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Winter 1977, Volume 43, Number 4

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John Steuart Curry's preliminary sketches for the Kansas Capitol in Topeka, Kansas John Steuart Curry's preliminary sketches for the Kansas Capitol in Topeka, Kansas

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Type of Material - Unpublished documents - Government records - Constitutions

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Governor Clyde M. Reed correspondence, Blue Sky Department applications

Governor Clyde M. Reed correspondence, Blue Sky Department applications
Creator: Kansas. Governor (1929-1931 : Reed)
Date: 1929-1931
This file includes subject correspondence relating to applications of employment at the Blue Sky Department. The Blue Sky Department was formed during the Progressive Movement to regulate businesses and prevent monopolies of industries in the State of Kansas. This file is part of a bigger collection of Governor Clyde M. Reed correspondence.


J.A. McGinnis to Governor John St. John

J.A. McGinnis to Governor John St. John
Creator: McGinnis, J.A.
Date: March 10, 1880
With knowledge that Kansas Governor St. John has travel plans to Butler County, J.A. McGinnis invites him to also visit and lecture about temperance in El Dorado.


Leavenworth Constitution

Leavenworth Constitution
Date: April 3, 1858
The Leavenworth Constitution was the most radical of the four constitutions drafted for Kansas Territory. The Bill of Rights refers to "all men" and prohibited slavery from the state. The word "white" did not appear in the proposed document and therefore would not have excluded free blacks from the state. Article XVI, Section 3 directed the general assembly to provide some protection for the rights of women. The Leavenworth Constitution was ratified on May 18, 1858 but the U.S. Senate did not act to approve the document. At the time of its creation, the separate pages of the Leavenworth Constitution were pasted together and rolled into one long roll. It still exists in this state today. The last two articles, schedule, and signatures are missing from the original held by the State Archives. For information on the 1877 discovery of the original Leavenworth Constitution see the August 19, 2010 Kansas Memory blog post.


Lecompton Constitution

Lecompton Constitution
Date: November 7,1857
The Lecompton Constitution, the second constitution drafted for Kansas Territory, was written by proslavery supporters. The document permitted slavery (Article VII), excluded free blacks from living in Kansas, and allowed only male citizens of the United States to vote. There were three separate votes on the Lecompton Constitution: December 21, 1857, January 4, 1858, and August 2, 1858. In the final vote, residents of Kansas Territory rejected the Lecompton Constitution.


Topeka Constitution

Topeka Constitution
Date: November 12, 1855
The Topeka Constitution, the first constitution written for Kansas Territory, was drafted by free state supporters in reaction to contested elections that gave the proslavery party initial control of Kansas' territorial government. Free-staters gathered in convention at Lawrence on August 14 and Big Spring on September 5, 1855 and delegates assembled at Topeka on October 23, 1855, to draft a constitution. The document was approved on December 15 by a vote of 1,731 to 46. The Topeka Constitution prohibited slavery and limited suffrage to white males and "every civilized male Indian who has adopted the habits of the white man." Congress rejected this constitution and the accompanying request for Kansas to be admitted to the Union. While the first original was "filed in the office of the Executive Committee of Kansas Territory" in 1855, the location or existence of that original is not known. The convention made this copy of the original for submission to Congress and the signers verified that "it is a true copy and transcript of the original adopted at Topeka, Kansas Territory on the 12th day of November, 1855." The National Archives located this copy in the records of the U.S. Senate in the Fall of 2013. Citation: Constitution of the State of Kansas (Topeka Constitution), October 23, 1855, Records of the U.S. Senate, National Archives.


Wyandotte Constitution

Wyandotte Constitution
Creator: Kansas. Constitutional Convention (1859)
Date: July 29, 1859
Official copy of the Wyandotte Constitution that became the Constitution of the State of Kansas on January 29, 1861, when Kansas was admitted to the United States of America as the 34th state.


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