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Collections - Manuscript - Blackman, William I. R.

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Complaint about seizure of Briscoe Davis's house and family

Complaint about seizure of Briscoe Davis's house and family
Date: November 18, 1856
According to an explanation written by Edward Hoogland on the outside of the document, Briscoe Davis' sister (unnamed) wrote this complaint describing the October 24, 1856 looting of Mr. Davis' house in Linn County by free state supporters led by a Captain Holmes (likely James R. Holmes, a Free State Militia captain). The seizure of Davis' home took place shortly after Governor John Geary's October 1856 visit to southeastern Kansas Territory.


Draft of the Wakarusa treaty

Draft of the Wakarusa treaty
Creator: Shannon, Wilson, 1802-1877
Date: December 08, 1855
On November 21, 1855, Charles W. Dow, a free-state man, was shot by Franklin N. Coleman, a pro-slavery leader, near Hickory Point, Douglas County, in a dispute over a claim. Sheriff Jones, of Douglas County, arrested Jacob Branson, who lived with Dow. Branson was subsequently taken from Sheriff Jones by a group of free-state men. Sheriff Jones and approximately 1500 militia volunteers from Missouri laid seige to Lawrence, claiming there was a rebellion. By December 8, the free-state forces, led by James Lane, Charles Robinson and Lyman Allen, convinced Governor Shannon that they were only planning to defend Lawrence, not go on the offensive. These documents, from what came to be called the "Wakarusa War," include an officer's commission and several discharges of members of the Kansas Rifles No. 1--the free-state militia--and a draft of the treaty that was signed by Lane, Robinson, and Governor Wilson Shannon to end the "war."


Invitation to Washington's Birthday Ball

Invitation to Washington's Birthday Ball
Creator: Kansas Rifles Number 1
Date: February 1856
A printed invitation to a Washington's birthday ball hosted by the Kansas Rifles No. 1 at the Free State Hotel on February 22, 1856.


Kansas State Central Committee to Colonel Cooke

Kansas State Central Committee to Colonel Cooke
Creator: Kansas State Central Committee
Date: September 03, 1856
A letter from the Kansas State Central Committee to Colonel Philip St. George Cooke, in Lecompton. At the time of border conflict, this free-state committee sought protection from possible attack by Missourians.


List of voters of 7th senatorial district

List of voters of 7th senatorial district
Creator: Barry, Abraham
Date: September 3, 1856
A list of the voters in Kansas Territory's 7th senatorial district, which included Manhattan and the area surrounding it. Voters were categorized as free soilers, proslavery, and doubtful. The census was taken by order of the "Central Committee" (a free state group) and was signed by Abraham Barry, Isaac T. Goodnow, and J. D. Adams of District Committee No. 7.


Names of prisoners in custody at Lecompton

Names of prisoners in custody at Lecompton
Creator: Hoogland, Edward
Date: November 12, 1856
A list of free state prisoners in custody at Lecompton, Kansas Territory. Most of the prisoners had been captured at the Battle of Hickory Point on September 13, 1856. The list records each prisoner's name, previous state of residence, and reason for imprisonment. The last page of the document lists prisoners who had been released. The list was prepared by Edward Hoogland by order of Governor John Geary.


Statement of votes polled and tally sheet for election of officers under the Topeka Constitution, Lawrence precinct

Statement of votes polled and tally sheet for election of officers under the Topeka Constitution, Lawrence precinct
Creator: Blackman, William I. R.
Date: August 3, 1857
An official statement and accompanying tally sheet detaling the results of the "State Election" held under the authority of the Topeka Constitution. This document was from the Lawrence precinct and was certified by election judges W. I. R. Blackman, A. H. Mallory, and Alfred Robinson. Election participants were primarily free state supporters who cast votes for state officials, representatives to the U.S. Congress, and U.S. senators; they also indicated whether they were for or against the Topeka Constitution.


Testimony taken before grand jury investigating the Pottawatomie murders

Testimony taken before grand jury investigating the Pottawatomie murders
Date: May, 1856
A portion of the testimony taken before a Franklin County grand jury, under the direction of Judge Sterling G. Cato, charged with identifying the parties involved in the May 24, 1856, killings on Pottawatomie Creek. Included are the statements of Harvey Jackson, Amos Hall, I. R. McDaniel, Luther ?, and Isaac Shaw. Hall stated that he had seen "Old Man Brown" [John Brown] in a wagon on May 22, 1856. A one page explanation of the testimony, signed by Edward Hoogland, is attached.


Wakarusa Treaty

Wakarusa Treaty
Creator: Shannon, Wilson, 1802-1877
Date: December 8, 1855
A draft of an agreement between Governor Wilson Shannon, representing the territorial government, and Charles Robinson and James Lane, representing the free state movement, settling the dispute that resulted in the Wakarusa War. In essence, Robinson and Lane pledged to "aid in the execution of any legal process" against individuals involved in rescuing free state supporter Jacob Branson provided that these individuals received a hearing before a U.S. District Court judge. This compromise ended the Wakarusa War.


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