PersonalitiesPersonalities > Benjamin F. Stringfellow
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Portrait of Benjamin Stringfellow, attorney and Pro-slavery activist. In 1838, he settled in Missouri where Stringfellow served in the house of representatives and was attorney general for four years. After moving to Weston, MO, he became a member and officer of the Platte County Self-Defensive Association, an aggressive Pro-Slavery organization. He wrote a pamphlet entitled "Negro Slavery No Evil, or the North and the South". In 1858 Stringfellow moved to Atchison, Kansas Territory, where he helped build the town and was an attorney for the Kansas City, St. Joseph & Council Bluffs Railroad.
Keywords: Photographs and Illustrations; Platte County Self-Defensive Association; Proslavery activities; Proslavery support; Stringfellow, Benjamin F.
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Authors: Sherwood, Thomas
Date: July 5, 1855
Thomas Sherwood wrote to Friend Woodward of the now-famous confrontation between Governor Andrew Reeder and Benjamin F. Stringfellow. According to Sherwood, the two men were only saved from shooting one another by the intervention of Reeder's private secretary, John Halderman, and the U.S. District Attorney for Kansas Territory, Andrew Isacks.
Keywords: Border ruffians; Bourbon County, Kansas Territory; Halderman, John Adams; Isacks, Andrew Jackson; Johnson County, Kansas Territory; Kansas Territory. Legislature; Pawnee, Kansas Territory; Reeder, Andrew H. (Andrew Horatio), 1807-1864; Shawnee Mission; Sherwood, Thomas; Stringfellow, Benjamin F.
Letter, Sam Tappan to Mrs. [Ellen] Goodnow
Authors: Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913
Date: June 29, 1855
Samuel Tappan wrote from Barker's Mission on the Shawnee Reserve in present-day Johnson County, Kansas Territory, to Ellen Goodnow, Isaac Goodnow's wife, near Manhattan. Tappan updated Ellen on the status of some misplaced luggage, providing a good description of local shipping and travel procedures. He praised the land of Kansas, " a glorious country to try 'men's soles' ". Tappan also described the recent scuffle between Governor Reeder and Benjamin Stringfellow, an incident which embodied the tension between anti and proslavery supporters.
Keywords: Freight and freightage; Goodnow, Ellen; Kansas Territory. Legislature - Pawnee/Shawnee Mission; Landscape; Reeder, Andrew H. (Andrew Horatio), 1807-1864; Shawnee Mission; Stringfellow, Benjamin F.; Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913
Letter, Josiah Miller to Dear Father and Mother
Authors: Miller, Josiah
Date: August 29, 1855
Josiah Miller, making arrangements for his parents' journey from South Carolina to Kansas Territory, wrote to his father and mother from his office at the Kansas Free State newspaper. He told them of his need to purchase personal arms for his own protection and described to them a recent situation of election fraud. Miller also wrote that his goal, as a newspaper editor, was to "move men to support the Free State ticket." He added that he was having a falling out with Robert Elliott, his business partner.
Keywords: Crops; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Election fraud; Elliott, Robert G.; Free state activities; Kansas Free State (newspaper); Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Miller, Josiah; Newspapers; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Stringfellow, Benjamin F.
Letter, unsigned [Marc Parrott] to Dear Edd [Edwin Parrott]
Authors: Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879
Date: December 15, 1855
Marcus Parrott wrote from Leavenworth, Kansas Territory, to his brother, Edwin Parrott, in Dayton, Ohio. Marcus recounted the events of the Wakarusa War, and described the actions of the Missourians prior to their attack, which supported his idea that it was premeditated. He told about his experience as a prisoner in the Missourians' camp and his interview with Governor Shannon regarding a peace treaty between the two groups. Marcus was pleased with the terms of the treaty, but was wary of Shannon's motives, saying that he was trying to "ring in" the free state party.
Keywords: Ammunition; Atchison, David Rice, 1807-1886; Barber, Thomas W.; Douglas County, Kansas Territory; Kansas River, Kansas Territory; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Leavenworth County, Kansas Territory; Leavenworth, Kansas Territory; Lecompton, Kansas Territory; Missourians; Parrott, Edwin A.; Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879; Shannon, Wilson, 1802-1877; Stringfellow, Benjamin F.; Wakarusa War, November-December 1855; Weapons (see also Guns)
Excerpt from letter, I. T. G [Isaac Goodnow] to [unknown]
Authors: Goodnow, Isaac T., 1814-1894
Date: January/February 1856
In the wake of the Wakarusa War, Isaac Goodnow wrote to an unknown recipient regarding recent skirmishes and negotiations between proslavery and free state supporters. According to Goodnow, Governor Shannon had demanded that the free state men surrender their Sharp's rifles and obey the laws of the "bogus" legislature. Governor Robinson had responded, telling his men to "keep the rifles, but surrender their contents." Goodnow also commented on the "determined heroism" of the free state women, and recounted the incident of voter fraud which occurred in the Delegate to Congress election between former Governor Reeder and J. W. Whitfield.
Keywords: Atchison, David Rice, 1807-1886; Bogus legislature; Border disputes and warfare; Border ruffians; Brown, George W. (George Washington), 1820-1915; Election fraud; Goodnow, Isaac T., 1814-1894; Lane, James Henry, 1814-1866; Lawrence, Kansas Territory; Reeder, Andrew H. (Andrew Horatio), 1807-1864; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; Shannon, Wilson, 1802-1877; Sharps rifles; Stringfellow, Benjamin F.; Whitfield, John W. (John Wilkins), ca. 1826-1879; Women
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