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42 results for Topeka Constitution:
Concurrent Resolutions, Topeka Legislature, House and Senate [1858]
Authors: Free State Legislature
Date: no date
These handwritten copies of two, slightly different, concurrent resolutions were passed by the House and the Senate of the Topeka Free-State Legislature, probably in 1858. They established the legitimacy of the state government under the Topeka Constitution, and "respectfully urge[d] the Territorial Legislature, now in session, at Lawrence, to take immediate steps for removing the present forms of a territorial government, so that the legitimate government of the people may become the only government in Kansas."

Keywords: Free state government; Free state legislature; Shawnee County, Kansas Territory; Topeka Constitution; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement); Topeka, Kansas Territory


Journal. Miscellaneous Records of the Free State Executive Committee
Authors: Goodin, Joel Kishler
Date: 1855-1856
This journal, compiled by Joel K. Goodin, secretary of the Executive Committee of the Topeka free-state movement, began with a statement explaining the reason the Topeka Movement formed and the call for a Mass Meeting at Big Springs, August 15, 1855. It included notes of numerous meetings, proclamations, etc. These committee records were published in their entirety in the Kansas Historical Collections Vol. 13:125-158.

Keywords: Free State Party; Free state movement (see also Topeka Movement); Goodin, Joel Kishler; Journals; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Shawnee County, Kansas Territory; Topeka Constitution; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement); Topeka, Kansas Territory


Election, location of capitol of Kansas, Topeka Convention, 1855
Authors: No authors specified.
Date: October 23, 1855
The Free-State government held a constitutional convention in Topeka from October 23 through November 11, 1855, and one of its actions was to vote on the capital of Kansas. According to these tally sheets, Topeka defeated Lawrence on the second ballot, 20 to 16. Numerous other towns received votes from the convention delegates on the first ballot.

Keywords: Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Free State Party; Free state government; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Shawnee County, Kansas Territory; Topeka Constitution; Topeka Constitutional Convention, October 1855; Topeka, Kansas Territory


Journal, Topeka Constitutional Convention
Authors: Smith, Samuel C.
Date: October 24, 1855
According to a copy of the 1902 cover letter written by Samuel C. Smith of Lawrence, secretary/chief clerk for the convention, this incomplete "copy of the Journal of the Topeka Constitutional Convention" was made at Lawrence in November 1855. It began with the opening of the second day's session, October 24, 1855, and continued daily, except for Sunday, October 28 and November 4, through Saturday, November 10 (the convention officially adjourned, according to Wilder, "Annals," November 11 during the very early hours of that Sunday morning). The first few pages of the journal detailed organizational matters, including the election of James H. Lane as president of the convention and the creation of standing committees.

Keywords: Constitutions; Delahay, Mark W.; Free State Party; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Shawnee County, Kansas Territory; Smith, Samuel C.; Topeka Constitution; Topeka Constitutional Convention, October 1855; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement); Topeka, Kansas Territory


Journal, Topeka Constitutional Convention, October 26, 1855
Authors: Smith, Samuel C.
Date: October 26, 1855
During the afternoon session on Friday, October 26, 1855, the convention returned to the issue raised by Delahay that morning, among other more mundane matters.

Keywords: Constitutions; Delahay, Mark W.; Free State Party; Holliday, Cyrus Kurtz, 1826-1900; Kansas Freeman; Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Shawnee County, Kansas Territory; Smith, Samuel C.; Topeka Constitution; Topeka Constitutional Convention, October 1855; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement); Topeka, Kansas Territory


Journal, Topeka Constitutional Convention, October 26, 1855
Authors: Smith, Samuel C.
Date: October 26, 1855
On Friday, October 26, 1855, the convention conducted some routine business but also entertained a motion by Mark W. Delahay of Leavenworth: "Resolved--That this Convention, approve the principles of non intervention in the local affairs of Kansas, as enunciated by the 'Nebraska, Kansas Act,' and that this Convention recommend to the people of Kansas a strict observance of the principles laid down in said act." In other words, he opposed the creation of a provisional government to rival the federally recognized territorial government--see Delahay's speech on this subject, as reported in "Kansas Freeman," November 14, 1855. The resolution was tabled.

Keywords: Constitutions; Delahay, Mark W.; Free State Party; Free state movement (see also Topeka Movement); Holliday, Cyrus Kurtz, 1826-1900; Kansas Nebraska Act; Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Shawnee County, Kansas Territory; Smith, Samuel C.; Topeka Constitution; Topeka Constitutional Convention, October 1855; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement); Topeka, Kansas Territory


Journal, Topeka Constitutional Convention, October 30, 1855
Authors: Smith, Samuel C.
Date: October 30, 1855
During this session of the constitutional convention, delegates dealt briefly with the question of "an immediate organization of a State Government," a highly controversial issue, and considered a report on the militia. Lively debate on the latter issue seems to have followed, although not much detail is given here, with Charles Robinson offering an amendment "striking out the word white--" This presumably would have had the effect of making African Americans and Indians eligible for service, but the amendment failed seven to twenty-four.

Keywords: African Americans; Constitutions; Delahay, Mark W.; Free State Party; Holliday, Cyrus Kurtz, 1826-1900; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Militia; Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Shawnee County, Kansas Territory; Smith, Samuel C.; Suffrage; Topeka Constitution; Topeka Constitutional Convention, October 1855; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement); Topeka, Kansas Territory; Voting


Journal, Topeka Constitutional Convention
Authors: Smith, Samuel C.
Date: October 31, 1855
During the afternoon session of Wednesday, October 31, 1855, Jim Lane presented a "Resolution which was ordered to be entered upon the Journal of the convention--said Resolution being the instructions given by the people of the 2nd Representative District" at a Lawrence meeting of October 7. The "instructions" and Lane's resolution provided that "the question of excluding Free Negroes from the Territory" be submitted to a vote of the people on the day they voted on the constitution itself.

Keywords: African Americans; Constitutions; Delahay, Mark W.; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Exclusion, African Americans; Free State Party; Holliday, Cyrus Kurtz, 1826-1900; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Shawnee County, Kansas Territory; Smith, Samuel C.; Topeka Constitution; Topeka Constitutional Convention, October 1855; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement); Topeka, Kansas Territory


Journal, Topeka Constitutional Convention, Afternoon Session
Authors: Smith, Samuel C.
Date: November 9, 1855
During the course of the proceedings recorded for the afternoon of November 9, 1855, discussion turned to the effort by Jim Lane to first include a provision for the "removal" of all blacks and then all "slaves" from Kansas by July 4, 1860. Charles Robinson supported an amendment which changed the effective date to July 4, 1857. All other provisions were to take effect immediately upon the adoption of the constitution.

Keywords: African Americans; Constitutions; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Exclusion, African Americans; Free State Party; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Shawnee County, Kansas Territory; Slavery; Smith, Samuel C.; Topeka Constitution; Topeka Constitutional Convention, October 1855; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement); Topeka, Kansas Territory


Topeka Constitution (as printed in D.W. Wilder's Annals of Kansas (1868)).
Authors: Topeka Constitutional Convention
Date: November 11, 1855
The Topeka Constitution, the first one written for Kansas Territory, was drafted by free state supporters in reaction to contested elections that gave the proslavery party initial control of Kansas' territorial government. Free-staters gathered in convention at Lawrence on August 14 and Big Spring on September 5, 1855 and delegates assembled at Topeka on October 23, 1855, to draft a constitution. The document was approved on December 15 by a vote of 1,731 to 46. The Topeka Constitution prohibited slavery and limited suffrage to white males and "every civilized male Indian who has adopted the habits of the white man." Congress rejected this constitution and the accompanying request for Kansas to be admitted to the Union. This version of the document was published December 26, 1855 in the Kickapoo Pioneer newspaper.

Keywords: Constitutions; Free state movement (see also Topeka Movement); Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Slavery; Smith, Samuel C.; Suffrage; Topeka Constitution; Topeka Constitutional Convention, October 1855; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement); Topeka, Kansas Territory


Proclamation, General Constitution and Banking Law
Authors: Goodin, Joel Kishler; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866
Date: c. November 24, 1855
This article, published in the Kansas Freeman newspaper, called for an election over the constitution framed by the Topeka Convention in October 1855. "Qualified voters of said Territory will meet at the several precincts hereinafter mentioned, on the 15th day of December, A. D., 1855." In that same election, the voters would be called upon to consider a general banking law. The article also outlined the election precincts and miscellaneous details.

Keywords: Banks and banking; Elections; Goodin, Joel Kishler; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Laws; Topeka Constitution; Topeka Constitutional Convention, October 1855


Letter, [Josiah Miller] to Dear Father and Mother
Authors: Miller, Josiah
Date: Nov 11 1855
Josiah Miller, having recently bought out his business partner, Robert G. Elliott, from their jointly owned newspaper, the Kansas Free State, wrote to his parents in South Carolina about his recent business ventures. He stated that "papers don't pay" and expressed his interest in land claims and real estate, which would earn him more money. Miller also told his parents that he was continuing to search for a farm in Wyandotte County for them to settle on when they arrive in Kansas Territory. He hoped that Congress would approve the constitution that the Free State men had recently submitted.

Keywords: Banks and banking; Constitutions; Free state legislature; Kansas Free State (newspaper); Land acquisition; Land claim disputes; Miller, Josiah; Sawmills; Squatters; Topeka Constitution; Town development


Annals of Kansas, December 1855
Authors: Wilder, Daniel Webster, 1832-1911
Date: December 1855
Includes the text of the Topeka Constitution.

Keywords: Annals of Kansas; Topeka Constitution


Certificate of appointment of G.W. Brown as agent for the Kansas Executive Committee
Authors: Free State Executive Committee
Date: December 10, 1855
Certificate issued by the Free State Executive Committee appointing George Washington Brown, editor of the Herald of Freedom newspaper, as its agent to pursue immediate admission of Kansas as a state under the provisions of the Topeka Constitution. James H. Lane signed the certificate as chairman of the Executive Committee.

Keywords: Brown, George W. (George Washington), 1820-1915; Certificates; Free state cause; Free state government; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Topeka Constitution


Letter, John Brown to Orson Day Esqr.
Authors: Brown, John , 1800-1859
Date: December 14, 1855
In mid-December 1855, John Brown wrote to Orson Day (a brother in law) of White Hall, New York, from Browns Station, Kansas Territory, regarding the "Kansas War" (Wakarusa War) from which he had "just returned." The territory was, according to Brown, "now entirely in the power of the Free State men," and he continued to "believe the Missourians will give up all further hope of making Kansas a Slave State."

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Browns Station, Kansas Territory; Firearms; Free state cause; Free state constitutions; Missourians; Proslavery prospects; Slaves in Kansas Territory; Topeka Constitution; Wakarusa War, November-December 1855


The Vote on the Constitution
Authors: No authors specified.
Date: c. December 15, 1855
This article, printed in the Kansas Freeman newspaper, gave a preliminary count of the votes cast in the election to ratify the Topeka Constitution. The other two issues on the ballot were whether or not slaves should be excluded from the territory, and whether or not the territory should have a general banking law. The returns from Lawrence, Topeka, and Tecumseh are all listed, but not all the returns had been tallied.

Keywords: African Americans; Banks and banking; Constitutions; Elections; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Slaves; Tecumseh, Kansas Territory; Topeka Constitution; Topeka, Kansas


Daily diary, Isaac Goodnow
Authors: Goodnow, Isaac T., 1814-1894
Date: July 1855 - January 1856
Isaac Goodnow, a free state supporter and founder of Bluemont College in Manhattan, Kansas Territory, recorded news of political events and military skirmishes from July 1855-January 1856. Goodnow's diary makes mention of the details of his daily life, such as home maintenance, crop harvests, prairie fires, and extended illness.

Keywords: Conway, Martin Franklin; Daily life; Denison, Joseph; Elections; Free state activities; Free state support; Goodnow, Isaac T., 1814-1894; Illness; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Militia; Pomeroy, S. C. (Samuel Clarke), 1816-1891; Reeder, Andrew H. (Andrew Horatio), 1807-1864; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Schuyler, Philip Church; Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913; Topeka Constitution; Wakarusa War, November-December 1855


Indictment of H. Miles Moore
Authors: Grover, C. H.
Date: March 1856
Charles H. Grover, the district attorney for the First District in Kansas Territory, signed an indictment of Henry Miles Moore of Leavenworth, K. T. for unlawfully exercising the powers of Attorney General. Moore was elected Attorney General of the Free State government on January 15, 1856, under the provisions of the Topeka Constitution.

Keywords: Attorneys general; Courts; Free State Party; Free state government; Free state movement (see also Topeka Movement); Grover, Charles H.; Moore, H. Miles (Henry Miles), b. 1826; Topeka Constitution; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement); United States. District Court (Kansas Territory)


Journal, House of Representatives, Topeka (1856)
Authors: Goodin, Joel Kishler
Date: 1856-1857
This Journal of the House of Representatives of the State of Kansas was, apparently, the original record of the Free State Provisional Government of Kansas, which was organized at the Big Springs Convention September 5, 1855. Joel K. Goodin was chief clerk of the House and felt the journal was "a flat contradiction of the pro-slavery inuendo, that we were all abolitionists from Boston, Massachusetts, and hired to come to Kansas by the Emigrant Aid Society." The first two pages of the original bound journal have been scanned. The original is oversized with the pages measuring 9.5 inches wide and 14 inches high. The journal, as published in its entirety in the Kansas Historical Collections volume 13 pages 166-249, follows the two pages from the original.

Keywords: Free State Party; Free state government; Free state legislature; Goodin, Joel Kishler; Holliday, Cyrus Kurtz, 1826-1900; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Prohibition; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Shawnee County, Kansas Territory; Sumner, Edwin Vose, 1835-1912; Topeka Constitution; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement); Topeka, Kansas Territory; United States. Congress; United States. Congress. House


Senate Miscellaneous Documents, 34th Congress, 1st and 2nd sessions Document No. 32, Three Memorials of the Citizens of . . .Leavenworth County. . .Praying the immediate admission of Kansas Territory into the Union as a State
Authors: No authors specified.
Date: March 24, 1856
These "memorials" presented by various citizens or Leavenworth County, Kansas Territory, to the United States Congress and referred by them to the Committee on Territories, were written in a petition style, with the names of supporters signed at their conclusion, and requested the immediate admission of Kansas Territory to the Union under the Constitution framed by the Topeka Legislature. Following the three memorials is a copy of the proposed Constitution, as approved by James Lane and Joel Goodin, respectively President and Secretary of the Topeka Constitutional Convention.

Keywords: Admission, Kansas (see also Statehood); Election fraud; Foster, Charles A.; Free state activities; Goodin, Joel Kishler; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Leavenworth County, Kansas Territory; Smith, Samuel C.; Topeka Constitution; United States. Congress. Senate


Letter, Charles Sumner to My Dear _______
Authors: Sumner, Charles , 1811-1874
Date: March 24, 1856
Addressed from the "Senate Chamber," Washington, D.C., this brief note appeared to be a letter of introduction for Mark W. Delahay from Charles Sumner, the famed Republican, abolitionist senator from Massachusetts. Interestingly, since the federal government never recognized the elections held under the Topeka Constitution, the senator introduced "Col. Delahay" as a "member of Congress elect from the state of Kansas."

Keywords: Delahay, Mark W.; Massachusetts; Republican Party (U.S.: 1854- ); Sumner, Charles, 1811-1874; Topeka Constitution; United States. Congress. Senate; Washington, D.C.


Circular, Members of the Kansas Settlers Society
Authors: Walsh, Benjamin J.
Date: June 2, 1856
This circular was written by Benjamin J. Walsh to members of the Kansas Settler's Society concerning emigration to Kansas and efforts to raise needed funds to complete the trip to Kansas. A meeting of the emigrant aid society was organized in Chicago. The circular also discussed attempts to form similar groups in other states. Walsh went to Cleveland to try to organize an emigrant aid society in that location.

Keywords: Abolitionists; Antislavery; Chicago, Illinois; Circulars; Clark, W. Penn; Emigrant aid companies - Free state; Emigration and immigration; Free state cause; Iowa City, Iowa; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Money; Topeka Constitution; Walsh, Benjamin J.


Letter, Geo. W. Smith, et al to the Friends of Law and Order convened at Topeka
Authors: Brown, Jr., John ; Deitzler, George W.; Jenkins, Gaius ; Robinson, Charles ; Smith, George W.; Williams, Henry H.
Date: July 1, 1856
From a "camp near Lecompton," George W. Smith and the other Free State captives, including Charles Robinson and John Brown, Jr., wrote to state their views on issues facing the Topeka legislature as it convened. First, Smith and company argued that the freestaters had a "right to meet as a Legislature, complete the State organization and pass all laws necessary to the successful administration of Justice," but the assembly should not resist "Federal officer in the service of the legal process" unless they threaten the state organization. Smith, et al, believe success of the cause depended on "a right position and, second upon calm, and unflinching firmness."

Keywords: Blood, James; Brown, John, Jr.; Deitzler, George W.; Federal troops; Free state cause; Free state government; Jenkins, Gaius; Lecompton, Kansas Territory; Pierce, Franklin, 1804-1869; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Smith, George W.; Topeka Constitution; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement); Topeka, Kansas Territory; United States Government; Williams, Henry H.


Letter, Sophy [Sophie D. S. Goddard] to Sara [T. D. Robinson]
Authors: Goddard, Sophie D. S.
Date: July 20, [1856]
This letter to Sara Robinson from her sister Sophie Goddard was sent in care of Miss Emily I. Hunt, since rumor had it the letters to the Robinson's and other prisoners were being confiscated. Goddard comments in general terms on a number of Kansas issues and developments, but her letter is one mostly to express concern for the plight of her sister.

Keywords: Brooks, Preston Smith; Free state; Goddard, Sophie D.S.; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Robinson, Sara T. L. (Sara Tappan Lawrence), 1827-1911; Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913; Topeka Constitution


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, Augustus Wattles to Jas. Smith Esq.
Authors: Wattles, Augustus
Date: June 18, 1857
From Lawrence on June 18, 1857, Augustus Wattles wrote Jas. Smith (Is this a Brown alias?) regarding affairs in Kansas Territory, specifically referring to several of the Free State Party's leaders: "Holmes' is at Emporia plowing. Conway's here talking politics. Phillips is here trying to urge the free State men to galvanize the Topeka Constitution into life. . . ." and Robinson had "dispirited the Free State party" by his absence from the legislature last winter, making it "difficult to make them rally again under him." Although one hears "much against Brown" he is "as good as ever."

Keywords: Brown, John, 1800-1859; Conway, Martin Franklin; Free state legislature; Free state movement (see also Topeka Movement); Herald of Freedom; Holmes, James H.; Phillips, William A. (William Addison), 1824-1893; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Smith, James; Topeka Constitution; Wattles, Augustus


Letter, T. J. Marsh to George L. Stearns
Authors: Marsh, Thomas J.
Date: July 18, 1857
Thomas J. Marsh, who arrived in the Kansas Territory on July 11, 1857, made Lawrence his base of operation. He had made the journey as an agent for the Massachusetts State Kansas Committee. His objective was to observe and financially support free state efforts to capture the legislature at the polls in early October (this included conducting a census). During his first week in Kansas Territory, Marsh attended the "entirely harmonious" Free State Party convention in Topeka and reported on initial efforts to organize the campaign. He also seemed very concerned about "petty, personal feuds" among the leadership in the territory. Marsh had personally discussed this issue with the men involved and believed the "discordant elements have been harmonized." Upon his return to Lawrence, Marsh found "U. S. Dragoons parading the streets" and Governor Walker threatening to make numerous arrests because of the unauthorized election of city officials the previous Monday.

Keywords: Blood, James; Census; Conway, Martin Franklin; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Dragoons; Election, Territorial Legislature, October 1857; Factionalism; Free State Party; Free state support; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Marsh, Thomas J.; Massachusetts State Kansas Committee; Stearns, Geo. L. (George Luther), 1809-1867; Topeka Constitution; Travel; United States. Army; Walker, Robert J. (Robert John), 1801-1869; Weather; Webb, Thomas H. (Thomas Hopkins), 1801-1866


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


Statement of votes polled and tally sheet for election of officers under the Topeka Constitution, Lawrence precinct
Authors: Blackman, William I. R.; Mallory, A. H.; Robinson, Alfred
Date: August 3, 1857
An official statement and accompanying tally sheet detaling the results of the "State Election" held under the authority of the Topeka Constitution. This document was from the Lawrence precinct and was certified by election judges W. I. R. Blackman, A. H. Mallory, and Alfred Robinson. Election participants were primarily free state supporters who cast votes for state officials, representatives to the U.S. Congress, and U.S. senators; they also indicated whether they were for or against the Topeka Constitution.

Keywords: Blackman, William I. R.; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Election, Topeka Constitution, August 1857; Elections; Free state constitutions; Free state movement (see also Topeka Movement); Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Mallory, Anson H.; Robinson, Alfred; Topeka Constitution


Election Results, Geary City, Doniphan County
Authors: Porter, R. J.
Date: August 3, 1857
One example of several official statements of the results of the "State Election," held under the authority of the Topeka Constitution. This one--Geary City, Doniphan County-- is certified by election judges R. J. Porter, John M. Curtis, and Alexander Paterson, and, among the offices tallied, recorded 55 votes for the "State Constitution."

Keywords: Curtis, John M.; Doniphan County, Kansas Territory; Election, Topeka Constitution, August 1857; Elections; Free state; Geary City, Kansas Territory; Geary County, Kansas Territory; Paterson, Alexander; Porter, R. J.; Topeka Constitution


Poll List, Leavenworth, Topeka Constitution
Authors: Anthony, Scott A.
Date: August 3, 1857
On August 3, 1857, the free-state legislature gave K. T. voters another chance to vote the Topeka Constitution (first approved, December 1855) when they went to the polls to elect new legislators. Few, if any, proslave voters participated and the territory-wide tally was 7,257 for the constitution, 34 against. The polling list for Leavenworth contains the names of 721 voters, "seven hundred and six (706) being in favor of said Constitution and two (2) against."

Keywords: Constitutions; Election, Topeka Constitution, August 1857; Elections; Free state; Leavenworth County, Kansas Territory; Leavenworth, Kansas Territory; Topeka Constitution


Letter, E. [Ephraim] Nute to [Edward Everett] Hale
Authors: Nute, Ephraim
Date: August 3, 1857
Rev. Ephraim Nute, minister of the Lawrence Unitarian Church, wrote from Lawrence, Kansas Territory to Edward Everett Hale, a member of the New England Emigrant Aid Company's Executive Committee. Nute described efforts to establish a high school in Lawrence as well as a university in Kansas Territory. He also advised Hale to pay close attention to the activities of Francis Serenbetz, a German Congregational minister who was the leader of a group of German immigrants who settled in Humboldt, Kansas Territory. In Nute's opinion, Serenbetz was an "unmitigated humbug and nuisance" who came to Kansas for self-interested reasons. Nute urged Hale to stop sending settlers to Kansas who lacked financial resources or a willingness to work to support themselves.

Keywords: Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Education; Election, Topeka Constitution, August 1857; Elections; Emigrant aid companies; Germans; Hale, Edward Everett, 1822-1909; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; New England Emigrant Aid Company; Nute, Ephraim; Schools; Serenbetz, Francis M.; Topeka Constitution; Universities and colleges


Tally List of Voters, Geary City, Doniphan County
Authors: Porter, R. J.
Date: August 3, 1857
An example of numerous like documents collected here, this "tally list" accompanied the official record of voting in the "state election," August 3, 1857, at Geary City in Doniphan County. The 57 voters on the sheets also had the opportunity to vote on the Topeka Constitution.

Keywords: Doniphan County, Kansas Territory; Election, Topeka Constitution, August 1857; Elections; Geary City, Kansas Territory; Porter, R. J.; Topeka Constitution


Letter, [Tho. Ewing, Jr.] to Dear Father [Hon. T. Ewing]
Authors: Ewing, Jr., Thomas , 1829-1896
Date: August 5, 1857
The first letter in this letter press book mainly concerned with political affairs in the territory was addressed to Ewing, Sr., in Lancaster, Ohio, and dated Leavenworth, Kansas, August 5, 1857. Responding to the father's observations about the situation in Kansas, Ewing, Jr., wrote "I have all along regarded the attempt at an organization of a State Government, while we are a Territory, as the extreme of folly . . ." and some additional observations about the Topeka movement. Ewing "intend[ed] to stand clear of the political arena in Kansas while the leaders of the Democracy are made up of political murderers, and while the free state party is but the football for the Free soilers in the Northern States."

Keywords: Bogus laws; Democratic Party (U.S.); Ewing, Thomas, 1789-1871; Ewing, Thomas, 1829-1896; Free Soil Party; Free State Party; Free soil; Kansas Territory. Legislature; Lancaster, Ohio; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Leavenworth, Kansas Territory; Topeka Constitution; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement); Walker, Robert J. (Robert John), 1801-1869


Letter, T.J. Marsh to George L. Stearns
Authors: Marsh, Thomas J.
Date: August 11, 1857
On August 11, 1857, Marsh reported from Lawrence that the governor was "still here with his Troops, but nobody pays any regard to him, or them." According to D. W. Wilder, Annals of Kansas, however, all but forty troops left on August 3, the day of the election under the Topeka Constitution, which Marsh also mentioned. His primary concern remained the October election, which many feared would not be fairly conducted despite the governor's promises, and the growing talk of another Free State Party boycott of the polls.

Keywords: Cato, Sterling G.; Conway, Martin Franklin; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Election, Territorial Legislature, October 1857; Election, Topeka Constitution, August 1857; Free State Party; Grasshopper Falls Convention; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Marsh, Thomas J.; Redpath, James, 1833-1891; Stearns, Geo. L. (George Luther), 1809-1867; Topeka Constitution; Walker, Robert J. (Robert John), 1801-1869; Whitman, E. B.


Letter, James Peckham to H. Miles Moore
Authors: Peckham, James
Date: December 13, 1857
Peckham, writing from New York City, described Northern opposition to the Lecompton Constitution. He also offered advice to Moore, a Free State advocate from Leavenworth, K. T. that Free State supporters refrain from seeking the admission of Kansas as a state under the Topeka Constitution.

Keywords: Antislavery; Constitutions; Free state; Lecompton Constitution; Moore, H. Miles (Henry Miles), b. 1826; New York, New York; Peckham, James; Topeka Constitution


Jacob Collamer, Washington, D.C. to William Hutchinson
Authors: Collamer, Jacob
Date: December 17, 1857
Collamer, a U.S. senator from Vermont, cautioned Hutchinson against an attempt to establish a Kansas state government under the Topeka Constitution without the consent of Congress.

Keywords: Collamer, Jacob; Hutchinson, William, 1823-1904; Lecompton Constitution; Topeka Constitution


Letter, I. T. Goodnow to Friend Sherman
Authors: Goodnow, Isaac T., 1814-1894
Date: April 1 & 3, 1858
Isaac Goodnow wrote from Leavenworth, Kansas Territory, to a friend, expressing his excitement and support for the Leavenworth Constitution. The status of the Lecompton Constitution was currently being debated in Congress, but Goodnow predicted its "destruction". Goodnow described the events of the Constitutional Convention, which had first convened in Minneola, but had been removed to Leavenworth. He stated that the finished constitution was" the best Constitution in existence", and remarked at James Lane's leading role in its development.

Keywords: Conway, Martin Franklin; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Leavenworth Constitutional Convention, March-April 1858; Leavenworth County, Kansas Territory; Leavenworth, Kansas Territory; Lecompton Constitution; Minneola, Kansas Territory; Prohibition; Topeka Constitution


Minority Report of Senator Douglas of Illinios on the Kansas-Lecompton Constitution
Authors: Douglas, Stephen
Date: February 18, 1858
Senator Stephen Douglas, as a member of the Committee on the Territories, presented this report, which analyzed the Lecompton and Topeka constitutional rivalry, for the consideration of the President. Douglas found that, under the Kansas-Nebraska Act, no government of Kansas, Territorial or otherwise, had the power to draft any constitution without the intital consent of Congress; the territories, though "self-governed" were not sovereign entities, and still were to defer to the direction of the federal government. He argued that even the recognized territorial government had no right to convene a constitutional convention without Congressional approval, and the vote the Lecompton Convention presented to the people offered no opportunity to fully reject the Lecompton Constitution, but only to accept or reject the slavery provision; a person could not vote against making Kansas a slave state unless he was also willing to vote for the Lecompton Constitution. Douglas, however, in his report likened this unauthorized act of Lecompton Constitutional Convention as much "revolution" and "treasonable pertinacity" as those actions of the free state government in Topeka; neither group held legitimate authority to draft or present their constitutions.

Keywords: Douglas, Stephen Arnold, 1813-1861; Free state legislature; Illinois; Kansas Nebraska Act; Lecompton Constitution; Lecompton Constitutional Convention, September 1857; Popular sovereignty; Slavery; Topeka Constitution; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement); Walker, Robert J. (Robert John), 1801-1869


Journal, Leavenworth Constitutional Convention, Afternoon Session
Authors: Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913
Date: March 26, 1858
Kansas's third constitutional convention, convened at Minneola, Franklin County, on March 23, 1858, elected officers (including Samuel F. Tappan, secretary), and then adjourned to reconvene at Leavenworth on March 25. During the afternoon session, March 26, 1858, some interesting debate occurred regarding the viability of the Topeka Constitution, and a minority of the Leavenworth delegates reaffirmed their support for the 1855 instrument. (The Leavenworth Convention nevertheless drafted and adopted a new constitution, and adjourned on April 3, 1858.)

Keywords: Arny, W. F. M. (William Frederick Milton), 1813-1881; Constitutions; Conway, Martin Franklin; Free State Party; Goodin, Joel Kishler; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Leavenworth Constitutional Convention, March-April 1858; Leavenworth County, Kansas Territory; Leavenworth, Kansas Territory; Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913; Topeka Constitution; Winchell, James M., 1823-1877


Photograph of William Riley Griffith
Authors: Leonard, 613 Kansas Ave., Topeka, KS.
Date: 
Griffith was a free state supporter living in Marmaton, Bourbon County. He was a delegate to the Topeka and Wyandotte Constitutional Conventions and was on the Free-State central committee.

Keywords: Cabinet photographs; Constitutional conventions; Free state cause; Griffith, William Riley; Photographs and Illustrations; Topeka Constitution; Wyandotte Constitution


Photograph, Joel Kishler Goodin
Authors: No authors specified.
Date: 
Joel Kishler Goodin was a active participant in the Topeka Movement. He served as clerk of the House of Representatives that met in Topeka and also as secretary of the Executive Committee. He was a delegate to the Leavenworth Constitutional Convention where he promoted the adoption of the Topeka Constitution.

Keywords: Free state legislature; Free state movement (see also Topeka Movement); Goodin, Joel Kishler; Leavenworth Constitution; Photographs and Illustrations; Topeka Constitution; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement)


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

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