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M. W. Delahay to Charles Robinson, James H. Lane and others

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Washington D C Feby 16th 1856 Genl. C Robinson, Col J H Lane & others
Gentlemen, Gov Shannon left here to day for Kansas, with his private instructions from the President, their nature is here well understood, he is directed to arrest and punish all who may take part in the making and putting inforce any law in oposition to the Territorial laws now upon the Statute Book, There is a full and matured determination to carry this intention out, on the part of the President and his party, I feel much concern upon the subject, and I trust you will give the organization of an independent State Government such consideration as the importance of such a step demands, for I assure you that we are upon the brink of a crisas of serious import to us as a people and the cause of the free state party I hope you will defer calling the

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Legislature, or issuing any message, until congress shall have had an opportunity to show its purpose upon our affairs; the Govt. has private orders to command the regular troops & to arrest any and all persons that may take part in the organization of the Independent State Govt., and permit me to add that this is what I from the first antiscipated as you will remember by my speaches & votes; I hope that there will be nothing done to invoke the rath of the General Govt upon our friends, the act of sending out a message will be just what the President will recognize as an overt act of resistance to the territorial laws; and will be a pretext for acts of oppression to our people; You will pardon me for this letter, I feel that it is my duty to say thus much, you I feel sure will treat it in the kindest spirit; I shall be glad to hear from you soon and often, I do

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not get any papers or letters from the Territory; the contest between Reade & Whitfield has not come off, the result is a doubtful one at best; for there is a diversity of opinion about the contest in all quarters; I suppose if I had my credentials and should present them my arrest would follow as a matter of course if the President means what he says in his message but still I shall be controlled by future events, I write this in confidence & for the eye of our prudent friends only Very Truly your friend M W Delahay

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