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Abstract of journals from the 1845 Kearny Expedition

Abstract of journals from the 1845 Kearny Expedition
Date: 1846
This excerpt from the congressional report of the Secretary of War includes the abstracts of two journals, one by Lieutenant William B. Franklin, a topographical engineer, and another by Lieutenant H.S. Turner of the 1st dragoons stationed at Fort Leavenworth. Under the command of Stephen Kearny, the 1st dragoons and their accompanying engineers left Fort Leavenworth on a military march, heading northwest on what would become the Oregon Trail, down along the Rocky Mountains to Mexican territory, and back up via the Santa Fe Trail. This march was intended as a display of the United States' military power to both native tribes and the British government (which at this time was exerting its authority over Oregon Territory). For the most part this abstract details their route, but it does include a transcription of a conversation between Kearny and a Sioux chief named Bull Tail.


Account of provisions and supplies issued to destitute Shawnees

Account of provisions and supplies issued to destitute Shawnees
Creator: Abbott, James Burnett
Date: 1861
This account book belonging to an Indian agent named James Burnett Abbott lists the names of Shawnee Indian heads of household, the number of family members within their household, and the amount of pork, corn, and meal provided by the government to each Shawnee. The Shawnee had emigrated to Kansas after the Indian Removal Act of 1830. Only an excerpt is included here.


Amelia Josephine Labedia to James W. Denver

Amelia Josephine Labedia to James W. Denver
Creator: Labedia, Amelia Josephine
Date: March 8, 1857
Amelia Labedia, a Native American from one of the New York Indian tribes, wrote this letter of complaint to James W. Denver, Commissioner of Indian Affairs. She was angered by white squatters who mistreated these native tribes by burning down their houses, ransacking their fields, and driving them off their land. White settlers had no legal claim to these lands, but they settled on them nevertheless. The New York Indian tribes--which consisted of the Seneca, Onodaga, Cayuga, Tuscarora, Oneida, St. Regis, Stockbridge, Munsee, and Brothertown nations--had been given land in Kansas Territory according to the treaty of 1838.


A memory of old Fort Harker

A memory of old Fort Harker
Creator: The Club Member
Date: February 1908
This reminiscence by Mrs. Henry Inman, published in The Club Member, describes her experiences as a Kansas pioneer. She moved to Fort Harker in January 1868 after a difficult journey in severe winter weather. She details various aspects of frontier life, including the U.S. military's conflicts with Native Americans and the daily struggle for survival. She also mentions how she met "Mother" Bickerdyke, and that her husband served in the Seventh Cavalry under General George Armstrong Custer.


Arrival of the Caravan at Santa Fe

Arrival of the Caravan at Santa Fe
Date: Between 1844 and 1845
This illustration from Josiah Gregg's Commerce on the Prairies depicts a caravan of Americans arriving in Santa Fe, New Mexico. The Santa Fe Trail, opened in 1821 by William Bucknell, served as a freight route and passed through Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Colorado, and New Mexico.


A story of the Shawanoes (Shawnee)

A story of the Shawanoes (Shawnee)
Creator: Rayner, John Allen
Date: 1886
This reminiscence by George Bluejacket, a Shawnee (Shawanoe) Indian originally from Ohio, tells the creation story of the Shawnee people as well as the history of his own tribe. Although his story ends before the Shawnee were relocated to Kansas (then called Indian Territory), it appears that he relocated with the rest of his tribe. The reminiscence was recorded by John Allen Rayner, and the first page of the document is an explanatory letter written by Rayner.


Bark house, Kickapoo Reservation

Bark house, Kickapoo Reservation
Creator: Parkman, Mary
Date: 1935
This photograph, taken in 1935 as part of the New Deal Federal Indian program, depicts a bark house on the Kickapoo Reservation in northeast Kansas. This was the home of Marie Pewamo, who is presumably the woman standing out front. This style of house had been used since the nineteenth century by both the Kickapoo and Pottawatomi tribes.


Bennett C. Riley

Bennett C. Riley
Date: 1880s
This photograph shows a portrait of Bennett Riley that was probably commissioned by his family in the 1880s. Riley died June 9, 1853. The portrait has resided at the U.S. Cavalry Museum at Fort Riley, Kansas, since about 1903. Bennett Riley, after whom Fort Riley was named, had a long and prestigious career in the U. S. military. Born in Virginia in 1787, he entered the army in 1813. In 1829 he commanded the first military escort on the Santa Fe Trail. In that same year, he succeeded Colonel Henry Leavenworth as commander of Fort Leavenworth. In 1847 he became a brigadier general. He also served during the Mexican War and, in 1848, he served as the last territorial governor of California, where he helped create their state constitution.


Black Hawk, Sauk Indian

Black Hawk, Sauk Indian
Creator: Catlin, George, 1796-1872
Date: 1832
This portrait, painted by the well-known artist George Catlin, depicts the fierce leader of the Sauk and Fox tribe after his arrest in 1832. Black Hawk and some of his tribe had resisted their removal to lands west of the Mississippi River, but the Black Hawk War, as it came to be known, ended in defeat. The original of this portrait is on exhibit at the National Portrait Gallery, which is part of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.


Chronology of the Iowa and Sac and Fox Indians in Doniphan County, Kansas

Chronology of the Iowa and Sac and Fox Indians in Doniphan County, Kansas
Date: 1882
This chronology details major events occurring between 1837-1855 among the Iowa and Sac and Fox Indians who had been relocated to Kansas after the Indian Removal Act of 1830. Topics mentioned within the chronology include warfare among relocated tribes, the arrival of white emigrants, disease, mission buildings, and treaties ceding land to the United States government.


Council meeting at Kickapoo Agency

Council meeting at Kickapoo Agency
Creator: Baldwin, Royal
Date: 1857
This is a transcribed copy of a conversation between Keotuck and his fellow Potawatomi leaders and their Indian agent, Royal Baldwin. The Potawatomi and Kickapoo had been living on the same lands, and since they had just planted their crops, the Potawatomi were expressing their desire to remain settled on this land. Apparently the United States government had not given the Potawatomi their full annuity payment and had asked them to move, but Keotuck's band protested because they had paid 8,009 dollars to remain with the Kickapoo. The back of the document includes a transcription of the compact joining the Kickapoo and Potawatomi, written in 1851.


Covered wagons, Manhattan, Kansas

Covered wagons, Manhattan, Kansas
Date: 1910
This photograph, taken by an unknown photographer in 1860, shows a train of covered wagons, oxen, and men on horseback setting out from Manhattan, Kansas. These wagons were a common form of transportation on the plains.


Delaware Indians to T. Hartley Crawford

Delaware Indians to T. Hartley Crawford
Creator: Delaware Indians
Date: January 6, 1840
This is a copy of a letter that Isaac McCoy sent on behalf of the Delaware Indians. McCoy was a missionary in Indian Territory (present-day Kansas), and Crawford was Commissioner of Indian Affairs. In the letter, the Delaware asked for government patents that would prove their ownership of their new lands in Indian Territory. Apparently, some of their lands had also been claimed by Kansa Indians. The Delaware refer in this letter to a treaty signed on September 24, 1829, and express their desire to be permanently settled in this new territory. However, the Delaware did not enjoy a permanent home in Kansas--treaties in 1854 and 1860 diminished Delaware lands and, in 1867, the Delaware were moved to present-day Oklahoma.


Eastman's map of Kansas and Nebraska territories showing the location of the Indian reserves according to the treaties of 1854

Eastman's map of Kansas and Nebraska territories showing the location of the Indian reserves according to the treaties of 1854
Date: Between 1854 and 1856
This map shows the locations of the new or reduced lands of Indian tribes according to the treaties of 1854. With the passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Act in 1854, the former Indian Territory was opened to white settlement, and the government looked for ways to relocate the native tribes who had made their homes in Kansas. To create more land for white settlement, George Manypenny, the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, negotiated treaties with Indian tribes that ceded much of the Indians' lands to the government. This land could then be sold to white emigrants. Naturally, these events helped to exacerbate existing tensions between settlers and Native Americans, contributing to the Indian Wars that occupied the U.S. Army during and after the American Civil War.


Fort Harker, Kansas

Fort Harker, Kansas
Creator: Gardner, Alexander, 1821-1882
Date: 1867
This stereograph shows U.S. Army troops on the grounds of Fort Harker, Kansas. The photo was taken 500 miles west of St. Louis, Missouri, in present day Kanopolis, Kansas. It is from Alexander Gardner's series, Across the Continent on the Union Pacific Railway, Eastern Division.


Fort Leavenworth, Kansas

Fort Leavenworth, Kansas
Date: 1864
This photograph of Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas, was taken in 1864 by an unidentified photographer. The building in the background is the guardhouse, and in the foreground is an African-American battery. This battery appears to be the precursor to the 9th and 10th Colored Regiments, formed in 1866.


Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, 309 miles west of St. Louis, Mo.

Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, 309 miles west of St. Louis, Mo.
Creator: Gardner, Alexander, 1821-1882
Date: 1867
This stereograph shows buildings and grounds at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, was taken in 1867 by Alexander Gardner, a protege of Civil War photographer Matthew Brady. During the Civil War, Gardner had become well-known for his portrayals of such battles as Antietam and Gettysburg. After the war, in 1867, he began working for the Union Pacific Railroad and consequently traveled through the state of Kansas. This image shows the fort from a distance. It is from Alexander Gardner's series, Across the Continent on the Union Pacific Railway, Eastern Division.


Fort Riley

Fort Riley
Date: Between 1860 and 1900
This north west view of Fort Riley, Kansas, depicts the post hospital and various other buildings. Ft. Riley was built in 1853 and was named after Major Bennett C. Riley, who had served on the first military escort on the Santa Fe Trail. Our catalog records estimate this photo was taken around 1860, but another credible source suggests the photograph dates sometime between 1887-1897, possibly 1896.


Fort Scott soldiers

Fort Scott soldiers
Date: 1863-1865
This photograph of two men on horses at Fort Scott was probably taken between 1863 and 1865. The man in the foreground is Corporal George Henry McCoon, company saddler in the 3rd Wisconsin Cavalry. The photograph shows the Fort Scott stables in the background. Corporal McCoon married in Fort Scott shortly after the Civil War, then relocated to Oregon and later to California.


General Order No. 1, 18th Kansas Cavalry

General Order No. 1, 18th Kansas Cavalry
Creator: Moore, Horace L. (Horace Ladd), 1837-1914
Date: July 17, 1867
This order for the 18th Kansas Cavalry, located at Fort Harker, regulates the maintenance of cavalry horses. Fort Harker was established to provide protection for the Kansas Stage Line and the military supply trains traveling the Smoky Hill Trail and the Fort Riley Road. As stated in the order, these regulations are essential because "the efficiency of every cavalry command depends much upon the condition of its horses."


General Order No. 2, 19th Kansas Cavalry

General Order No. 2, 19th Kansas Cavalry
Creator: Crawford, S. J. (Samuel Johnson), 1835-1913
Date: January 2, 1869
This order established the daily routine that must be observed by the cavalry forces located near Fort Cobb. This includes reveille (5:45am), calls for meals, and finally taps (8:25pm).


General Order No. 2, 19th Kansas Cavalry

General Order No. 2, 19th Kansas Cavalry
Date: October 29, 1868
This order establishes the 19th Kansas Cavalry at Camp Crawford, which was located outside Topeka, Kansas. This camp had been named after Samuel Crawford, the former governor of Kansas who took command of this cavalry regiment in 1868. It also laid out the regulations that must be obeyed by officers and enlisted men and established the daily routine (including the calls of reveille, meals, and taps) that must be observed by these soldiers. The 19th Kansas Cavalry was organized to fight against various Indian tribes in the Great Plains.


George L. Higby, Volunteer Enlistment in the 19th Kansas Cavalry

George L. Higby, Volunteer Enlistment in the 19th Kansas Cavalry
Creator: Kansas. Adjutant General's Office
Date: October 15, 1868
This volunteer enlistment form belonged to George L. Higby, who volunteered to serve in the 19th Kansas Cavalry, Company D, for the period of six months. The 19th Kansas Cavalry was organized in 1868 in order to fight native tribes in western Kansas and Indian Territory (present-day Oklahoma).


Gottlieb F. Oehler to Eli K. Price

Gottlieb F. Oehler to Eli K. Price
Creator: Oehler, Gottlieb
Date: July 11, 1859
Gottlieb F. Oehler, a Moravian missionary working with the Chippewa and Munsee Indians in Kansas Territory, wrote this letter to Eli Price regarding the mistreatment of Indians and whites' disrespectful attitudes toward Indian lands. Oehler was appalled that white squatters frequently settled on Indian land with no response from the federal government, who should have protected Indian land claims. While most white Americans agreed with the government's approach to removal, Oehler hoped that Price would speak out against federal policies and educate the public in the eastern United States about the treatment of Indians out west.


Group of four Sac and Fox chiefs

Group of four Sac and Fox chiefs
Date: Between 1860 and 1869
This formal photograph, taken in Washington, D.C. during the 1860s, depicts four Sac and Fox chiefs from Kansas. They are dressed in traditional Sac and Fox clothing. The photographer remains unidentified.


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