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Personalities > James H. Lane
15 Topic Specific Items
Letter, F. D. Kimball to Eli Thayer, Esq.
Author: Kimball, F. D.
Date: May 30, 1856

F. D. Kimball, Attorney General of Ohio, wrote from Columbus, Ohio to Eli Thayer. Kimball reported on James Lane's recent visit to Ohio and described Lane's plans to establish a "line of communication with Kansas via Iowa & Nebraska" for the passage of emigrants and supplies. This line of communication, which allowed free state supporters to bypass Missouri in travelling to Kansas, became known as the Lane Trail.

Keywords: Emigration and immigration; Free state support; Iowa; Kimball, F. D.; Lane Trail; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Nebraska Territory; Ohio; Thayer, Eli, 1819-1899

Letter, [James H.] Lane to Dr. Gaston
Author: Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866
Date: August 16, 1856

Written while Lane was somewhere in Kansas, this letter demonstrates some of the issues on Lane's mind during the conflict in Kansas. One of his main concerns was to make sure that emigrants (and weapons) had a safe route that was free from harassment by border ruffians. This is a copy of Lane's original letter.

Keywords: Blanchard, A. J.; Emigration and immigration; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866

Photograph, James Henry Lane
Author: Rohe, A.
Date: 1857

Photograph of an illustration of James Henry Lane "shouting defiance into the convention's ears and the battery's muzzles at Constitution Hall," Lecompton, Kansas Territory. The illustration is copied from Life of General James H. Lane by John I. Speer.

Keywords: Book illustrations; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lecompton Constitutional Convention, September 1857; Lecompton buildings; Lecompton, Kansas Territory; Photographs and Illustrations

General Order No. 1, Headquarters of Kansas Volunteers, For the Protection of the Ballot Box
Author: Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866
Date: July 18, 1857

This printed document was issued by James H. Lane and indicated that Lane had been authorized by the Free State government in Topeka to organize militia companies in order to protect ballot boxes on election day. It included instructions on how to organize the companies.

Keywords: Conway, Martin Franklin; Kansas Volunteers; Kansas Volunteers for the Protection of the Ballot Box; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Militia; Phillips, William A. (William Addison), 1824-1893; Topeka, Kansas Territory; Voting; Whitman, E. B.

Law Brief, Gaius Jenkins vs. the Robetaille Float, James H. Lane
Author: Unknown
Date: c. 1858

This law brief was prepared on the behalf of Gaius Jenkins by his attorneys, defending his ownership of land that was also claimed by James Lane. This composition stated that Jenkins settled on his claim during October 1854, while Lane settled next to him in 1855, and that Lane sold Jenkins half of his land shortly thereafter for $800. These points, added to various witness testimonies, show that Jenkins was the rightful owner of the land in dispute. Lane killed Jenkins in June 1858 in an argument over this same matter.

Keywords: Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Jenkins, Gaius; Land claim disputes; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lecompton, Kansas Territory; Legal documents; Robitaille, Robert; United States. General Land Office

General Lane's answer to the President's message
Author: Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866
Date: February 13, 1858

Address by General Lane in response to the President's message about Lane and Kansas. Lane rebukes the President's message about him and Kansas. Described the many elections that Kansas had gone through and the intrusion of Missourians into Kansas to rig the elections.

Keywords: Adams, Henry J.; Antislavery; Buchanan, James, 1791-1868; Election fraud; Election, Lecompton Constitution ratification, January 1858; Election, Topeka Constitution, August 1857; Kansas Nebraska Act; Kansas question; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence Republican; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Missourians; Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913; Topeka Legislature (see Free state legislature)

Letter, P. R. Brooks, Lawrence, K. T. to his father
Author: Brooks, P. R.
Date: June 6, 1858

This letter described the land claim dispute between James Lane and Gaius Jenkins, which ended with Lane killing Jenkins. Brooks wrote that Jenkins was well respected, mentioned his widow and children and indicated that his funeral was well attended. He also made passing reference to the "Linn county tragedy."

Keywords: Brooks, Paul R.; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Jenkins, Gaius; Land claim disputes; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Linn County, Kansas Territory; Marais des Cygnes Massacre; Violence; Violent deaths

Letter, Marc Parrott to O. E. Learnard
Author: Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879
Date: June 12, 1858

Marcus Parrott, Representative of Kansas Territory to the U. S. Congress, wrote to Oscar Learnard from Washington, D. C. reacting to the news of Gaius Jenkins' death at the hand of fellow free state man, James Lane. He referred to several friends and colleagues with whom he was eager to reunite upon his return to Lawrence soon after the 25th of the month.

Keywords: Babcock, Carmi William; Free state activities; Jenkins, Gaius; Land claim disputes; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Learnard, Oscar E., 1832-1911; Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894

Letter, John F. King to Tho. Ewing Jr
Author: King, John F.
Date: July 1, 1858

Ewing's correspondent, John F. King of Lawrence, had just given testimony in the Lane-Jenkins hearing that supported Lane's testimony that he shot Gaius Jenkins in self-defense on June 3, 1858, and wrote to provide Ewing (one of Lane's attorneys) with some information regarding "the exact position of the court." In the preliminary hearing, conducted by three justices of the peace (Erastus D. Ladd and two others) beginning on June 15, the decision was that no murder had been committed.

Keywords: Courts; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Ewing, Thomas, 1829-1896; Jenkins, Gaius; Justices of the peace; King, John F.; Ladd, Erastus D.; Land claim disputes; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory

Photograph, Shooting of Gaius Jenkins
Author: Unknown
Date: July 24, 1858

A page from Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper, July 24, 1858, showing the shooting of Gaius Jenkins by James H. Lane, Lawrence, Kansas Territory, June 3, 1858. The page also contains portraits of James H. Lane and Gaius Jenkins.

Keywords: Border disputes and warfare; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Jenkins, Gaius; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Periodical illustrations; Photographs and Illustrations

Law Brief, Lane vs. Jenkins
Author: Almond, W.B.
Date: December 20, 1858

W. B. Almond, attorney for James Lane, composed this law brief at the General Land Office in Lecompton, Kansas Territory. Almond enumerated various points which supported the fact that Lane was the rightful owner of the land over which he and Gaius Jenkins were in dispute, and which ultimately led to Jenkins' death on June 3, 1858. In sum, Almond stated that Lane had purchased the disputed land directly from a man, Chapman, who had sold half to Lane and the other half to the Float.

Keywords: Almond, W.B; Jenkins, Gaius; Land claim disputes; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lykins, William H. R.

Letter, Tho. Ewing Jr to Gentlemen [J. B. Abbott, et al]
Author: Ewing, Jr., Thomas , 1829-1896
Date: October 24, 1859

In response to an October 17 letter from "the Seward Club of Lawrence," Ewing said that he was not prepared "to say whether or no" he intended to support James H. Lane for the U.S. Senate. This was a decision best left to the first legislature, which he hoped would contain "our best men," chosen "without regard to their preferences for United States Senators."

Keywords: Abbott, James Burnett; Ewing, Thomas, 1829-1896; Kansas. Legislature; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Seward Club; United States. Congress. Senate

Pamphlet, James H. Lane vs. Heirs of Gauis Jenkins
Author: No authors specified.
Date: ca. 1860

This document, prepared by Mssrs. Mitchell and Weer, attorneys for James Lane who represented him in his infamous land ownership conflict with Gauis Jenkins, recounts a detailed chronology surrounding the circumstances of each man's ownership of the float. Lane, who ultimately shot and killed fellow freestateman Jenkins as a result of the dispute, maintained that he was the legitimate owner of the float, despite his extended absences from it. Within the details of the conflict, as described in this pamphlet, are included chronologies of Lane's service as a free state representative in Washington and as a General of the free state militia.

Keywords: Free state activities; Free state government; Jenkins, Gaius; Land claim disputes; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawsuits; United States. General Land Office; Violent deaths; Wyandot Float

Lane Lithograph
Author: No authors specified.
Date: 1861

Lithograph of James Henry Lane, probably done shortly after he became a United States Senator.

Keywords: Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Objects; Photographs and Illustrations

Photograph, James H. Lane
Author: No authors specified.
Date: 1861

This is a copy of an original photograph taken of Lane in New York City, 1861. James Lane was a leader of the free state cause, serving as an aid to emigrants. He was also the first United States senator for Kansas. Mrs. John Ingalls had an original of this photograph, and she loaned it to W. E. Connelley who had six copies made. Connelley presented one copy to the Kansas State Historical Society in 1912.

Keywords: Emigration and immigration; Free state activities; Free state supporters; Lane Trail; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Photographs and Illustrations; United States. Senate

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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


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 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


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