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Abstract of census returns

Abstract of census returns
Creator: Undersigned Citizens of Kansas Territory, John Stroup (first signature),
Date: 1859
This 1859 abstract of census returns shows information at the township level for most Kansas counties. Some counties are listed without data. The census lists the number of voters in three different ways--the number of votes cast June 7, 1859; number of voters on June 7, 1859 who were under 6 month provision; and number of voters under 3 month provision. It also lists the number of inhabitants. The election on June 7, 1859, was to elect delegates to the Wyandotte constitutional convention.


"Annals of Kansas" and the Wyandotte Constitution

"Annals of Kansas" and the Wyandotte Constitution
Creator: Wilder, Daniel Webster, 1832-1911
Date: June 4, 1859 through September 15, 1859
This twenty-one page excerpt is from Daniel Webster Wilder's "Annals of Kansas." It covers the period of June 4, 1859, through September 15, 1859, and includes the text of the Wyandotte Constitution.


C. E. Blood to Isaac Tichenor Goodnow

C. E. Blood to Isaac Tichenor Goodnow
Creator: Blood, C.E.
Date: June 20, 1859
C. E. Blood wrote from Manhattan, Kansas Territory, to Isaac Goodnow, imparting that the steamboat Gus Linn had arrived in Manhattan and a Mr. Devivilvi [Devivaldi] brought along his printing press and other equipment. The newspaper was then a "fixed and permanent fact." Blood updated Goodnow on the status of construction at the College and Joseph Denison's new home. He closed by reporting a rumor that there was a Republican majority in the Constitutional Convention at Wyandotte.


Champion Vaughan to S.O.Thacher and others

Champion Vaughan to S.O.Thacher and others
Date: July 7, 1859
Vaughan, editor of the Leavenworth Times, wrote this letter soon after the convention convened to introduce and lend his support to three "Delegates elect from Southern Nebraska to the Kansas Convention." They had convinced Vaughan that efforts toward annexation were not just more Democratic politics.


Clarina Irene Howard Nichols

Clarina Irene Howard Nichols
Date: Between 1845 and 1861
This photograph is a studio portrait of Clarina Irene Howard Nichols. In 1854 Nichols joined the New England Emigrant Aid Society and moved her family to a claim in southern Douglas County, near Lawrence, Kansas Territory. Her husband died the next year and in 1856 Nichols moved the family to Wyandotte County where she became associate editor of the Quindaro Chindowan, an abolitionist newspaper. Nichols attended the Wyandotte Constitutional Convention in 1859 where she secured liberal property rights for Kansas women, equal guardianship of their children, and the right to vote on all school questions. Susan B. Anthony paid tribute to Clarina Nichols in her book, "History of Woman Suffrage."


Clarina Irene Howard Nichols

Clarina Irene Howard Nichols
Date: between 1855 and 1861
Portrait of Clarina Irene Howard Nichols, 1810-1885. Nichols and her husband settled in Quindaro, Wyandotte County, Kansas Territory, where she was active in politics and women's rights. Nichols attended the Wyandotte Constitutional Convention in 1859, where she secured for Kansas women liberal property rights, equal guardianship of their children, and the right to vote on all school questions. Susan B. Anthony paid tribute to Clarina Nichols in her book, "History of Woman Suffrage."


Cyrus Kurtz Holliday to Mary Dillon Holliday

Cyrus Kurtz Holliday to Mary Dillon Holliday
Creator: Holliday, Cyrus Kurtz, 1826-1900
Date: March 31, 1859
Cyrus K. Holliday wrote from Topeka, Kansas Territory to his wife, Mary Holliday, who had returned to Meadville, Pennsylvania to give birth to their second child, Charles. Cyrus had been joined in Kansas Territory by his mother and two brothers, James T. and George K. Holliday. Cyrus sadly told of his mother's death at George's home in Wakarusa, Kansas Territory. He suggested that Mary wait to return to Topeka until May 1st, when Alfred Huidekoper of Meadville would issue him a loan. Cyrus also mentioned his political aspirations and two upcoming elections, the first at the Osawatomie Republican Convention, the second for delegates to the Wyandotte Constitutional Convention.


Cyrus Kurtz Holliday to Mary Dillon Holliday

Cyrus Kurtz Holliday to Mary Dillon Holliday
Creator: Holliday, Cyrus Kurtz, 1826-1900
Date: July 14, 1859
Cyrus K. Holliday wrote from the Wyandotte Convention to his wife, Mary Holliday, in Meadville, Pennsylvania. His efforts to ensure that Topeka would be the capital of Kansas Territory had set back his personal political career (territorially and nationally, that is; he had recently been elected mayor of Topeka). Cyrus anxiously awaited the return of Mary and their children, Lillie and newborn Charles.


Cyrus Kurtz Holliday to Mary Dillon Holliday

Cyrus Kurtz Holliday to Mary Dillon Holliday
Creator: Holliday, Cyrus Kurtz, 1826-1900
Date: February 6, 1859
Cyrus K. Holliday, soon to return to Topeka after a productive territorial legislative session in Lawrence, wrote to his wife, Mary Holliday, in Meadville, Pennsylvania. He wrote about a festival held at the Eldridge House, and reported on several other incidents of note: the arrest of John W. Doy, captured by Missourians while helping former slaves travel to Iowa; John Brown's avoidance of capture by [John P.] Woods (at the Battle of the Spurs on January 31, 1859); and Charles Fischer's escape after being twice arrested as "a fugitive slave." Holliday also wrote that the legislature had passed and Governor Samuel Medary would approve a bill granting Josephine Branscomb a divorce. Despite Holliday's efforts, the constitutional convention would be held at Wyandotte in July. He had refused [Alfred L.] Winans' request for a recommendation.


Cyrus Kurtz Holliday to Mary Dillon Holliday

Cyrus Kurtz Holliday to Mary Dillon Holliday
Creator: Holliday, Cyrus Kurtz, 1826-1900
Date: January 30, 1859
Cyrus K. Holliday wrote from Lawrence, Kansas Territory to his wife, Mary Holliday, who, accompanied by Mrs. Edward C. K. Garvey, had returned to Meadville, Pennsylvania to give birth to her second child. Meanwhile, Cyrus Holliday (who was Vice President of the upper territorial legislative body, the Council) had passed four bills, including one establishing Topeka as the Shawnee county seat. He bought new clothes for the session, since Lawrence had become more refined, with a new hotel. Holliday mentioned emigration to Pikes Peak, the Topeka bridge, trouble in L[i]nn county, and meeting three women, Mrs. Smith, Mrs. [Robert] Morrow, and Mrs. O'Donell (possibly Mrs. William O'Donnall) in Lawrence. He proposed that Liz, Mary Holliday's younger sister, return with her.


Edmund Gibson Ross

Edmund Gibson Ross
Creator: Cobb,
Edmund Gibson Ross was active in Kansas Territory politics and served as a delegate to the Wyandotte Constitutional Convention. He and his brother, William W. Ross, were editors of the "Kansas Tribune" in Topeka, Shawnee County, Kansas Territory. Ross served as the U. S. Senator from Kansas from 1866 to 1871.


F. M. Cummins to Samuel N. Wood

F. M. Cummins to Samuel N. Wood
Creator: Cummins, F. M.
Date: November 13, 1859
Writing from El Mendaro in Madison County, Kansas Territory, F. M. Cummins speculates about Wood's November 8, 1859, election defeat. (Interestingly, when the territorial legislature convened in January, 1860, Wood, and not his Democratic opponent, T. S. Huffaker, represented the 23rd District.) In a faded letter, Cummins writes that "the ill timed article in your [Wood's] issue of Oct 31st [the Kansas Press, Council Grove] on Jim Lane pretty effectively "cooked" your prospects in Madison County. . . ." Cummins mentions Wood's candidacy for the state senate (election of December 6, the first under the Wyandotte Constitution) and writes: "Being a Lane man myself and knowing your opposition to him I cannot wish you success. . . ."


Fellow Citizens--In Support of the Wyandotte Constitution

Fellow Citizens--In Support of the Wyandotte Constitution
Creator: Martin, John Alexander, 1839-1889
Date: July, 1859
This eleven-page document is a speech or essay, most likely in John Alexander Martin's handwriting, delivered in support of the proposed Wyandotte Constitution that was ratified by the voters of the territory on October 4, 1859. Martin, a twenty-year-old Atchison editor, served as secretary for the convention, which finished its work at the end of July. This speech, attacking the Democrats for conspiring to defeat the latest free-state constitution and for "the Lecomptonizing of Kansas," was undoubtedly delivered several times during the months of August and September, 1859. It addressed the various issues opponents were likely to use to defeat the constitution at the polls and stressed that, in light of actions of "a servile judiciary," slavery could not be removed from Kansas until it was admitted as a "sovereign state."


G. W. Paddock diary

G. W. Paddock diary
Creator: Paddock, G. W.
Date: April 12, 1857 - July 28, 1860
G. W. Paddock was a minister and free-state supporter who came to Kansas Territory in 1857. He describes his daily activities and his religious work, as well as his impressions of the city of Wyandotte while the constitutional convention was meeting there. His entries for this time period indicate he visited the convention, although he does not discuss the substance of the proceedings. The 1857 portion describes some of the free state controversies. He also mentions working with American Indians; however, his descriptions are often stereotypical and uncomplimentary. A number of entries from this diary were selected, but the entire diary is not included.


Governor Samuel Medary, annual message

Governor Samuel Medary, annual message
Creator: Medary, S. (Samuel), 1801-1864
Date: January 3, 1860
Governor Medary addressed his annual message to the Council and House of Representatives of Kansas Territory from the executive office in Lecompton, Kansas Territory on January 3, 1860. At this point, the Wyandotte Constitution had been approved and was awaiting action by Congress. Medary outlined a number of issues that the legislature needed to resolve. These included the organization of counties and townships, setting interest rates, public schools, procedures for selling public lands, bank charters, a penitentiary, a territorial library, and railroads. He indicated that he believed a law passed by the last session of the legislature deprived many citizens of the right to vote that that law needed to be changed.


Governor Samuel Medary, veto message on the bill prohibiting slavery in Kansas.

Governor Samuel Medary, veto message on the bill prohibiting slavery in Kansas.
Creator: Medary, S. (Samuel), 1801-1864
Date: February 20, 1860
Samuel Medary presented a very detailed message about why he was vetoring a bill prohibiting slavery in Kansas that had been passed by the territorial House of Representatives. This printed document contained a long discussion about the sovereignty (or lack thereof) by the federal government, territories and states and how that applied to the institution of slavery. He ultimately argued that the law passed contained no means of enforcement but only enacted the "declaratory" statement about slavery contained in the Wyandotte Constitution.


Grand Complimentary Ball

Grand Complimentary Ball
Date: July 29, 1859
This ball was being held in honor of the Democratic members of the constitutional convention that was being held in Wyandotte at Overton's Hall. Music was provided by the Wyandott Cotillion Band. Numerous people were listed as managers, floor managers, etc.


James Frazier Legate

James Frazier Legate
Creator: Henry, E. E.
Date: Between 1880 and 1885
This cabinet card shows James Frazier Legate,(1829-1902). A politician from Leavenworth, Kansas, Legate began his political career in 1861 when he was elected to the first House of Representatives under the Wyandotte Constitution. The following year he was appointed the state assessor for Kansas and was responsible for organizing the revenue services of the state. Legate's political career resumed in 1864 when he was elected to the Kansas Senate from the twenty-fourth district. He served one term in the Senate,1865-1866, before his appointment as a postal agent for the U.S. government, 1867-1868. Within two years, Legate was elected to the Kansas House of Representatives and served from 1871 to 1889. Through out Legate's political career he was associated with several scandals but never convicted of any wrong doings.


James Frazier Legate

James Frazier Legate
Creator: Martin, H. T.
Date: Between 1889 and 1890
This cabinet card shows James Frazier Legate,(1829-1902). A politician from Leavenworth, Kansas, Legate began his political career, in 1861, when he was elected to the first House of Representatives under the Wyandotte Constitution. The following year he was appointed the state assessor for Kansas and was responsible for organizing the revenue services of the state. Legate's political career resumed in 1864, when he was elected to the Kansas Senate from the twenty-fourth district. He served one term in the senate, 1865-1866, before his appointment as a postal agent for the U.S. government, 1867-1868. Within two years, Legate was elected to the Kansas House of Representatives and served from 1871 to 1889. Through out Legate's political career, he was associated with several scandals but never convicted of any wrong doings.


James Frazier Legate

James Frazier Legate
Creator: Leonard, J. H.
Date: Between 1890 and 1902
This cabinet card shows James Frazier Legate,(1829-1902). A politician from Leavenworth, Kansas, Legate began his political career in 1861, when he was elected to the first House of Representatives under the Wyandotte Constitution. The following year he was appointed the State Assessor for Kansas and was responsible for organizing the revenue services of the state. Legate's political career resumed in 1864, when he was elected to the Kansas Senate from the Twenty-Fourth District. He served one term in the Senate, 1865-1866, before his appointment as a Postal Agent for the U.S. Government, 1867-1868. Within two years, Legate was elected to the Kansas House of Representatives and served from 1871 to 1889.


James Hanway

James Hanway
James Hanway was active in free state activities. He was a friend of John Brown and served in John Brown, Jr.'s militia company. He was a delegate to the Wyandotte Constitutional convention.


James R. Mead to his father

James R. Mead to his father
Creator: Mead, James R. (James Richard), b. 1836
Date: August 13, 1859
In this letter, James Mead writes from Tecumseh, Kansas Territory, to his father about his efforts to secure a claim. He includes information about the people of the territory, the beautiful vegetation, and the flourishing towns. Mead also writes of the immense amount of traffic along the Santa Fe Trail and of the roads to Lecompton and Topeka, which he declares are "the best roads I ever saw anywhere." In addition, he describes the buildings of Burlingame, Kansas Territory, and the make up of the community. At the end of the letter, he mentions the new constitution, which "is all Free State." These typed copies of the James R. Mead's letters were donated to the Kansas State Historical Society by Mr. Mead's family in 1940 when the originals were still owned by the family. The originals are now held by Wichita State University.


John A. Martin, letter

John A. Martin, letter
Creator: Martin, John Alexander, 1839-1889
Date: Around 1858
In his capacity as chairman of the Atchison County Republican Central Committee, John Alexander Martin apparently wrote this draft of a letter to a member of the Democratic opposition, responding to an invitation to make a speech in support, or participate in a discussion, of the proposed Wyandotte Constitution. The campaign for its ratification took place in August and September, 1858. Martin expressed a willingness to speak out for the constitution, but he objected to the proposed format ("the programme of discussion you have laid down"). Martin insisted that the Republicans were "proud" of the constitution, and "are willing to go before the people with the members of the Democratic party" and discuss its provisions "on any fair terms."


John A. Martin to J. M. Winchell

John A. Martin to J. M. Winchell
Date: September 7, 1859
In the weeks following the close of the Wyandotte Constitutional Convention, John A. Martin, the convention's secretary, and James M. Winchell, president of the convention, were occupied with the campaign for its ratification. This letter from Martin, dated Atchison, September 7, 1859, addressed some of the steps that had been and should be taken in the document's behalf during the bitter, partisan campaign leading up to the October 4, 1859, referendum.


John James Ingalls to Elias T. Ingalls

John James Ingalls to Elias T. Ingalls
Creator: Ingalls, John James, 1833-1900
Date: July 5, 1859
On the first day of the Wyandotte Constitutional Convention, Ingalls wrote from Wyandotte, Kansas, with observation on the city and the nature of the convention, which he considered "not a very superior one." Nevertheless, the Republicans had a big majority, and Ingalls was "on some of the most important committees in the convention and shall be obliged to do some hard work."


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