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Page 1 of 4, showing 10 records out of 35 total, starting on record 1, ending on 10

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Title | Creator | Date Made Visible | None

John Brown to J. T. Cox

Brown, John, 1800-1859

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.

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National Kansas Relief Committee, minutes

National Kansas Committee

This document details the minutes of three meetings of the Kansas Relief Committee, otherwise known as the National Kansas Committee, held in 1856 on June 9th, June 21st, and June 26th. It also includes information about the membership of this emigrant aid company. The first of these meetings adopted resolutions to aid the plight of free-state settlers in Kansas Territory. Furthermore, the members of the committee decided to establish five thousand settlers in Kansas Territory and to give them a year's worth of provisions.

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Elizabeth Comstock to John P. St. John

Comstock, Elizabeth

In this letter Elizabeth Comstock, a former agent of the Kansas Freedmen?s Relief Association, relates her experiences during her visit to the East coast in 1881. Comstock and some of her New York colleagues had the opportunity to speak with President James Garfield, giving him four main points to consider regarding the Exodus movement. According to her letter, Garfield was devoted to aiding black refugees. She also wrote of other matters, including how some blacks in southern Kansas were displeased about the dissolution of the Kansas Freedmen?s Relief Association; in contrast, Comstock believed the demise of this association had some positive repercussions.

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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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A. Finch to Thaddeus Hyatt

Finch, H.

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.

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New York Daily Tribune, "The Drouth and Famine in Kansas"

New York Daily Tribune

This newspaper article, published in the New York Daily Tribune from October 10, 1860, outlined the basic details of the suffering and destitution of settlers in Kansas. It also included reprints of two circulars originating from Kansas Territory. One was from the Presbytery of Highland, and the other was from the Central Relief Committee based in Leavenworth. The first reprinted circular provided information about the dire situation and gave the names of the members of this committee. The second circular requested that the elders and deacons of each church in Kansas ascertain how many families needed immediate assistance in order to present a full report to the Central Relief Committee.

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Barstow Darrach to Samuel L. Adair

Darrach, Barstow

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.

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S.T. Shore, testimony

This testimony, a portion of the Journal of Investigations in Kansas, was collected by the National Kansas Committee under the leadership of Thaddeus Hyatt. Although Captain Shore was a free state militia captain and was active during the border warfare of 1856, this account focuses on his personal life and his perceptions of the Kansas Territory rather than upon his political or military experiences. The testimony begins with general information about his family, claim, etc., and then proceeds to his personal opinion of the land and vegetation in Kansas.

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W. F. M. Arny to Thaddeus Hyatt

Arny, W. F. M. (William Frederick Milton), 1813-1881

W.F.M. Arny, agent of the National Kansas Committee, continues to send Thaddeus Hyatt, president of this committee, copies of letters he had received from Kansas settlers. These letters describe the economic conditions resulting from the continued drought during 1860. The reports were submitted by Rev. J. W. Fox of Ridgeway, Kansas Territory; the "Committee on the Little Osage" of Bourbon County, Kansas Territory; Dr. I. W. Robinson of Manhattan, Kansas Territory; and Joseph M. Todd and others of Greenwood Township in Greenwood County, Kansas Territory.

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Edmund B. Whitman to George L. Stearns

Whitman, E. B. (Edmund Burke), 1812-1883

This rather lengthy report from Lawrence, Kansas Territory, addresses many issues, especially those surrounding the Lecompton constitutional controversy. With "the Topeka Movement . . . abandoned," the question is what would take its place to resist the Lecompton Constitution if it were accepted by the Congress. The territorial legislature had formally "protested against the admission of Kansas into the Union under the Lecompton Constitution," and "the Mass of the people are determined" to resist its imposition. Whitman makes many other interesting observations about the political situation regarding Democrats and Republicans and even abolitionists: "men who seek here and now, on this issue, to break the back bone of slavery forever." In addition to the political, Whitman describes his "labor of distributing the clothing . . . for the relief of Kansas," and discusses in some detail the financial situation regarding the Committee, his personal debt, Kansas relief, and support to John Brown.

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