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Authors: Gilbert, Robert L.
Date: December 5, 1849
Robert Gilbert, a young Englishman studying at Yoxford Academy in England anticipating the Christmas holiday, wrote to his parents summarizing his studies of the past half-year. He was born in Sibton, Suffolk County, England. After graduating from Yoxford, he became a gardener in the Crystal Palace Gardens in London. Gilbert emigrated to the U.S. in 1855 and began farming nine miles north of Lawrence the same year.
Keywords: Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Emigration and immigration; England; Farmers; Gilbert, Robert L.; Immigrants; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Settlement
Letter, Robert A. Tovey to My Dear Wife [Eliza (Matthew) Tovey]
Authors: Tovey, Robert Atkins
Date: December 17, 1854
Robert Atkins Tovey, Sr, having arrived in "Kanzas" Territory, wrote to his wife, Eliza (Matthew) Tovey, at their home in Albany, New York. Tovey described his working and living conditions, calling his Native American boss "most pleasant" and his living arrangements "comfortable," though infested with rats. Tovey, also a preacher, mentioned that the Methodist Church, the single place of worship in town, was willing to share their space with other denominations.
Keywords: Churches; Daily life; Emigration and immigration; Immigrants; Labor; Native Americans; Religion; Tovey, Robert Atkins
Passengers' Contract Ticket
Authors: Phipps, Shaw, and Lowther
Date: August 29, 1855
Robert L. Gilbert, a 21-year-old Englishman, purchased a ticket to travel from London, England, to New York, departing on Sept. 6, 1855. The ticket lists travel requirements such as luggage size, provisions provided, and an appointment time for a medical examination, which was required before departure. Gilbert would eventually dock in New York, renounce his allegiance to England, and travel to Kansas Territory to a farm nine miles north of Lawrence.
Keywords: Emigration and immigration; England; Gilbert, Robert L.; Immigrants; Phipps, Shaw & Lowther; Transportation; Travel
Certificate, Declaration of Intention
Authors: Court of Monroe County, New York State
Date: October 23, 1855
Robert L. Gilbert, a 21-year-old Englishman, had just finished his journey to the United States when he renounced his allegiance to the Queen of England by signing this Declaration of Intention. Gilbert would continue west into Kansas Territory, where he eventually settled nine miles north of Lawrence in late 1855.
Keywords: Emigration and immigration; England; Farmers; Gilbert, Robert L.; Immigrants; Monroe County, New York State; Settlement
Certificate, Head Quarters Kansas Volunteers
Authors: Kansas Volunteers
Date: December 12, 1855
This certificate, signed by Charles Robinson and James Lane, was issued by the Head Quarters of the Kansas Volunteers, a Free state militia group led by Robinson. It documented Robert Gilbert's service "in defending the City of Lawrence. . .from demolition by foreign invaders" during the Wakarusa War. Gilbert had arrived in Kansas Territory only weeks before, having traveled from his native England.
Keywords: Battles; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Free state activities; Free state militia; Free state regiment; Gilbert, Robert L.; Hunt, Morris; Immigrants; Kansas Volunteers; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Wakarusa War, November-December 1855; Wilder, Solomon
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