of Lawrence, Kansas Territory, to the
Chamber of Commerce, St Louis, Mo
While all American Constitutions regard government as based upon the expression or tacit consent of the governed, and the Supreme power of State as always residing in the people, it is not essential to a pure Democracy that its powers should be delegated to Executive or Legislative agents, but exigencies may arise wherein the high moral trust may be executed by the Sovereign people, in conserving their own rights and liberties, in the absence of official agents; Such an exigency has now arisen with us in which the supremacy of the popular will must be recognised in securing our own happiness against foreign abuses---in defending the rights and repelling the wrong. You must be already aware that while without an outward, operative government of our own, while we were weak in numbers, wealth, and all the requisites for the administration of justice, our soil has been repeatedly invaded by formed mobs as well as organised armies from your State, who, without provocation or the slightest pretext, have wantonly murdered our peaceable citisens, destroyed our ballot boxes pillaged our property blockaded our town, and threatened it with demolition and its inhabitants with death, and that it has been only through the most unparalelled forbearance in some instances, and manly defense of our inherent rights in others that we have escaped a most deadly civil war. Recent observations evidence to us that there is an extensive organisation in your State, which is preparing for an immediate attack upon our town
and that recruiting offices are moving to and fro enrolled men in the several counties who go through with daily military drill, for the same unhallowed purpose. We have committed no crime, violated the international faith toward no State, but have ever sought to maintain the sanctity of the most powerful relations toward all men. We came to Kansas because we believed it possessed the most inviting climate luxuriant soil, and enchanting scenery now open to the emigrant upon this continent. We came to build up for ourselves and our children, beautiful homes, where, as the inheritance of a free government, we and they might enjoy a lifetime, having our cups filled daily with the quietus of domestic joy. We have been educated in the schools of peace, and nothing would be more abhorrent to our natures, than to see the smoke of battle, curling over these lovely prairies, or to feel again the smart of those grievous outrages, with which your people are now threatening us. These considerations, gentlemen, prompt us to address you in a commercial capacity.
We have chosen a residence in Lawrence, from its unrivalled situation upon the only navigable River in the Territory, an indispensable requisite in building up a large commercial city. We have erected suitable stores for a wholesale and retail trade and have already secured a very flattering business with the interior country. Although it is but little more than twelve months since the first store was erected here, yet we have already paid to your State over $100,000, a large proportion of which has gone to your city, and the trade of our entire Territory with your State thus far has been nearly one million of dollars. This circumstance alone has already raised the prices of many articles of Export in your State, from two hundred, to
five hundred percent, and your city is extending her levees and enlarging her ware rooms, in anticipation of our future trade. With an area four times as large as your whole State, our prospective business must be, at least, fully equal to that of Missouri and our prosperity in a commercial sense has quite as much to do with the future greatness of your city, as any constructive considerations it is possible to deduce from your own State. Geographically, St. Louis is the Commercial mart of Kansas for years to come, or until by dint or our own industry and the richness or our soil, manufacturing and commercial cities will be built upon our own rivers, and even then, they will reciprocally add to your enterprise and wealth. The chain of all our public interests, therefore, becomes directly linked with yours. Our prosperity is yours---our adversity is yours. Our invasion is yours---our conquest is yours. [xxx], if, by an unnatural and coercive policy on your part, we are induced to open new thorough-fares for trade with other cities and invest our wealth in opening railroads and telegraphic communications with the same, the weight of your impudence will recoil only upon your own heads, and in due time we shall escape from the fiery ordeal, unscathed.
Although the froward Spirit of President Peirce, according to his message, has not yet discerned anything in our grievances, “that have occurred under circumstances to justify the interposition of the Federal Executive,” we still hope and trust that so far as the [xxx] of Missouri are implicated they have occurred in such a manner as will justify your interposition. Especially when unmistakable evidences are before us, that we are soon to be overrun again by an armed force, unless immediate measures are taken to repress them. Like great events, casting their shadows forward, the for-
bodings of the future have produced a general paralysis in all departments of business throughout the Territory. Our trade is not one third as large as it was three months ago. Mechanics, laborers of all kinds complain alike of the general depression. In the border towns of your State, the same want of enterprise is observed. Let this continue, and our remittances to your city the coming season will be very limited. Emigration is retarded, consequently no new money is brought in to circulation and we are cursed, not with war alone, but “war, pestilence and famine” We wish to urge upon you these considerations, and by virtue of your commercial influence throughout the State, ask of you, to intercede in our behalf, in staying the hand of evil doers, that we may go on developing our own greatness and yours, and long enjoy the pleasures of those relations, we have mutually found, thus far, so profitable and pleasant.
Appeal from the Lawrence Merchants
Hornsbys & Ferril
T. M. Cox & Co
G. W. M. Hutchinson
W. C Duncan
Woodward & Finley
P. Richmond Brooks
J. J. Farriss
Rau & [xxx]
L. H. Brown & Co