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A. Finch to Thaddeus Hyatt

A. Finch to Thaddeus Hyatt
Creator: Finch, H.
Date: December 22, 1856
This letter, written from Osawatomie by A. Finch to Thaddeus Hyatt, chairman of the National Kansas Committee, provided general information about the inhabitants of Osawatomie and neighboring areas. It included a list of about half of the settlers residing in Osawatomie at this time, including the four pro-slavery voters. Mr. Finch went into detail about the most fertile areas that would be excellent sites for free state settlements, and about the economic conditions and financial needs of the settlers.


A census of residents on Big Sugar Creek, Kansas Territory

A census of residents on Big Sugar Creek, Kansas Territory
Creator: Hyatt, Thaddeus
Date: 1857
This account identifies the names and origins of both free-state and pro-slavery settlers who lived on Big Sugar Creek, Kansas Territory. The account, presumably collected by Thaddeus Hyatt or some other member of the National Kansas Committee, begins with a brief description of the area, and mentions particular cases of settlers who had noteworthy experiences. Of the 25 pro-slavery residents identified, only two owned slaves.


Albert D. Searl to Thaddeus Hyatt

Albert D. Searl to Thaddeus Hyatt
Creator: Searl, Albert D
Date: August 21, 1856
The author wrote from Tabor, Iowa to Thaddeus Hyatt, president of the National Kansas Committee. He began the letter by mentioning a skirmish between pro-slavery and free state forces somewhere between Lawrence and Topeka. This correspondence also deals with emigrant settlements within the territory, the shipment of weapons and provisions, and the morale among the emigrants as they struggled to make ends meet. Furthermore, Searl mentioned a great deal about James Lane and his activities within Kansas Territory.


Amos Adams Lawrence to John Brown

Amos Adams Lawrence to John Brown
Creator: Lawrence, Amos Adams
Date: February 19, 1857
Amos Lawrence, Boston, sent John Brown $70 which had been donated by the people of East Jaffrey, New Hampshire, for Brown's "own personal use, & not for the cause in any other way than that. Lawrence did not believe Brown would receive much financial support from the National Kansas Committee: "the old managers have not inspired confidence, & therefore money will be hard for them to get now & hereafter."


Appeal for support of Free Kansas

Appeal for support of Free Kansas
Creator: Kansas State Central Committee
Date: October 20, 1856
This handwritten "appeal" was sent to all those who had supported, or who might be inclined to support, the free state cause in Kansas Territory. The appeal assures them that the committee in Kansas had reached full accord with the National Kansas Committee and could be "relied upon" to distribute aid channeled through Chicago. "Our people are still in extreme want, and hundreds of families are entirely dependent upon your charities."


Barstow Darrach to Samuel L. Adair

Barstow Darrach to Samuel L. Adair
Creator: Darrach, Barstow
Date: November 27, 1856
Dr. Barstow Darrach had returned to New York Hospital after being in Kansas Territory. He wrote that he felt the prospects were not very favorable for Kansas Territory. He had found "some warm friends disposed to yield Kansas to the slave power rather than resort to a revolution," and he believed [President] Buchanan would only pretend to support freedom "until the south can make sure of their prize." Darrach felt it would take a large emigration of settlers to Kansas to make it a free state, and that free state settlers would be thwarted by the "bogus authority" and "another mob from Mo." should the Free State party appear at the polls. He stated that "the strongest argument [against success] that I see is that the people do not seem prepared." He wrote that he would ship clothing, flannel cloth, and blankets to Adair by way of W. F. M. Arny in Chicago.


C. W. Holder to James Blood

C. W. Holder to James Blood
Creator: Holder, C. W.
Date: October 27, 1860
As were several other individuals from Illinois, Holder writes to notify Blood that the people in his community (around Bloomington, Illinois) are eager to share their "abundance" with "their brethren in Kansas." They are preparing to send potatoes, as well as wheat and oats, but need help purchasing sacks and paying freight; "our people as you are probably aware are just recovering from the financial pressure of the past 3 years" and thus had "little money."


Clarina Irene Howard Nichols, receipt

Clarina Irene Howard Nichols, receipt
Creator: Nichols, Clarinda I. Howard
Date: December 6, 1856
This receipt, given to Clarina Nichols by her audience in Naples, New York, declares that the thirty-six dollars she received after her speaking engagement was for Thaddeus Hyatt, president of the National Kansas Committee. Nichols had been giving lectures on the free state cause as an agent of this emigrant aid company.


Clarina Irene Howard Nichols to Thaddeus Hyatt

Clarina Irene Howard Nichols to Thaddeus Hyatt
Creator: Nichols, Clarinda I. Howard
Date: October 15, 1856
This brief letter, written by Clarina Nichols from Elmira, New York, informed Thaddeus Hyatt of her successful speaking tour in Pennsylvania. She was also eager to hear more details about the National Kansas Committee's work in the territory.


Francis Tomes and Sons to Thaddeus Hyatt, receipts

Francis Tomes and Sons to Thaddeus Hyatt, receipts
Date: August 22, 1856 - August 23, 1856
These two receipts, from Francis Tomes and Sons, New York, detail supplies acquired to benefit the free state cause. They include the prices of Bowie knives, Colt pistols, and other pieces pertaining to the use of firearms.


George Luther Stearns

George Luther Stearns
Creator: Pach Brothers
Date: Between 1860 and 1865
George Luther Stearns lived in Boston, Massachusetts, and was a supporter of the free state cause. He was a member of the National Kansas Committee and president of the Massachusetts State Kansas Committee. He donated money to the antislavery cause, helped raise funds and arms, and lent his support to abolitionist John Brown for the raid on Harpers Ferry, Virginia.


H. B. Hurd to James Blood

H. B. Hurd to James Blood
Creator: Hurd, H. B.
Date: March 27, 1861
From Chicago, Illinois, H. B. Hurd inquires about reports that the Kansas legislature was to appoint a committee to investigate the conduct of the National Kansas Committee's agents and their handling of relief funds and supplies. Several correspondents had expressed similar concerns during the fall of 1860--that is, concern that funds were being misused or that certain agents could not be trusted. Hurd encourages Blood to support such an investigation.


H. B. Hurd to Thomas W. Higginson

H. B. Hurd to Thomas W. Higginson
Creator: Hurd, H. B.
Date: November 14, 1856
H. B. Hurd was secretary of the National Kansas Committee in Chicago, Illinois. He writes this letter to Reverend Thomas W. Higginson in Worcester, Massachusetts, from the committee's office in Chicago. The main focus of the letter revolves around Higginson's plan of operation to garner support from free state governors. Hurd offers advice about which governors to approach first, also stating his opinion on various related matters. Included in the letter is another sheet, outlining Higginson's "Points to be suggested to the Executives of the States." The back of this sheet has some other notes and doodling.


Hiram Hill to S. G. How

Hiram Hill to S. G. How
Creator: Hill, Hiram, 1804-
Date: July 26, 1856
Hiram Hill wrote from Williamsburgh, Massachusetts, to S. G. How, of the "Kansas Committee for Receiving and Dispersing" funds. Hill inquired how and in what manner any money sent to Kansas would be applied: "I have some money in my hand and we can rais [sic] more if we can have any prospect of its getting to Kansas and doing any good".


Horace White to John Brown

Horace White to John Brown
Creator: White, Horace
Date: February 18, 1857
On National Kansas Committee letterhead, assistant secretary Horace White wrote Brown from Chicago to say that the items Brown had requested were being gathered and shipped.


J. D. Webster to James Blood

J. D. Webster to James Blood
Creator: Webster, J. D.
Date: October 10, 1856
From Chicago, Illinois, headquarters of the National Kansas Committee, the committee's vice president writes to authorize James Blood to draw on the treasurer for $3,000 "to be expended under authority of the State Kansas Committee." The purpose is to offer "provisions" to needy free state settlers; this was to be the committee's focus, "rather than to aid emigrants to go there."


James M. Winchell to Thaddeus Hyatt

James M. Winchell to Thaddeus Hyatt
Creator: Winchell, James M
Date: September 20, 1856
James M. Winchell wrote from Burlington to Thaddeus Hyatt, president of the National Kansas Committee, regarding an emigrant train of 500 settlers heading south from Iowa City. The author intended to travel to speak with Governor Geary before he met up with the emigrants. Winchell also included in this letter a private insert pertaining to the unscrupulous dealings of a Kansas politician named Dr. Root.


James W. Randall to Thaddeus Hyatt

James W. Randall to Thaddeus Hyatt
Creator: Randall, James W.
Date: September 12, 1860
In this letter, James Randall of Emporia, Kansas, informed Thaddeus Hyatt, president of the National Kansas Committee, of the drought's effect on the neighboring population. Many families were destitute after the failure of the corn crop and were considering leaving their homes altogether. Randall hoped that Hyatt could send aid to the starving settlers.


John Brown to J. T. Cox

John Brown to J. T. Cox
Creator: Brown, John, 1800-1859
Date: October 7, 1858
In this letter dated October 7, 1858, Ottumwa, John Brown again signs himself as an agent of the National Kansas Committee and claims to have the authority to receive from Cox any money or notes, etc., received from the Committee that he might have in his possession. Brown, of course, was continuing to tap all available sources for the financing of his operations, but not every one connected with the NKC would be supportive of these particular efforts.


Joseph Pomeroy Root

Joseph Pomeroy Root
Creator: Langhorne, photographer
Joseph Pomeroy Root was a resident of Wyandotte, Kansas Territory. He was involved in the free state cause, including recruiting members of the Kansas Volunteers for the Protection of the Ballot Box and working for the National Kansas Committee. He served as the first Lieutenant Governor of the state of Kansas.


Kansas--Help! Help!

Kansas--Help! Help!
Creator: Lawrence Citizen
Date: August 13, 1856
This circular was composed of two parts. The first section was a letter written from Lawrence, Kansas Territory, to the National Kansas Committee, that asked for help because of the conflict in Kansas, stating that "instant action alone can save our people from destruction." The letter briefly mentioned the recent attack on Lawrence, and the proslavery forces which were gathering and organizing. Although there was a lull in the fighting, the citizens of Lawrence were looking for assistance and relief. The second part was a response written by H. B. Hurd, secretary of the National Kansas Committee, encouraging emigration to Kansas but raising the possibility that free state settlers in the territory must at times defend their rights. He wrote that "Kansas is now in a state of open war."


Peter Page to Thaddeus Hyatt

Peter Page to Thaddeus Hyatt
Creator: Page, Peter
Date: July 6, 1856
Peter Page wrote from Chicago, Illinois to Thaddeus Hyatt, president of the National Kansas Committee, concerning the shipment of relief to free-state settlers in Kansas Territory and the emigration of settlers into Kansas. The author wrote a lengthy account of the committee's frustrated attempts to arrange suitable transportation into the territory, since the water route on the Missouri River was unsafe due to persistent harassment from border ruffians.


Letters from Thaddeus Hyatt. The Drouth in Kansas universal! The last crop gone! No buckwheat! No vegetables! No corn! No seed of any kind! No bread! No money! No Hope! What is to be done? (No. 3)

Letters from Thaddeus Hyatt. The Drouth in Kansas universal! The last crop gone! No buckwheat! No vegetables! No corn! No seed of any kind! No bread! No money! No Hope! What is to be done? (No. 3)
Date: September 14, 1860
Thaddeus Hyatt, president of the National Kansas Committee, writes to the "New York Tribune" to make New Englanders aware of the destitution and suffering of settlers in Kansas Territory. Hyatt gives accounts of conditions in Americus and Emporia townships in Breckenridge County and also in Jackson County and Lawrence. The letter reports the condition of crops, cattle disease, etc. It contains similar information to other statements made by Kansas settlers during the drought of 1860.


Marais des Cygnes census report

Marais des Cygnes census report
Date: 1857
This census report lists the total number of residents along the Marais des Cygnes River, commencing at the state line, including free state residents, proslavery residents, and free state residents "in distress." It also contains brief accounts of specific individuals and information about the surrounding area, such as the availability of land claims.


National Kansas Committee, Contributors List

National Kansas Committee, Contributors List
Creator: Brown, John, 1800-1859
Date: September 29, 1858
This list of "notes received for seeds" distributed by R. H. Waterman "under the direction of E. B. Whitman" is signed "John Brown Agt Nat. Kan. Com.," September 29, 1858. The notes were, according to Brown, given to him "in past payment or security on account."


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