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Territorial Politics and Government > Territorial Politics > Lecompton Constitution ratification (Dec. 1857)
9 Topic Specific Items
Letter, M. [Martin] F. Conway to F. [Franklin] B. Sanborn
Author: Conway, Martin Franklin
Date: November 16, 1857

Shortly before he was to leave Washington, D.C., for a return trip to the territory, Conway wrote Sanborn in Concord, Mass., about his disappointment at again being separated from his wife and child, but he focused most of his comments on the Lecompton machinations and his continued belief that the Free State Party had be wrong to participate in the territorial election (thus giving that government legitimacy).

Keywords: Calhoun, John; Conway, Martin Franklin; Democratic Party (U.S.); Douglas, Stephen Arnold, 1813-1861; Election, Lecompton Constitution ratification, December 1857; Free State Party; Lecompton Constitution; Republican Party (U.S.: 1854- ); Sanborn, F. B. (Franklin Benjamin), 1831-1917; Slavery; United States. Congress

Letter, Geo. S. Boutwell to "My dear Sir" [Governor Salmon P. Chase]
Author: Boutwell, George S.
Date: November 24, 1857

George Boutwell of Indianapolis, Indiana, wrote the governor of Ohio, Salmon P. Chase, regarding the forthcoming vote on the Lecompton Constitution--for the constitution with or without slavery. Boutwell explained why he believed the best alternative for Kansas free staters was to "abstain from voting." He asked Chase to encourage his Kansas friends to follow this course. (Chase likely forwarded this letter to Robinson.)

Keywords: Boutwell, George S.; Chase, Salmon P. (Salmon Portland), 1808-1873; Columbus, Ohio; Democratic Party (U.S.); Election, Lecompton Constitution ratification, December 1857; Free state cause; Lecompton Constitution; Slavery; United States. Congress

Letter, [U. S. Senator] H. Wilson to "Dear [Charles] Robinson"
Author: Wilson, Henry , 1812-1875
Date: November 26, 1857

U.S. Senator Henry Wilson (1812-1875), a Republican from Massachusetts who was to become vice president of the United States in 1873, wrote Robinson from his home in Natick, Mass., regarding the Lecompton controversy. Robinson apparently had written for "advise" and Wilson simply wrote "you must look well to the position of matters and act as seems to you best." He did not believe it could pass the Congress "but if it is adopted do not fail to elect your state officers under it. Get the power if you can. . . ."

Keywords: Buchanan administration; Buchanan, James, 1791-1868; Lecompton Constitution; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; United States. Congress; United States. Congress. Senate; Wilson, Henry, 1812-1875

Letter, Gaius Jenkins to Gov. [Charles] Robinson
Author: Jenkins, Gaius
Date: November 29, 1857

From Washington, D.C., Gaius Jenkins, the man who would be shot and killed by Jim Lane on June 3, 1858, wrote Robinson regarding an business/investment issue (apparently a Wyandotte Float, perhaps involving the Quindaro land investment) of theirs before Congress, but devoted most of his letter to "the Kansas question" and "that bogus [Lecompton] constitution. Former K.T. Governor Robert J. Walker, who Jenkins "called on" in D.C., branded it "the most damnable absurdity and rong [sic] that he had ever known committed in a Republican government. . . ."

Keywords: Buchanan administration; Jenkins, Gaius; Kansas question; Lecompton Constitution; Quindaro Town Company; Robinson, Charles, 1818-1894; United States. Congress; Walker, Robert J. (Robert John), 1801-1869; Washington, D.C.; Wyandot Float

Letter, Marc [Parrott] to Dr Edd [Edwin Parrott]
Author: Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879
Date: December 10, 1857

Marcus Parrott wrote from Washington, D.C., to his brother, Edwin Parrott, regarding recent dramatic political events. Marcus referred to Democrat Stephen Douglas' "breaking" with President Buchanan. Both men supported popular sovereignty in Kansas, as well as the solidarity of the Union. However, the President, unwilling to override the work of what he considered a legitimate Lecompton Constitutional Convention or to cancel a local election result, asked Congress to approve the Lecompton Constitution, make Kansas momentarily a slave state, and thus enable the people there to make any new constitution they wished. But Douglas, outraged by such a distortion of his vision of popular sovereignty , broke with Buchanan and joined with the Republicans to defeat the admission of Kansas.

Keywords: Buchanan, James, 1791-1868; Douglas, Stephen Arnold, 1813-1861; Election, Lecompton Constitution ratification, December 1857; National politics; Parrott, Edwin A.; Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879; United States. Congress; Walker, Robert J. (Robert John), 1801-1869; Washington, D.C.

Letter, Sam. F. Tappan to Dr Gen [Thomas W. Higginson]
Author: Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913
Date: December 14, 1857

This letter, written from Lawrence, Kansas Territory by Samuel Tappan, began with small talk about his personal life. Tappan quickly moved on, however, to the political affairs of the area. Apparently, Charles Robinson and James Lane were encouraging the free state population to vote in the next election regarding the Lecompton Constitution. They were planning on holding a free state convention in a couple of weeks to decide if this was the best course of action. Tappan believed that if free state men voted in the upcoming election, it would be a tacit acceptance of slavery. He was also disappointed that the Topeka government had failed, blaming its collapse on the fact that it had been too concerned with weighing "the chances of success in Washington." The free state territorial legislature had just opened its session in Lecompton.

Keywords: Calhoun, John; Constitutions; Election, Lecompton Constitution ratification, December 1857; Free state legislature; Free state movement (see also Topeka Movement); Kansas Territory. Legislature - Lecompton; Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement)

Election Returns and Ballots, Fort Scott Precinct, Bourbon County, Special Election, December 21, 1857 on the Lecompton Constitution with or without slavery
Author: Greenwood, Daniel ; Hamilton, George P.; Head, Joseph W.
Date: December 21, 1857

Election returns and actual elections ballots cast in Fort Scott Precinct, Bourbon County, Kansas Territory during the December 21, 1857, election on ratification of the Lecompton Constitution "with slavery" or the constitution "without slavery." Because a vote "for the constitution without slavery" meant Kansans could keep the slaves they already owned, free staters refused to participate. In this election, the "constitution with slavery" won 6,226 to 569. Results in Fort Scott were 318 to 19 in favor the the "constitution with slavery." Note that the largest ballot (No. 1) was signed by J. C. Head, whose name also is listed first on the election returns for Fort Scott.

Keywords: Ballot; Bourbon County, Kansas Territory; Election, Lecompton Constitution ratification, December 1857; Elections; Fort Scott, Kansas Territory; Greenwood, Daniel; Hamilton, George P.; Head, J. C.; Head, Joseph W.; Lecompton Constitution

Report of the President of the Council and Speaker of the House of Representatives of the Territory of Kansas, on the result of the vote of December 21st for the Lecompton Constitution, and on the result of the election of Januray 4th under said Constitution.
Author: Babcock, Carmi William; Deitzler, George W.; Denver, James William, 1817-1892
Date: January 14, 1858

This printed document reported the votes on the Lecompton Constitution from elections held on December 21, 1857, and January 4, 1858. It was prepared by G. W. Deitzler, Speaker of the House and C. W. Babcock, president of the Council of the territorial legislature. The vote showed a majority of 5,574 for the constitution with slavery but 3,012 of those votes came from areas the authors felt were sparsely settled and thus indicated fraudulent votes. The same charges of fraud applied to the election for state officials, though the free state candidates claimed a small majority in all races. The results of the vote on the Lecompton Constitution on January 4, 1858, showed a majority of 10,000 against the Lecompton Constitution as presented in a proclamation from J. W. Denver, Secretary and Acting Governor.

Keywords: Babcock, Carmi William; Deitzler, George W.; Denver, James William, 1817-1892; Election fraud; Election, Lecompton Constitution ratification, December 1857; Election, Lecompton Constitution ratification, January 1858; Elections; Free state activities; Free state supporters; Lecompton Constitution; Proslavery activities; Proslavery supporters

Report on the result of the vote of Dec. 21, 1857 and Jan. 4, 1858 including proclamation on the official vote by acting Gov. Denver, Jan. 14, 1858
Author: Babcock, Carmi William; Deitzler, George W.; Denver, James William, 1817-1892
Date: January 14, 1858



Keywords: Babcock, Carmi William; Deitzler, George W.; Denver, James William, 1817-1892; Election, Lecompton Constitution ratification, December 1857; Election, Lecompton Constitution ratification, January 1858; Elections; Lecompton Constitution

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8 results for Election, Lecompton Constitution ratification, December 1857:
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Letter, M. [Martin] F. Conway to F. [Franklin] B. Sanborn
Authors: Conway, Martin Franklin
Date:  November 16, 1857
Shortly before he was to leave Washington, D.C., for a return trip to the territory, Conway wrote Sanborn in Concord, Mass., about his disappointment at again being separated from his wife and child, but he focused most of his comments on the Lecompton machinations and his continued belief that the Free State Party had be wrong to participate in the territorial election (thus giving that government legitimacy).

Keywords: Calhoun, John; Conway, Martin Franklin; Democratic Party (U.S.); Douglas, Stephen Arnold, 1813-1861; Election, Lecompton Constitution ratification, December 1857; Free State Party; Lecompton Constitution; Republican Party (U.S.: 1854- ); Sanborn, F. B. (Franklin Benjamin), 1831-1917; Slavery; United States. Congress


Letter, Geo. S. Boutwell to "My dear Sir" [Governor Salmon P. Chase]
Authors: Boutwell, George S.
Date:  November 24, 1857
George Boutwell of Indianapolis, Indiana, wrote the governor of Ohio, Salmon P. Chase, regarding the forthcoming vote on the Lecompton Constitution--for the constitution with or without slavery. Boutwell explained why he believed the best alternative for Kansas free staters was to "abstain from voting." He asked Chase to encourage his Kansas friends to follow this course. (Chase likely forwarded this letter to Robinson.)

Keywords: Boutwell, George S.; Chase, Salmon P. (Salmon Portland), 1808-1873; Columbus, Ohio; Democratic Party (U.S.); Election, Lecompton Constitution ratification, December 1857; Free state cause; Lecompton Constitution; Slavery; United States. Congress


Letter, Marc [Parrott] to Dr Edd [Edwin Parrott]
Authors: Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879
Date:  December 10, 1857
Marcus Parrott wrote from Washington, D.C., to his brother, Edwin Parrott, regarding recent dramatic political events. Marcus referred to Democrat Stephen Douglas' "breaking" with President Buchanan. Both men supported popular sovereignty in Kansas, as well as the solidarity of the Union. However, the President, unwilling to override the work of what he considered a legitimate Lecompton Constitutional Convention or to cancel a local election result, asked Congress to approve the Lecompton Constitution, make Kansas momentarily a slave state, and thus enable the people there to make any new constitution they wished. But Douglas, outraged by such a distortion of his vision of popular sovereignty , broke with Buchanan and joined with the Republicans to defeat the admission of Kansas.

Keywords: Buchanan, James, 1791-1868; Douglas, Stephen Arnold, 1813-1861; Election, Lecompton Constitution ratification, December 1857; National politics; Parrott, Edwin A.; Parrott, Marcus J., 1828-1879; United States. Congress; Walker, Robert J. (Robert John), 1801-1869; Washington, D.C.


Letter, Sam. F. Tappan to Dr Gen [Thomas W. Higginson]
Authors: Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913
Date:  December 14, 1857
This letter, written from Lawrence, Kansas Territory by Samuel Tappan, began with small talk about his personal life. Tappan quickly moved on, however, to the political affairs of the area. Apparently, Charles Robinson and James Lane were encouraging the free state population to vote in the next election regarding the Lecompton Constitution. They were planning on holding a free state convention in a couple of weeks to decide if this was the best course of action. Tappan believed that if free state men voted in the upcoming election, it would be a tacit acceptance of slavery. He was also disappointed that the Topeka government had failed, blaming its collapse on the fact that it had been too concerned with weighing "the chances of success in Washington." The free state territorial legislature had just opened its session in Lecompton.

Keywords: Calhoun, John; Constitutions; Election, Lecompton Constitution ratification, December 1857; Free state legislature; Free state movement (see also Topeka Movement); Kansas Territory. Legislature - Lecompton; Tappan, S. F. (Samuel Forster), d. 1913; Topeka Movement (see also Free state movement)


Election Returns and Ballots, Fort Scott Precinct, Bourbon County, Special Election, December 21, 1857 on the Lecompton Constitution with or without slavery
Authors: Greenwood, Daniel ; Hamilton, George P.; Head, Joseph W.
Date:  December 21, 1857
Election returns and actual elections ballots cast in Fort Scott Precinct, Bourbon County, Kansas Territory during the December 21, 1857, election on ratification of the Lecompton Constitution "with slavery" or the constitution "without slavery." Because a vote "for the constitution without slavery" meant Kansans could keep the slaves they already owned, free staters refused to participate. In this election, the "constitution with slavery" won 6,226 to 569. Results in Fort Scott were 318 to 19 in favor the the "constitution with slavery." Note that the largest ballot (No. 1) was signed by J. C. Head, whose name also is listed first on the election returns for Fort Scott.

Keywords: Ballot; Bourbon County, Kansas Territory; Election, Lecompton Constitution ratification, December 1857; Elections; Fort Scott, Kansas Territory; Greenwood, Daniel; Hamilton, George P.; Head, J. C.; Head, Joseph W.; Lecompton Constitution


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