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Title | Creator | Date Made Visible | None

Isaiah T. Montgomery to Governor John P. St. John

Montgomery, Isaiah T. (Isaiah Thorton), 1847-1924

Isaiah T. Montgomery of Hurricane, Mississippi, wrote Governor John P. St. John of Topeka, Kansas, concerning the migration of twenty five families of black refugees from Mississippi to Kansas. Montgomery described the difficulties faced by the families and a visit he made to Kansas to assess their conditions. He also critiqued the relief programs in Kansas and made recommendations for assisting present and future migrants. In addition, the letter addresses Montgomery's broader effort to establish a community for black refugees in Kansas and the oppressive conditions under which blacks lived in Mississippi. Montgomery dictated a letter sent to him from William Nervis regarding the conditions of the refugees. During 1879 and 1880 a mass exodus of blacks from the deep South, known as the Negro Exodus, overwhelmed the state's ability to accommodate the refugees. These refugees were called Exodusters. Governor St. John established a Freedman's Relief Association to assist the migrants but its efforts were largely seen as a failure.

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James H. Holmes, testimony

Hyatt, Thaddeus

This testimony of James Holmes is a portion of the Journal of Investigations in Kansas, a collection of personal stories recorded by Thaddeus Hyatt, president of the National Kansas Committee. Mr. Holmes had studied agricultural chemistry before entering Kansas Territory, and his initial reason for emigrating was his desire to undertake agricultural experiments. He had also intended to join with Clubbs Vegetarian Settlement, which was located on the Neosho River near the north line of the Osage Reserve. He goes into detail about the Neosho valley and its vegetation, mineral deposits, etc. The rest of his account deals with his involvement in the free state militia and his role in defending Osawatomie.

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