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1880 census of Farmer Township, Wabaunsee County, Kansas

1880 census of Farmer Township, Wabaunsee County, Kansas
Creator: United States. Census Office. 10th census, 1880
Date: June 1, 1880 through June 2, 1880
This excerpt of a census schedule provides details--including the name, age, race, and occupation--of settlers in Farmer Township in Wabaunsee County, Kansas. The county included a black population (B=Black) who had settled there in 1879 with the help of the Freedmen's Relief Association.


1880 census of Nicodemus Township, Graham County, Kansas

1880 census of Nicodemus Township, Graham County, Kansas
Creator: United States. Census Office. 10th census, 1880
Date: June 8, 1880 through June 23, 1880
This census schedule provides details--including the name, age, race, and occupation--of both white and black settlers in Nicodemus Township in Graham County, Kansas. This township had been settled by African Americans in 1877 along the south fork of the Solomon River.


1880 census of Rock Creek Township, Wabaunsee County, Kansas

1880 census of Rock Creek Township, Wabaunsee County, Kansas
Creator: United States. Census Office. 10th census, 1880
Date: June 11, 1880
This excerpt of a census schedule provides details--including the name, age, race, and occupation--of settlers in Rock Creek Township in Wabaunsee County, Kansas. The county included a black population (B=Black) who had settled there in 1879 with the help of the Freedmen's Relief Association.


A. W. Johnson and Isabella Johnson to Robert S. Wickizer

A. W. Johnson and Isabella Johnson to Robert S. Wickizer
Creator: Johnson, A. W.
Date: March 24, 1875
In this letter to his cousin, A. W. Johnson relates news from his homestead near Osage Mission, Neosho County. Johnson describes the grasshopper plague in vivid terms, and also mentions how the recent hard times in Kansas should not discourage emigration into the state. In fact, he goes so far as to state that now is the time to come, since land is cheap and the spring weather is "deliteful[sic]." Johnson also states, however, that the price of corn is high, and that high prices on goods make it difficult for him to support his family.


About Nicodemus, The Daily Journal

About Nicodemus, The Daily Journal
Creator: Lawrence Daily Journal
Date: April 30, 1879
This article from the Lawrence Daily Journal discusses a newspaper article from the Chicago Tribune written during the Exoduster Movement in 1879 providing a brief history of the black community of freed people at Nicodemus, Kansas settled in 1877. Nicodemus is now a historic site administered by the National Parks Service.


Action of Other Cities on the 'Exodus' Question

Action of Other Cities on the 'Exodus' Question
Creator: Wyandotte Gazette
Date: April 25, 1879
This article includes information about Exoduster relief efforts in both Topeka and Lawrence. In Topeka, the Kansas Freedmen's Aid Association had appealed to other counties, asking them to form local aid societies to assist refugees in their respective areas. Lawrence citizens held a meeting in Fraser Hall to discuss the Exodus; the attendees recognized the legitimacy of the Exodus and were willing to provide aid and support for the emigrants.


Ada McColl gathering buffalo chips near Lakin, Kansas

Ada McColl gathering buffalo chips near Lakin, Kansas
Creator: McColl, Polly
Date: 1893
In this photograph, pioneer Ada McColl of Kearny County collects buffalo chips. In areas of western Kansas where trees were scarce, these chips were a convenient (and plentiful) source of fuel. This is an abridged version of an original photograph including Ada's brother Burt. The photograph was taken by Polly McColl, Ada's mother. For more information on this photograph, see the link to Reflections (Summer 2008) below.


Affidavit of John Smith

Affidavit of John Smith
Creator: United States. Congress. Senate
Date: January 15, 1865
This affidavit given by John Smith, an interpreter for the United States military, was presented to the military commission investigating the massacre of Cheyenne Indians at Sand Creek, Colorado, in 1864. Smith's account focuses primary on the events prior to the massacre, including the attitudes of the Cheyenne leaders One Eye and Black Kettle. The affidavit is part of a larger report containing evidence obtained at this hearing, titled Report of the Secretary of War, Communicating, In compliance with a resolution of the Senate of February 4, 1867, a copy of the evidence taken at Denver and Fort Lyon, Colorado Territory, by a military commission, ordered to inquire into the Sand Creek massacre, November, 1864.


Affidavits of colored men, in report and testimony of the select committee to investigate the causes of the removal of the Negroes from the southern states to the northern states, in three parts

Affidavits of colored men, in report and testimony of the select committee to investigate the causes of the removal of the Negroes from the southern states to the northern states, in three parts
Creator: United States. Congress. Senate. Select Committee on Negro Exodus
Date: 1880
The Senate select committee charged with investigating the causes of the Exodus included this list of sworn affidavits in their report. The affidavits are given by ten black men and one black woman who outlined their treatment while living in Louisiana. Each affidavit includes their full name and parish (county) of residence. Although this source does not directly refer to Kansas, many Exodusters who came to Kansas during the post-Civil War period came from Louisiana.


A lesson of the exodus

A lesson of the exodus
Creator: Topeka Daily Capital
Date: April 23, 1879
This article discusses what lessons may be learned from the black exodus out of the South. The unnamed author maintains that Southerners will realize their dependence upon black labor. Furthermore, Northerners will be encouraged to see that they must continue what they began during the Civil War and that they cannot let white Southerners rule the country.


All colored people that want to go to Kansas

All colored people that want to go to Kansas
Creator: Nicodemus Town Company
Date: 1877
This broadside advertises the availability of land in Nicodemus, Graham County, Kansas encouraging African-American immigration to Kansas. As noted on the poster, some African-American residents of Lexington, Kentucky, were moving to Nicodemus and consolidating themselves with the Nicodemus Town Company. Nicodemus was settled in 1877, and is the only surviving all-black settlement west of the Mississippi that was settled by former slaves during the post-Civil War Reconstruction period. It is now a historic site administered by the National Parks Service.


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.


An appeal for help in behalf of the colored refugees in Kansas

An appeal for help in behalf of the colored refugees in Kansas
Creator: Rust, Horatio Nelson, 1828-1906
Date: January 22, 1881
This flyer, distributed by the Southern Refugee Relief Association of Chicago, Illinois, describes the dire situation of the African-American refugees relocated in Kansas. The secretary of this association, Horatio N. Rust, had taken this opportunity to pass along information relayed to him by Elizabeth Comstock, an aid worker in Topeka. Comstock was thankful for the donations of food and other goods, but asked for more assistance in feeding, clothing, and sheltering these refugees. The flyer also includes short excerpts of letters by agents of the refugee association who had direct knowledge of the emigrants' situation.


Andrew Atchison to John P. St. John

Andrew Atchison to John P. St. John
Creator: Atchison, Andrew
Date: August 22, 1881
In this letter, Andrew Atchison updates Kansas governor St. John on the condition of the Exoduster settlement near Dunlap, Kansas. Benjamin Singleton had established this colony in May, 1878, and according to Atchison, the black refugees (numbering around 200 families) were thriving. Another goal of Atchison's letter was to investigate the "practicability" of establishing a Business and Literary Academy in addition to their free public school. Atchison and some other white residents of the area had formed the Dunlap Aid Association to assist the Exodusters' efforts to obtain land and employment.


Appeal for the Kansas sufferers!

Appeal for the Kansas sufferers!
Creator: Foster, Daniel, 1816-1864
Date: 1860
This pamphlet, written by Daniel Foster, general agent of the New England Kansas Relief Committee, attempts to dispel any doubts about the severity of the nine-month drought in Kansas Territory. Many settlers had left Kansas Territory, and those remaining needed relief. Foster calls on people to provide aid to those in Kansas by contributing money or goods. The pamphlet lists names of people serving on a Boston committee who had met to discuss relief efforts in Kansas, including such well-known individuals as John A. Andrew, George Luther Stearns, Samuel Gridley Howe, and Thomas H. Webb.


Articles of Corporation and By-Laws of the Kansas Freedmen's Relief Association

Articles of Corporation and By-Laws of the Kansas Freedmen's Relief Association
Creator: Kansas Freedmen's Relief Association (Topeka, Kan.)
Date: 1879
This pocket-sized booklet contains the articles of incorporation and by-laws of the Kansas Freedmen's Relief Association that assisted Southern blacks emigrating to Kansas influencing the Exoduster Movement of 1879. In addition, the booklet includes a listing of the Board of Directors and officers where Governor John P. St. John served as its president.


Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railroad. Land department

Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railroad. Land department
Creator: Railway Directory and Advertiser
Date: 1872
This advertisement promotes the sale of 100,000 acres of land along the line of the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railroad. According to the ad, these lands have fertile soil and "considerable timber," and are in such high demand that white immigrants are flooding the area.


Benjamin "Pap" Singleton

Benjamin "Pap" Singleton
Date: 1880
Benjamin "Pap" Singleton was born a slave in Nashville, Tennessee, in 1809. Singleton escaped to Canada to gain his freedom, returning to Tennessee after the end of the Civil War. Seeking a better life for himself and for his fellow emancipated African Americans, he began his efforts to buy land in Tennessee for blacks to farm. His plan failed due to unfair prices set by white landowners. Singleton then looked to Kansas as a potential site for black emigration, organizing the Tennessee Real Estate and Homestead Association with his business partner, Columbus Johnson. This company founded the Dunlap Colony in Morris County and a short-lived settlement in Cherokee County. Although his company did not create many successful colonies, through his advertisements he did help thousands of Exodusters relocate to Kansas, leading to his name as "Father of the Exodus." Singleton also organized a political group called the United Colored Links and later in life he promoted black colonization.


Benjamin "Pap" Singleton and S. A. McClure

Benjamin "Pap" Singleton and S. A. McClure
Date: 1876
This photograph depicts a steamboat containing freed people in Nashville, Tennessee, with Benjamin "Pap" Singleton and S. A. McClure superimposed in the foreground. Singleton, known as the "Father of the Exodus" for the Exoduster Movement in 1879, organized the Tennessee Real Estate and Homestead Association to facilitate black emigration from the South. His town company founded the Dunlap Colony in Morris County, and a short-lived settlement in Cherokee County, Kansas. His widespread use of advertisements encouraged thousands of former slaves to emigrate to Kansas. McClure was one of his associates and advocate for emigration.


Buffalo hunt

Buffalo hunt
Date: 1869
This photograph depicts a buffalo hunt along the Big Timber River, located in Ellis County south of Hays, Kansas. Some more well-known members of the hunting party include General George Armstrong Custer, Hill P. Wilson, Captain Tom Custer, and General Samuel D. Sturgis.


Burning the Cheyenne village near Fort Larned, Kansas

Burning the Cheyenne village near Fort Larned, Kansas
Creator: Davis, Theodore R.
Date: April 19, 1867
This illustration portrays soldiers under the command of General Winfield S. Hancock burning a Cheyenne village on Pawnee Fork, thirty miles west of Fort Larned. The illustration was drawn by Theodore Davis and published in Harpers Weekly, April 19, 1867.


Captain Lewis Hanback's final report

Captain Lewis Hanback's final report
Creator: Hanback, Lewis
Date: 1875
This document is Captain Lewis Hanback's final report of an 1875 investigation into a conflict between Captain Ricker's company of state militia and a band of Osage Indians that occurred in 1874. The Osage Indians had filed a complaint with the Department of the Interior, claiming that the U. S. military had attacked a peaceful Indian encampment and stolen their horses and other property. Captain Lewis Hanback was ordered to take down testimonies and determine the circumstances surrounding the conflict. This final report summarizes these testimonies and includes a short history of Barbour County where the altercation took place.


Certificate of Incorporation for the Singleton colony

Certificate of Incorporation for the Singleton colony
Creator: Singleton Town Company
Date: June 24, 1879
This certificate of incorporation laid out the details of the Singleton Colony's town company, including its purpose, term of duration, and number of directors. The document was signed by Benjamin Singleton, William Sizemore, A. D. DeFrantz, Fuel Williamson, George Wade, George Moon, John Elliott, Austin Dozier, John Davis, William Shrout, and John Wade. It was also notarized by Thomas Archer and certified by James Smith, Kansas Secretary of State.


Charles M. F. Striger to Governor John P. St. John

Charles M. F. Striger to Governor John P. St. John
Creator: Striger, Charles M. F.
Date: May 18, 1879
In this letter Charles Striger, a radical Republican from Kentucky, expresses his concern for free blacks in the South. With rather forceful language he berates Southern Democrats for their harassment of blacks. He also asks Gov. St. John to convince the North that it is their duty to aid any refugees seeking solace from Southern white oppression.


Cheyenne prisoners in Dodge City

Cheyenne prisoners in Dodge City
Date: April 30, 1879
This stereograph shows a group of Cheyenne prisoners seated on the Ford County courthouse steps in Dodge City, Kansas. These men had taken part in "the last Indian raid in Kansas," when around 350 Cheyenne, led by Dull Knife, had killed around 40 white settlers in western Kansas. These Indians were fleeing from their reservation in Indian Territory (present-day Oklahoma) and heading toward their former lands in the northern Great Plains (Kansas, Nebraska, etc.). Several of these Cheyenne men were apprehended and put on trial for murder. They were eventually acquitted of all charges. The individuals in the image are identified as follows: 1) Wakabish; 2) Maniton; 3) Old Cow; 4) Left Hand; 5) Wild Hog; 6) Old Man; 7) Muskekan; 8) George Reynolds; and 9) Franklin G. Adams.


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