearns
Authors: Montgomery, James , 1814-1871
Date: December 12, 1860
Montgomery wrote again from Mound City to update Stearns on the activities of "old Harney" (General William S. Harney) and the futile federal government efforts at "enforcing the Fugitive Slave law on us here; it can't be done." Montgomery insisted that despite the government's effort to portray "'Montgomery and his band'" as not of the people, popular support for his activities had just been unanimously endorsed at a mass meeting in Mound City.

Keywords: Free state perspective; Fugitive Slave Law; Fugitive slaves; Harney, William S.; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Montgomery, James, 1814-1871; Mound City, Kansas Territory; United States. Army; Webb, Thomas H. (Thomas Hopkins), 1801-1866


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

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