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Battle of the Blue

Battle of the Blue
Creator: Mileham, Benjamin D.
Date: 1896
This painting depicts the Battle of Byram's Ford (a.k.a. Battle of the Big Blue), which took place on October 22, 1864, in Jackson County, Missouri. During the battle, the 2nd Regiment of the Kansas State Militia, which was aided by the Topeka Battery of Artillery, fought the Confederate forces of Sterling Price. Captain Ross Burns commanded that artillery battery. Ross may have commissioned artist Benjamin Mileham to execute this painting. Mrs. Ross Burns later donated it the Shawnee County Commissioners and the Grand Army of Republic in memory of her then deceased husband.


B.F. Dawson to Colonel of the Second Kansas militia

B.F. Dawson to Colonel of the Second Kansas militia
Creator: Dawson, B.F.
Date: Between 1865 and 1866
This letter is from B.F. Dawson to the Colonel of the Second Kansas Militia, in Topeka, Kansas. The letter contains Dawson's recollections of the Battle of the Blue, which happened on October 22, 1864, in Jackson County, Missouri. Dawson wrote the letter in Topeka, Kansas.


Candle lantern

Candle lantern
Date: between 1800 and 1850
This is a pressed and pierced tin candle lantern. Half-round lantern has clear glass pane beneath pierced conical top. Hinged metal door with snap latch opens to reveal candle socket on interior. Hiram C. Coville brought this lantern to Kansas Territory from Ohio. The Covilles were early settlers, landing first in Lawrence and quickly moving west to the Topeka area in 1855. Hiram was a soldier in the 2nd Kansas Militia, Company B, when he was killed during the Price Raid in 1864. His son, Allen, also used the lantern on the farm in Shawnee County.


G.W. Veale to General George W. Dietzler

G.W. Veale to General George W. Dietzler
Creator: Veale, George Washington, 1833-1916
Date: October 30, 1864
This letter is from G.W. Veale to General George W. Dietzler, Commander of the Kansas State Militia. Veale, who was colonel of the Second Kansas Militia, recounts his role and his regiments, in the Battle of the Blue. He wrote the letter from the headquarters of the 2nd Regiment, Kansas State Militia, in Topeka, Kansas.


James L. McDowell correspondence

James L. McDowell correspondence
Date: 1860-1892
This item contains letters to James L. McDowell. Correspondents include Edmund G. Ross, Alexander Caldwell, Thomas Carney, Senator Preston Plumb, General Thomas Ewing, members and staff of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, individuals working for the Kansas State Fair Association, staff of the Department of the Interior - General Land Office, and others. The letters from Thomas Carney focus on topics such as the Fugitive Slave Law, the Kansas militia, and Missouri border trouble. McDowell held a number of public positions in his lifetime, from notary public to city mayor to U.S. Marshal and major-general of the Kansas militia (including organizing to defend the state during Price's Raid in 1864) to postmaster for Leavenworth. He was also actively interested in agriculture, helping to organize the first and later state fairs for Kansas.


John Brown, Jr., correspondence

John Brown, Jr., correspondence
Creator: Brown, John, 1821-1895
Date: February 14, 1861-November 29, 1863
John Brown, Jr., wrote these letters to his wife Wealthy Brown during the early years of the Civil War. He enlisted and served as a Captain of Company K, 1st Kansas Cavalry (later the 7th Kansas Cavalry). Colonel Charles Jennison headed this regiment. It appears his wife and son John were living in Ohio, probably Ashtabula. The letters start while Brown is on a recruiting trip in Canada and Michigan. Many of the letters in January 1862 are written from Camp Jackson and Camp Johnson near Morristown, Cass County, Missouri. Brown's letters from February and March 1862 were written from Humboldt, Allen County, Kansas. Brown writes from Camp Wendell Phillips near Lawrence from most of April and May 1862. The last few letters are written from Madison, Indiana, on his way home to Ohio. The letters are very descriptive of camp life and names of many of the men in his company are mentioned. Several letters mention associates of his father's such as William Partridge and Richard Hinton. Almost every letter mentions how much he misses his family. Native American scouts are also mentioned by Brown as valuable to the war effort. Brown discusses the problems of determining local residents loyalty in the war on the Kansas Missouri border in his letter written January 21, 1862. In the letter dated January 26, 1862, and continued on the 27th, Brown writes that he sent ten black soldiers to save a slave mother and children whose owner was planning to take them further south. In his letter dated March 9, 1862, Brown describes the execution of a soldier named Driscol from Company H who stabbed another soldier, was court martialed, and shot. Brown sent a letter of resignation, because of his continued poor health, to Gen. James Blunt in May 1862. NOTES ABOUT THE IMAGES: Brown frequently made notes in the margins. To make it easier to read these images, the pages with these notes are included twice--first with the original orientation and then again rotated ninety degrees to aid in reading the note. A letter from Hannibal, Missouri, is dated December 7, 1861, but the content of this latter and subsequent letters makes it apparent that this letter was written sometime in January 1862 but before the letter dated January 11, 1862. The images for this letter are placed in the correct order for content but will seem out of order chronologically based on date. The last letter in the group is missing its first page however the content, about primarily family matters, makes it apparent it was written in late 1861 or early 1862. The text version is one file that presents the letters in chronological order, except for the the exceptions noted above. It is necessary to scroll to the appropriate date. SEVERAL PAGES IN VARIOUS LETTERS ARE WRITTEN IN A NUMERIC CODE. This code, between John Brown Jr. and his wife, encrypt private messages between the couple. A key to the code and transcriptions of the coded letters can be found filed with the original letters. The code key and transcriptions are available at the repository upon request. Access is restricted to these particular letters; researchers under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian, or provide written permission from same, to see those transcriptions.


Kansas Adjutant General general correspondence

Kansas Adjutant General general correspondence
Creator: Kansas. Adjutant General's Office
Date: 1863
This item is correspondence of the Kansas Adjutant General's Office under Charles Chadwick (1862-1863) and Guilford Dudley (1863-1864), including special orders issued by Governor Thomas Carney to Samuel N. Wood of the Morris County Rangers to detain any organized bands of guerillas near Council Grove and William P. Dutton to equip his company in Miami County. Several letters were received from John B. Gray, Missouri Adjutant General, inquiring about Missouri men that had enlisted in the Kansas militia. Most of the correspondence consists of requests for muster rolls, arms, resignations, and commissions. Other notable correspondents include Stephen A. Cobb and Sidney Clarke. A searchable, full-text version of this correspondence is available by clicking "Text Version" below.


Muster Roll of Captain Thomas Archer, Company D, Colored Troops

Muster Roll of Captain Thomas Archer, Company D, Colored Troops
Date: October 12, 1864-October 26, 1864
Muster Roll of Captain Thomas Archer, Company D Colored, Troops Irregular Service from October 12, 1864 to October 26, 1864. The muster roll contains soldiers' names, the dates joined, dates ordered to active service, dates relieved from duty, and the number of days in actual service. In the fall of 1864, Confederate General Sterling Price led 12,000 cavalry soldiers through Missouri and Kansas. In response, Kansas Governor Thomas Carney called for the State Militia to take up arms. On October 10, Major General Samuel R. Curtis issued General Order No. 54, which declared martial law and directed all white and black men between the ages of 18 and 60 years to gather arms and serve in temporary military service. Captain Archer's Company D Coloured troop consisted of black citizens from Topeka and it was attached to the 2nd Regiment and fought at the Battle of Little Blue River on October 21, 1864, in Jackson County, Missouri.


Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 1

Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 1
Creator: Kansas. Adjutant General's Office
Date: 1861-1864
These are Civil War muster rolls for the Kansas State Militia. The troops listed in this volume saw action during Price's Raid in October 1864. The lists may include name, rank, age, when and where the person mustered in, and remarks. For a list of this volume's contents, click on the Text Version button below.


Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 10

Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 10
Creator: Kansas. Adjutant General's Office
Date: 1864
These are Civil War muster rolls for the Kansas State Militia. The troops listed in this volume saw action during Price's Raid in October 1864. The lists may include name, rank, age, when and where the person mustered in, and remarks. For a list of this volume's contents, click on the Text Version button below.


Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 11

Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 11
Creator: Kansas. Adjutant General's Office
Date: 1861-1864
The muster rolls for the Kansas State Militia. These troops saw action from 1861-1864. The rolls may include name, rank, age, when and where they mustered in, and remarks. For a list of this volume's contents, click on the Text Version button below.


Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 12

Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 12
Creator: Kansas. Adjutant General's Office
Date: 1861-1864
These are Civil War muster rolls for the Kansas State Militia. The troops listed in this volume saw action during 1863. The lists may include name, rank, age, when and where the person mustered in, and remarks. For a list of this volume's contents, click on the Text Version button below.


Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 13

Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 13
Creator: Kansas. Adjutant General's Office
Date: 1863-1864
These are Civil War muster rolls for the Kansas State Militia. The troops listed in this volume saw action from 1863 through 1864. The lists may include name, rank, age, when and where the person mustered in, and remarks. For a list of this volume's contents, click on the Text Version button below.


Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 14

Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 14
Creator: Kansas. Adjutant General's Office
Date: 1863-1864
These are Civil War muster rolls for the Kansas State Militia. The troops listed in this volume saw action from 1863 through 1864. The lists may include name, rank, age, when and where the person mustered in, and remarks. For a list of this volume's contents, click on the Text Version button below.


Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 15

Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 15
Creator: Kansas. Adjutant General's Office
Date: 1863-1864
These are Civil War muster rolls for the Kansas State Militia. The troops listed in this volume saw action from 1863 through 1864. The lists may include name, rank, age, when and where the person mustered in, and remarks. For a list of this volume's contents, click on the Text Version button below.


Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 2

Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 2
Creator: Kansas. Adjutant General's Office
Date: 1864
These are Civil War muster rolls for the Kansas State Militia. The troops listed in this volume saw action during Price's Raid in October 1864. The lists may include name, rank, age, when and where the person mustered in, and remarks. For a list of this volume's contents, click on the Text Version button below.


Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume  3

Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 3
Creator: Kansas. Adjutant General's Office
Date: 1864
These are Civil War muster rolls for the Kansas State Militia. The troops listed in this volume saw action during Price's Raid in October 1864. The lists may include name, rank, age, when and where the person mustered in, and remarks. For a list of this volume's contents, click on the Text Version button below.


Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 5

Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 5
Creator: Kansas. Adjutant General's Office
Date: 1864
These are Civil War muster rolls for the Kansas State Militia. The troops listed in this volume saw action during Price's Raid in October 1864. The lists may include name, rank, age, when and where the person mustered in, and remarks. For a list of this volume's contents, click on the Text Version button below.


Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 6

Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 6
Creator: Kansas. Adjutant General's Office
Date: 1864
These are Civil War muster rolls for the Kansas State Militia. The troops listed in this volume saw action during Price's Raid in October 1864. The lists may include name, rank, age, when and where the person mustered in, and remarks. For a list of this volume's contents, click on the Text Version button below.


Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 7

Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 7
Creator: Kansas. Adjutant General's Office
Date: 1864
These are Civil War muster rolls for the Kansas State Militia. The troops listed in this volume saw action during Price's Raid in October 1864. The lists may include name, rank, age, when and where the person mustered in, and remarks. For a list of this volume's contents, click on the Text Version button below.


Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 8

Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 8
Creator: Kansas. Adjutant General's Office
Date: 1864
These are Civil War muster rolls for the Kansas State Militia. The troops listed in this volume saw action during Price's Raid in October 1864. The lists may include name, rank, age, when and where the person mustered in, and remarks. For a list of this volume's contents, click on the Text Version button below.


Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 9

Muster rolls, Kansas State Militia, volume 9
Creator: Kansas. Adjutant General's Office
Date: 1864
These are Civil War muster rolls for the Kansas State Militia. The troops listed in this volume saw action during Price's Raid in October 1864. The lists may include name, rank, age, when and where the person mustered in, and remarks. For a list of this volume's contents, click on the Text Version button below.


Nightstick

Nightstick
Date: 1889
This is a short wooden nightstick turned of a single piece of wood removed from the floor of Libby Prison. Libby was a notorious jail for Union officers operated by the Confederacy at Richmond, Virginia, during the Civil War. The building was dismantled in 1889 and moved to Chicago, Illinois, where it was reassembled as a museum. The person in charge of the disassembly was John W. Woodward, whom the donor, W.W. Phillips, convinced to turn over a section of the prison floor. Phillips then took the wood to a factory and watched while it was turned into three canes and three nightsticks. Phillips was an early Kansas settler and a Civil War veteran, having served in the Second Kansas Militia which was active in the Battle of the Blue in 1864.


Officer's commissions, Kansas State Militia

Officer's commissions, Kansas State Militia
Creator: Kansas. Adjutant General's Office
Date: 1864
This is a list of officers commissions. The troops listed in this volume saw action from 1861 through 1864. The lists may include name, rank, age, when and where the person mustered in, and remarks. For a list of this volume's contents, click on the Text Version button below.


Price Raid

Price Raid
Creator: Reader, Samuel James
Date: 1865
This watercolor with pencil shading was done by Samuel J. Reader of Indianola, Kansas. The painting depicts Confederate soldiers marching Union prisoners of war while a haystack burns in the background. The artist was an eyewitness to the scene, having been captured with other members of the Second Kansas Militia following General Sterling Price's Raid into Kansas. The Price Raid was a multi-day running battle that happened very near the Kansas-Missouri border in the fall of 1864. Samuel Reader was Quartermaster for the Second Kansas during the raid's Battle of the Big Blue on October 22, where Union forces were routed. The prisoners later were marched to Tyler, Texas. Reader escaped by tricking his captors into believing he was a Confederate soldier. A four-day walk brought him home to Indianola, just north of Topeka, where he recorded his adventures in a journal.


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