Kansas Territory The Saga of Bleeding Kansas (Ch. 4, 66-95)
John Steuart Curry painted the mural “Tragic Prelude” in the State Capital in Topeka, depicting John Brown and the anti-slavery movement in the Kansas Territory
John Brown- Iconic Figure University of Kansas Kansas State University
Bleeding Kansas “God sees it. I have only a short time to live – only one death to die, and I will die fighting for this cause. There will be no more peace in this land until slavery is done for. I will give them something else to do than to extend slave territory. I will carry the war into Africa.” ~ John Brown to his son, while seeing Osawatomie burn, August 30, 1856
John Brown (1800-1859) Abolitionist willing to use violence to end slavery After leaving Kansas Terr., he led raid on the federal arsenal in Harper’s Ferry in Virginia Convicted and hanged for murder, treason and slave insurrection against the state of Virginia. Became a martyr for the abolitionist cause
Missouri Compromise of 1820 Allowed two new states to enter Union Maine become a free state; Missouri a slave state Banned slavery in the lands of the Louisiana Purchase, including the land that would become Kansas
Compromise of 1850 California entered Union as free state; but the Fugitive Slave Act would be adopted. Fugitive Slave Act – all citizens were required to assist in the recovery of slaves and fugitive slaves were denied the right of jury trial.
Stephen Douglas US Senator from Illinois known as the “Little Giant” Helped pass Compromise of 1850 and Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854 He was an expansionist and promoted popular sovereignty
Popular sovereignty - people who lived in the territories were given the right to decide on the issue of slavery Expansionist - the US should expand boundaries to include much of the continent
Kansas-Nebraska Act (1854) One of the most important documents in US history; consequences led to the Civil War (1861-1865) Repealed the Missouri Compromise ban on slavery Opened up the Kansas and Nebraska territories for settlement. Those opposed to slavery opposed K-N Act.
Proslavery or Antislavery Abolitionists - people who thought slavery immoral and should be abolished without delay Free-Staters – people who did want slavery to expand into the territories Proslavery settlers founded Atchison
Name Calling! Border ruffians – Missourians who crossed over the border to influence outcome of the slavery issue in the Kansas Territory Bushwhackers - Missourians who jumped the border to make raids on antislavery settlements Jayhawkers - Kansans who raided Missouri
The Kansas Emigrant Song by John Greenleaf Whittier Whittier wrote poetry to campaign against slavery Wrote The Kansas Emigrant Song to persuade antislavery people to settle in Kansas Terr.
The Kansas Emigrant Song We cross the prairie as of old, The pilgrims crossed the sea, To make the West, as they the East, The homestead of the free. We go to the rear of a wall of men On Freedom’s Southern line. And plant beside the cotton tree, The rugged Northern pine!
The Kansas Emigrant Song Unbearing, like the ark of old, The Bible in our van We go to test the truth of God Against the fraud of man. No pause, nor rest, save where the streams That freed the Kansas run, Save where our Pilgrim [banner] Shall flout the setting sun!
Kansas Emigrant Song What imagery and symbols does Whittier use? What are the references to North and South? What does the word “van” mean in this context? Assignment: Write a verse trying to persuade people to come to Kansas
Bleeding Kansas National attention focused on the violence over slavery, giving rise to the name Bleeding Kansas About 50 people lost their lives during the territorial period
Bleeding Kansas The Wakarusa War and the Siege of Lawrence Lawrence was under siege for a week Attack on Lawrence made national news
Bleeding Kansas If any man or woman stand in your way, blow them to [h#**] with a cold chunk of lead!” ~ Sen. Atchison, urging on proslavery forces as they pillaged Lawrence
Bleeding Kansas The Pottawatomie Massacre ( May 24-25, 1856) Reacting to the sacking of Lawrence by pro-slavery forces and the caning of Senator Sumner, Brown and other abolitionists killed five pro-slavery activists in Pottawatomie Creek in Franklin County by hacking them to death. Brown emerged as national figure This brutal act plunged the Kansas Territory further into civil war
Bleeding Kansas and John Brown “He [John Brown] said if a man stood between him and what he considered right, he would take his life as coolly as he would eat his breakfast. His actions show what he is. Always restless, he seems never to sleep. With an eye like a snake, he looks like a demon.” ~ Affidavit quote of Mahala Doyle, widow of James P. Doyle
Timeline 1820 – Missouri Compromise bans slavery in what would be the Kansas Terr. 1850 – Compromise of 1850 allows California to enter Union as a free state. The Fugitive Slave Act is passed. 1854 – Kansas- Nebraska Act creates two new territories and allows settlers to choose whether slavery will be allowed there 1855 – Bogus Legislature meets. The Wakarusa War erupts. The Topeka Constitutional Convention is held 1856 – Attack on Lawrence and Pottawatomie Massacre 1857 – Dred Scott Decision. Supreme Court rules slaves are not citizens of the US. Lecompton Constitutional Convention is held.
Slavery in Kansas Underground Railroad - a series of secret safe houses that assisted escaping slaves Ann Clark – a slave from Lecompton who escaped on the Underground Railroad.
Proslavery forces captured 11 men and shot them. Five died, five were wounded and one escaped by pretending to be dead Last major violent act in Kansas Territory
Pony Express Ran between St. Joseph, MO, and Sacramento, CA, for about 2,000 miles; 11 stations in Kansas Territory Each rider rode about 33 miles Lasted 18 months, from April 1860 until October 1861. (Closed days after transcontinental telegraph connected Omaha to Sacramento)
James Lane (1814-1866) Antislavery supporter who organized 400 settlers from northern states to come to Kansas Terr. Lane’s Army of the North One of the first U.S. senators from Kansas
James Lane Before moving to Kansas Territory, Lane voted for the Kansas-Nebraska Act as a U.S. representative from Indiana Lane called slave owners “wolves, snakes, devils”
David Rice Atchison (1807-1886) US senator from Missouri who encouraged proslavery forces to come to the Kansas Terr. and vote illegally Namesake of Atchison, Kansas, a town originally settled by slaveholding pioneers He said, “The prosperity of the whole South depends on the Kansas struggle.”
Charles Robinson (1818-1894) Antislavery advocate; led settlers to Kansas from Massachusetts with the New England Emigrant Aid Company Elected governor at Topeka and Wyandotte conventions First Governor of the state of Kansas
Charles Robinson “It is for us to choose for ourselves, and for those who shall come after us, what institutions shall bless or curse our beautiful Kansas. Shall we have freedom for all her people, and consequent prosperity, or slavery for a part, with the blight and mildew inseparable from it?” ~ Charles Robinson
Samuel Jones (1820-1880) Proslavery sheriff of Douglas County attacked Lawrence and burned down newspaper offices and other buildings Referring to the destruction of Lawrence, Jones was quoted as saying, “This is the happiest day of my life, I assure you.”
Clarina Nichols (1810-1885) Abolitionist who fought for the rights of women Came to Kansas Terr. with the New England Emigrant Aid Society Guest of the Wyandotte Constitutional Convention Helped women get right to vote in local school board elections
Andrew Reeder (1807-1864) President Franklin Pierce appointed him first governor of Kansas Territory Believed in popular sovereignty Sided with the free-staters, which angered proslavery forces Enemies charged him with treason and forced to escape in disguise
Topeka Constitution (1855) First Constitution Written by Free-Staters and prohibited slavery Approved by large majority; (Proslavery forces refused to vote) Failed to pass in the U.S Senate by two votes
Lecompton Constitution (1857) Second Constitution Written by proslavery people; (Free-Staters refused to vote) President James Buchanan submitted Lecompton Const. to U.S. Congress and recommended Kansas be admitted as a slave state U.S. Congress voted against
Leavenworth Constitution (1858) Third constitution Written by Free-State forces opposed to slavery All men (white, black, Indian) would have the right to vote but not women Passed in Kansas Terr., but U.S. Congress voted against
Wyandotte Constitution (1859) Fourth and final Constitution Wyandotte Const. made Kansas a free state Restricted voting rights and militia service to white men (but women gained property rights) Kansas did not (could not) join Union until southern states began seceding prior to the Civil War. The Wyandotte Const. passed Oct. 4, 1859, and Kansas became the 34 th state on Jan. 29, 1861
From Territory to Statehood To become the state of Kansas, The people of the Kansas Territory had to write a constitution The U.S. Congress had to accept the constitution. Constitutional conventions took place in Topeka, Lecompton, Leavenworth and finally Wyandotte
Bleeding Kansas and Election Fraud “About one thousand Missourians arrived in Lawrence to vote, and vote. Mrs. Robinson says: ‘they were armed with guns, pistols, rifles and bowie-knifes. They brought two cannon loaded with musket balls.” ~ From the Annals of Kansas, Daniel W. Wilder, 1875
Bleeding Kansas “We will before six months rolls around have the Devil to play in Kansas…We are organizing to meet their organization. We will be compelled to shoot, burn an hang, but the thing will soon be over.” ~ Senator Atchison to U.S. Secretary of War Jefferson Davis, Sept. 24, 1854
~ Abraham Lincoln ~ Thoughts on John Brown “ Old John Brown has just been executed for treason against the state. We cannot object, even though he agreed with us in thinking slavery wrong. That cannot excuse violence, bloodshed, and treason. It could avail him nothing that he might think himself right.” ~ Abraham Lincoln, speaking in Leavenworth, Kansas Territory, Dec. 3, 1859
Sen. Charles Sumner: The “Crime Against Kansas” In 1856 Sen. Charles Sumner of Massachusetts spoke about the “Crime against Kansas” - opening up the slavery issue in the Kansas Territory He called Sen. Stephen Douglas of Illinois a “noise-some, squat, and nameless animal… not a proper model for an American senator.” Sumner also verbally attacked Sen. Andrew Butler of South Carolina for being proslavery. Rep. Preston Brooks of South Carolina (the nephew of Butler) entered the Senate days later and hit Sumner with a cane so severely, he beat unconscious Sumner, who did not recover for nearly three years.
Slavery and The Dred Scott Case A slave named Dred Scott sued the US Government for his freedom Supreme Court ruled in 1857 that Scott and others of African ancestry (free or slave) were not US citizens Court ruled it unconstitutional for the US Gov. to prohibit slavery in the territories, incl. the Kansas Terr. The decision alarmed mostly antislavery people
Slavery and the Underground Railroad Underground Railroad – Network of safe houses that helped slaves escape Success of Underground Railroad depended on secrecy Ann Clark – slave from Lecompton, Kansas, who escaped on the Underground Railroad
Why Emigrate to Kansas? Isaac and Ellen Goodnow Motivated to fight against slavery, the Goodnows and their company of 200 settlers came to Kansas Territory Isaac founded the college that became Kansas State University Built in what became Manhattan, their house is a State Historic Site
Why Emigrate to Kansas? Most people came to Kansas for cheap land and economic opportunities (not for pro or anti-slavery causes) Preemption Act - a person could claim up to 160 acres; obligated to pay $1.25 per acre after public land survey Thousands came to Kansas seeking fortunes in gold Others came to Kansas to push their proslavery and antislavery beliefs
Why Emigrate to Kansas? Thousands came to Kansas Territory to seek fortune in gold Western boundary extended to the Rocky Mountains “Pike’s Peak or Bust”
Why Emigrate to Kansas? New England Emigrant Aid Company Antislavery group; received financial and moral support from New England abolitionists Under guidance from the NEEAC, Charles Robinson led settlers from Massachusetts to Kansas Territory Clarina Nichols came to Kansas Territory with the NEEAC
“Beecher Bibles” Henry Ward Beecher – abolitionist preacher from Connecticut Antislavery forces used rifles sometimes called “Beecher Bibles” because the rifles were shipped to Kansas in boxes labeled “bibles”