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Let us next inquire by what rule of uniformity Congress revive or put in force any law or regulation which may was governed, in the exercise of this
power of determining have existed prior to the act of 6 March, 1820, either pro. the condition of each Territory as to Slavery, while remain- tecting, establishing, prohibiting, or abolishing Slavery." ing a Territory, as manifested in those thirteen instances. Thus it was promulgated to the people of this whole An examination of our history will show that this was not country that here was a clear field for competition-an done from time to time by agitation and local or party | open course for the race of rivalship; the goal of which triunphs in Congress. The rule pursued was uniform and was, the ultimate establishment of a sovereign State; and clear; and, whoever may have lost by it, peace and pros- the prize, the reward of everlasting liberty and its instituperity have been gained. That rule was this:
tions on the one hand, or the perpetuity of Slavery and Where Slavery was actually existing in a country to any its concomitants on the other. It is the obvious duty of considerable or general extent, it was (though somewhat this government, while this law continues, to see this modified as to further importation in some instances, as in manifesto faithfully, and honorably, and honestly per. Mississippi and Orleans Territories) suffered to remain. formed, even though its particular supporters may sce The fact that it had been taken and existed there, was cause of a result unfavorable to their hopes. taken as an indication of its adaptation and local utility. It is further to be observed that, in the performance of Where Slavery did not in fact exist to any appreciable ex- this novel experiment, it was provided that all white tent, the same was, by Congress, expressly prohibited ; so men who became inhabitants in Kansas were entitled to that in either case the country was settled up without diffi- vote without regard to their time of residence, usually culty or doubt as to the character of its institutions. In no provided in other Territories. Nor was this right of instance was this difficult and disturbing subject left to the voting confined to American citizens, but included all people who had and who might settle in the Territory, to such aliens as had declared, or would declare, on oath, be there an everlasting bone of contention, so long as the their intention to become citizens. Thus was the proclaTerritorial government should continue. It was ever re- mation to the world to become inhabitants of Kansas, and garded, too, as a subject in which the whole country had enlist in this great enterprise, by the force of numbers, an interest, and, therefore, improper for local legislation. by vote, to decide for it the great question. Was it to be
And though, whenever the people of a Territory come to expected that this great proclamation for the political forin their own organic law, as an independent State, they tournament would be listened to with indifference and woull, either before or after their admission as a State, apathy? Was it prepared and presented in that spirit ? foria and mold their institutions, as a Sovereign State, in Did it relate to a subject on which the people were cool their own way, yet it must be expected, and has always or indifferent? A large part of the people of this country proved true, that the State has taken the character her look on domestic Slavery as “only evil, and that conpupilige has prepared her for, as well in respect to Slavery tinually," alike to master and to slave, and to the comas in other respects. Hence, six of the thirteen States are munity; to be left alone to the management or enjoy. Free States, because Slavery was prohibited in them þy ment of the people of the States where it exists, but not Congress, while Territories, to wit: Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, to be extended, more especially as it gives, or may give, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Iowa. Seven of the thirteen political supremacy to a minority of the people of this are slaveholding States, because Slavery was allowed in country in the United States government. On the other them by Congress while they were Territories, to wit: Ten- hand, many of the people of another part of the United Dessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Florida, Louisiana, Arkansas States regard Slavery, if not in the abstract a blessing, at and Missouri.
least as now existing, a condition of society best for On the 6th of March, A.D. 1820, was passed by Con- both white and black, while they exist together; while gress the act preparatory to the admission of the Siate of others regard it as no evil, but as the highest state of Dlissouri into the Union. Much controversy and discus- social condition. These consider that they cannot, with sion arose on the question whether a prohibition of safety to their interests, permit political ascendency to Slavery within said State should be inserted, and it re- be largely in the hands of those unfriendly to this pocu. sulted in this : that said State should be admitted without liar institution. From these conflicting views, long and such prohibition, but that Slavery should be forever pro- violent has been the controversy, and experience seems hibited in the rest of that country ceded to us by France to show it interminable. lying north of 36° 30' north latitude, and it was so done. A succinct statement of the exercise and progress of This contract is known as the Missouri Compromise. the material events in Kansas is this : After the passage Uuder this arrangement, Missouri was admitted as a of this law, establishing the Territory of Kansas, a large slaveholding State, the same having been a slaveholding body of settlers rapidly entered into said Territory with a Territory. Arkansas, south of the line, was formed into view to permanent inhabitancy therein. Most of these a Territory, and Slavery allowed therein, and afterward were from the Free States of the West and North, who admitted as a slaveholding State. Iowa was made a probably intended by their votes and influence to estab. Territory north of the line, aud, under the operation of lish there a Free State, agreeably to the law which invited the law, was settled up without slaves, and admitted as a them. Some part of those from the Northern States had free State. The country now making the Territories of been encouraged and aided in this enterprise by the Kansas and Nebraska, in 1820, was almost or entirely Emigrant Aid Society formed in Massachusetts, which uniuhabited, and lay north of said line, and whatever put forth some exertions in this laudable object, by open settlers entered the same before 1954, did so under that and public measures, in providing facilities for transporlaw, forever forbidding Slavery therein.
tation to all peaceable citizens who desired to become perIn 1854, Congress passed an act establishing two new manent settlers in said Territory, and providing there. Territories-Nebraska and Kansas-in this region of in hotels, mills, etc., for the public accommodation of that country, where Slavery had been prohibited for more new country. than thirty years; and, instead of leaving said law against The Governor of Kansas, having, in pursuance of law, Slavery in operation, or prohibiting or expressly allowing divided the territory into districts, and procured a census or establishing Slavery, Congress left the subject in said thereof, issued his proclamation for the election of a Territories, to be discussed, agitated, and legislated on, Legislative Assembly therein, to take place on the Suth from time to time, and the elections in said Territories to day of March, 1855, and directed how the same should be conducted with reference to that subject, from year to be conducted, and the returns made to him agreeable to year, so long as they should remain Territories; for, the law establishing said Territory. On the day of election, whatever laws might be passed by the Territorial legisla: large bodies of armed men from the State of Missouri, tures on this subject, must be subject to change or repeal appeared at the polls in most of the districts, and, by by those of the succeeding years. In most former Terri- most violent and tumultuous carriage and demeanor, torial governments, it was provided by law that their overawed the defenseless inhabitants, and by their own laws were subject to the revision of Congress, so that votes elected a large majority of the members of both they would be made with caution. In these Territories, Houses of said Assembly. On the returns of said electhat was omitted.
tion being made to the Governor, protests and objections The provision in relation to Slavery in Nebraska and were made to him in relation to a part of said districts; Kansas is as follows: "The eighth section of the act pre- and as to them, he set aside such, and such only, as by paratory to the admission of Missouri into the Union the returns appeared to be bad. In relation to others, (which being inconsistent with the principle of non-inter- covering, in all
, a majority of the two Houses, equally vention by Congress with Slavery in the States and Ter. vicious in fact, but apparently good by formal returns, ritories, as required by the legislation of 1850), commonly the inhabitants thereof, borne down by said violence and called the Compromise Measures) is hereby declared intimidation, scattered and discouraged, and laboring inoperatios and void ; it being the true intent and under apprehensions of personal violence, refrained and meaning of this act not to legislate Slavery into said Ter- desisted from presenting any protest to the Governor in ritory or State, nor to exclude it therefrom, but to leave relation thereto; and he, then uninformed in relation the people thereof perfectly free to form and regulate thereto, issued certificates to the wembers who ippeared their domestic insitutions in their own way, subject only by said formal returns to have been elected. to the Constitution of the United States : Provided, In relation to those districts which the Governor so se That nothing herein contain u shah be construed to aside, orders w se by him issued fur new elections. Lu one of these districts, the sa, ne proceedings were repeated |tion of delegates to be elected, and to assemble at Topeka by men from Missouri, and in others not, and certificates in said Territory, on the 19th day of September, 1855, not were issued to the persons elected.
to form a Constitution, but to consider the propriety of This legislative assembly, so elected, assembled at Paw- calling, formally, a Convention for that purpose. nee, on the second day of July, 1855, that being the time Delegates were elected agreeably to the proclamation and place for holding said meeting, as fixed by the Gov- so issued, and they met at Topeka on the fourth Tuesernor, by authority of law. On assembling, the said day in October, 1855, and formed a constitution, which houses proceeded to set aside and reject those members was submitted to the people, and was ratified by them so elected on said second election, except in the district by vote in the districts. An election of Siate officers where the men from Missouri had, at said election, chosen and members of the State legislature has been had, and the same persons they had elected at the said first election, a representative to Congress elected, and it is intended and they admitted all of the said first-elected members. to proceed to the election of senators, with the view to
A legislative assembly, so created by military force, present the same, with the constitution, to Congress for by a foreiga invasion, in violation of the organic law, was admission into the Union. but a usurpation. No act of its own, no act or neglect of Whatever views individuals may at times, or in meetthe Governor, could legalize or sanctify it. Its own ings, have expressed, and whatever ultimate determinadecisions as to its own legality are like its laws, but the tion may have been entertained in the result of being fruits of its own usurpation, which no Governor could spurned by Congress, and refused redress, is now enlegitimate.
tirely immaterial. That cannot condemn or give charThe people of Kansas, thus invaded, subdued, oppressed acter to the proceedings thus far pursued. and insulted, seeing their Territorial Government (such Many have honestly believed usurpation could make only in form) perverted into an engine to crush them in no law, and that if Congress made no further provisions the dust, and to defeat and destroy the professed object they were well justified in forming a law for themselves; of their organic law, by depriving them of the “perfect but it is not now necessary to consider that matter, as freedom" therein provided; and finding no ground to it is to be hoped that Congress will not leave them to Lope for rights in that organization, they proceeded, such a necessity. under the guaranty of the United States Constitution, Thus far, this effort of the people for redress is peace"peaceably to assemble to petition the Government for ful, constitutional, and right. Whether it will succeed, the redress of (their) grievances.” They saw no earthly rests with Congress to determine; but clear it is that it source of relief but in the formation of a State Govern should not be met and denounced as revolutionary, ment by the people, and the acceptance and ratification rebellious, insurrectionary, or unlawful, nor does it call thereof by Congress.
for or justify the exercise of any force by any depart. It is true that, in several instances in our political his- ment of this government to check or control it. tory, the people of a Territory have been authorized by It now becomes proper to inquire what should be an act of Congress to form a - State Constitution, and done by Congress; for we are informed by the Presi. after so doing, were admitted by Congress. It is quite dent, in substance, that he has no power to correct a obvious that no such authority could be given by the act usurpation, and that the laws, even though made by of the Territorial Government. That clearly has no usurped authority, must be by him enforced and ex. power to create another Government, paramount to it. ecuted, even with military force. The measures of self. It is equaily true that, in numerous instances in redress should be applied to the true cause of the difti. our history, the people of a Territory have, without any culty. This obviously lies in the repeal of the clause previous act of Congress, proceeded to call a Convention for freedom in the act of 1820, and therefore, the true of the people by their delegates ; have formed a State Con- remedy lies in the entire repeal of the act of 1854, which stitution, which has been adopted by the people, and a effected it. Let this be done with frankness and mag. State Legislature assembled under it, and chosen Senators nanimity, and Kansas be organized anew as a Free Terto Congress, and then have presented said Constitution ritory, and all will be put right. to Congress, which has approved the same, and received But, if Congress insist on proceeding with the experithe Senators and members of Congress who were chosen ment,' then declare all the action by this spurious, under it before Congress had approved the same. Such foreign legislative assembly utterly inoperative and void, was the case of Tennessee; such was the case of Michi- and direct a reorganization, providing proper safeguards gan, where the people not only formed a State Constitu- for legal voting and against foreign force. tion without an act of Congress, but they actually put There is, however, another way to put an end to all their State Government into full operation and passed this trouble there, and in the nation, without retracing laws, and it was approved by Congress by receiving it as steps or continuing violence, or by force compelling a State. The people of Florida formed their Constitution obedience to tyrannical laws made by foreign force; without any act of Congress therefor, six years before and that is, by admitting that Territory as a State, with they were admitted into the Union. When the people of her free constitution. True, indeed, her numbers are Arkansas were about forming a State Constitution with not such as give her a right to demand admission, beout a previous act of Congress, in 1835, the Territorial ing, as the President informs us, probably only about Governor applied to the President on the subject, who twenty-five thousand. The Constitution fixes no numreferred the matter to the Attorney-General, and his ber as necessary, and the importance of now settling opinion, as then expressed and published, contained the this question may well justify Congress in admitting her following:
as a State, at this time, especially as we have good rea“It is not in the power of the general assembly of Arkansas son to believe that, if admitted as a State, and controto pass any law for the purpose of electing members to a Conversy ended, it will immediately fill up with a numervention to form a Constitution and State government, nor to ous and successful population. do any other act, directly or indirectly, to create such government. Every such law, even though it were approved by the
At any rate, it seems impossible to believe that Con. governor of the Territory, would be null and void ; if passed gress is to leave that people without redress, to have by them notwithstanding his veto, by a vote of iwo-thirds of enforced upon them by the army of the nation these each branch, it would still be equally void.”
measures and laws of violence and oppression. Are He further decided that it was not rebellious, or insur- they to be dragooned into submission; Is that an ex. rectionary, or even unlawful, for the people peaceably to periment pleasant to execute on our own free people ? proceed, even without an act of Congress, in forming a
The true character of this transaction is matter of ex. Constitution, and in so forming a State Constitution and tensive notoriety. Its essential features are too obvious so far organizing under the same as to choose the to allow of any successful disguise or palliation, however officers necessary for its representation in Congress, complicated or ingenious may be the statements, or with a view to present the same to Congress for ad however special the pleadings, for that purpose. The mission, was a power which fell clearly within the case requires some quieting, kind and prudent treatright of the people to assemble and petition for redress. ment by the hand of Congress to do justice and satisfy The people of Arkansas proceeded without an act of Con the nation. The people of this country are peacefully gress, and were received into the Union accordingly. If relying on Congress to provide the competent measures any rights were derived to the people of Arkansas from of redress which they have the undoubted power to adthe terms of the French treaty of cession, they equally
minister. extended to the people of Kansas, it being a part of the
The Attorney-General, in the case of Arkansas, says: same cession.
“ Congress may at pleasure repeal or modify the laws In this view of the subject, in the first part of August, passed by the Territorial Legislature, and may at any 1855, a call was published in the public papers, for a time abrogate and remodel the legislature itself, and ai meeting of the citizens of Kansas, irrespective of party, to the other departments of the Territorial Government. meet at Lawrence, in said Territory, on the 15th of said
Treating this grievance in Kansas with ingenious exAugust, to take into consideration the propriety of call. cuses, with neglect or contenipt, or riding over the ing a Couvention of the people of the whole Territory, to oppressed with an army, and dragooning them into subconsider that subject. That meeting was held on the 15th mission, will make no satisfactory termination. Party day of August last, and it proceeded to call such Conven- success may at times be temporarily secured by adroit devices, plausible pretenses, and partisan address ; but These gentlemen proceeded to Kansas, and the permanent preservation of this Union can be main. tained only by frankness and integrity. Justice may be spent several weeks there in taking testimony as denied where it ought to be anted; power may perpe
to the elections, etc., which had taken place in tuate that vassalage which violence and usurpation have i that Territory. The testimony thus taken forms produced; the subjugation of white freemen may be a volume of nearly twelve hundred large and necessary, that African Slavery may
succeed; a course must not be expected to produce peace and closely-printed pages, the substance of which satisfaction in our country, so long as the people retain was summed up on their return by the majority any proper sentiment of justice, liberty, and law.
(Messrs. Howard and Sherman), in the following
J. COLLAYER. The majority and minority Reports being re. REPORT ON THE OUTRAGES IN KANSAS. ceived, various matters relating to Kansas were A journal of proceedings, including sundry communica. debated until the 19th of March, the House tions made to and by the Committee was kept, a copy of
which is herewith submitted. was brought to a vote on the proposition of with submitted ; a copy of it has been made and arranged
The testimony also is herethe comunittee of elections to empower said not according to the order in which it was taken, but so as committee to send to Kansas for persons and to present, as clearly as possible, a consecutive history of papers, which was modified on motion of Mr. events in the Territory, from its organization to the 19th
day of March, A. D. 1856. Dunn, of Ind., so as to raise a special committee Your Committee deem it their duty to state, as briefly as of three members, to be appointed by the possible, the principal facts proven before them.
When Speaker. The resolutions raising this com
the act to organize the Territory of Kansas was passed on
the 24th day of May, 1854, the greater portion of its easterz mittee gave it ample powers
border was included in Indian reservations not open for To inquire into and collect evidence in regard to settlement; and there were but few white settlers in any the troubles in Kansas generally, and particularly in portion of the Territory. Its Indian population was ra regard to any fraud or force attempted or practiced in pidly decreasing, while many emigrants from diffe parts reference to any of the elections which have taken of our country were anxiously waiting the extinction of place in said Territory, either under the law organizing the Indian title, and the establishment of a Territoriai said Territory, or under any pretended law which may Government, to seek new homes on its fertile prairies. It be alleged to have taken effect there since. That they cannot be doubted that, if its condition as a free Territory shall fully investigate and take proof of all violent and had been left undisturbed by Congress, its settlement tumultuous proceedings in said Territory, at any time would have been rapid, peaceful, and prosperous. Its since the passage of the Kansas Nebraska act, whether climate, soil, and its easy access to the older settlements, engaged in by the residents of said Territory, or by any would have made it the favored course for the tide of person or persons from elsewhere going into said Terri- emigration constantly flowing to the West, and by this tory, and doing, or encouraging others to do, any act of time it would have been admitted into the Union as a Free violence or public disturbance against the laws of the State, without the least sectional excitement. If so organUnited States, or the rights, peace, and safety of the ized, none but the kindest feeling could have existed beresidents of said Territory; and for that purpose, said tween it and the adjoining State. Their mutual interests Committee shall have full power to send for, and ex
and intercourse, instead of, as now, endangering the har. emine, and take copies of, all such papers, public re
mony of the Union, would have strengthened the ties of cords, and proceedings, as in their judgment will be use
national brotherhood. The testimony clearly shows, that ful in the premises; and also, to send for persons and before the proposition to repeal the Missouri Compromise examine them on oatin, or affirmation, as to matters
was introduced into Congress, the people of western Miswithin their knowledge, touching the matters of said in souri appeared indifferent to the prohibition of Slavery vestigation; and said Committee, by their chairman, shall in the Territory, and neither asked nor desired its repear. have power to administer all necessary oaths or affirma- When, however, the prohibition was removed by the tions connected with their aforesaid duties. That said action of Congress, the aspect of affairs entirely changed. Committee may hold their investigations at such places The whole country was agitated by the reopening of a and times as to them may seem advisable, and that they controversy which conservative men in different sections have leave of absence from the duties of this House until hoped had been settled, in every State and Territory, by they shall have completed such investigation. That they some law beyond the danger of repeal. The excitement be authorized to employ one or more clerks, and one or
which has always accompanied the discussion of the more assistant sergeants-at-arms, to aid them in their Slavery question was greatly increased, by the hope on investigation; and may administer to them an oath, or
the one hand of extending Slavery into a region from which affirmation, faithfully to perform the duties assigned to it had been excluded by law, and on the other by a sense them, respectively, and to keep secret all matters
of wrong done by what was regarded as a dishonor of which may come to their knowledge touching such in
a national compact. This excitement was naturally transvestigation, as said Committee may direct, until the ferred into the border counties of Missouri and the TerriReport of the same shall be submitted to this House; tory, as settlers favoring free or slave institutions moved
into it. and said Committee may discharge any such clerk or
A new difficulty soon occurred. Different con. assistant sergeant-at-arms for neglect of duty or disre- structions were put upon the organic .aw. It was congard of instructions in the premises, and employ others tended by the one party that the right to hold slaves in under like regulations.
the Territory existed, and that neither the people nor the The vote of the Slave States was unanimous power was alone possessed by the people when they were
Territorial Legislature could prohibit Slavery—that that against the investigation, 17 from the Free authorized to form a State government. It was conStates voting with them. Yeas 101 ; Nays 93.
tended that the removal of the restriction virtually estab
lished Slavery in the Territory. This claim was urged by The following are the negatives from the Free many prominent men in western Missouri, who actively States :
engaged in the affairs of the Territory. Every movement, Nays--Against the Investigation:
of whatever character, which tended to establish free insti
tutions, was regarded as an interference with their rights. MAINE-Thomas J. D. Fuller-1.
Within a few
days after the organic law passed, and as New-York-Juhn Kelly, William W. Valk, John soon as its passage could be known on the border, leading Wheeler, Thomas R. Whitney-4.
citizens of ouri crossed into the Territory, held squat NEW-JERSEY-George Vail-1.
ter meetings, and then returned to their homes. Among PENNSYLVANIA—John Cadwalader, Thomas B. Flo- their resolutions are the following: rence, J. Glancy Jones-3.
"That we will afford protection to no Abolitionist as a settler INDIANA-William H. English, Smith Miller-2. of this Territory." MICHIGAN—George W. Peck--1.
“That we recognize the institution of Slavery as already exILLINOIS—James C. Allen, Thomas L Harris, Samuel isting in this Territory, and advise slaveholders to introduce 8 Marshall, William A. Richardson-4.
their property as early as possible.” CALIFORNIA-Philemon T. Herbert-1.
Similar resolutions were passed in various parts of the So the resolution prevailed, and Messrs. Wil Territory, and by meetings in several counties of Missouri.
Thus the first effect of the repeal of the restriction against liam A. Howard, of Michigan, John Sherman, Slavery was to substitute the resolves of squatter meetings, of Ohio, and Mordecai Oliver, of Missouri, were composed almost exclusively of Missourians, for the delibe appointed the Committee of Investigation there- rate action of Congress, acquiesced in for 85 years.
This unlawful interference has been continued in every by required.
important event in the history of the Territory : suomi
election has been controlled, not by the actual settlers, Chapman's, over 40 miles from the Missouri State line. but by citizens of Missouri; and, as a consequence, every It was a thinly-settled region, containing but 47 voters officer in the Territory, from constables to legislators, ex. in February, 1855, when the census was taken. On the cept those appointed by the President, owe their positions day before the election, from 100 to 150 citizens of Cass to non-resident voters. None have been elected by the and Jackson Counties, Mo., came into this district, settlers; and your Committee have been unable to find declaring their purpose to vote, and that they were that any political power whatever, however unimportant, ) bound to make Kansas a Slave State, if they did it at has been exercised by the people of the Territory. the point of the sword. Persons of the party on the way
In October, A. D. 1854, Governor A. H. Reeder and the drove each a stake in the ground and called it a claim other officers appointed by the President arrived in the and in one case several names were put on one stake. Territory. Settlers from all parts of the country were the party of strangers camped all night near where the moving in in great numbers, making their claims and election was to be held, and in the morning were at the building their cabins. About the same time, and before election-polls and voted. One of their party got drunk, any election was or could be held in the Territory, a secret and, to get rid of Dr. Chapman, a judge of the election, political society was formed in the State of Missouri. It they sent for him to come and see a sick man, and in his was known by different names, such as “Social Band," i absence filled his place with another judge, who was not “Friends' Society,” “Blue Lodge,” “The Sons of the sworn. They did not deny nor conceal that they were South." Its members were bound together by secret residents of Missouri, and many of them were recognized oaths, and they had passwords, signs, and grips, by which as such by others. They declared that they were bound they were known to each other. Penalties were imposed to make Kansas a Slave State. They insisted upon their for violating the rules and secrets of the Order. Written right to vote in the Territory if they were in it one hour. minutes were kept of the proceedings of the Lodges, and After the election, they again returned to their homes in the different Lodges were connected together by an effec- Missouri, camping over night on the way. tive organization. It embraced great numbers of the citi- We find upon the poll-books 161 names ; of these not sens of Missouri, and was extended into other Slave States over 80 resided in the Territory; 181 were non-residents. and into the Territory. Its avowed purpose was not only But few settlers attended the election in the Vth Disto extend Slavery into Kansas, but also into other terri-trict, the district being large and the settlement scattered. tory of the United States; and to form a union of all the 82 votes were cast; of these between 20 and 80 were setfriends of that institution. Its plan of operating was to tlers, and the residue were citizens of Missouri. They organize and send men to vote at the elections in the Ter passed into the Territory by way of the Santa Fe road and ritory, to collect money to pay their expenses, and, if by the residence of Dr. Westfall, who then lived on the necessary, to protect them in voting. It also proposed to western line of Missouri. Some little excitement arose at induce Pro-Slavery men to emigrate into the Territory, to the polls as to the legality of their voting, but they did aid and sustain them while there, and to elect none to vote for General Whitfield, and said they intended to office but those friendly to their views. This dangerous make Kansas a Slave State, and that they had claims in society was controlled by men who avowed their purpose the Territory. Judge Teazle, judge of the court in Jackto extend Slavery into the Territory at all hazards, and son County, Missouri, was present, but did not vote. He was altogether the most effective instrument in organizing said he did not intend to vote, but came to see that others the subsequent armed invasions and forays. In its Lodges voted. After the election, the Missourians returned the in Missouri, the affairs of Kansas were discussed, the force way they came. necessary to control the election was divided into bands, The election in the VIth District was held at Fort Scott, and leaders selected; means were collected, and signs and in the southeast part of the Territory, and near the Misbadges were agreed upon. While the great body of the souri line. A party of about one hundred men, from Cass actual settlers of the Territory were relying upon the and the counties in Missouri south of it, went into the rights secured to them by the organic law, and had formed Territory, traveling about 45 miles, most of them with no organization or combination whatever, this conspiracy their wagons and tents, and camping out. They appeared against their rights was gathering strength in Missouri, and at the place of election. Some attempts were made to would have been sufficient at their first election to have swear them, but two of the judges were prevailed upon overpowered them, if they had been united to a man. not to do so, and none were sworn, and as many as chose
Your Committee had great difficulty in eliciting the voted. There were but few resident voters at the polls. proof of the details in regard to this secret society. One The settlement was sparse_about 25 actual settlers voted witness, member of the legislative council, refused to out of 105 votes cast, leaving 80 illegal votes. After the answer questions in reference to it. Another declined to voting was over, the Missourians went to their wagons and answer fully, because to do so would result to his injury. commenced leaving for home. Others could or would only answer as to the general pur- The most shameless fraud practiced upon the rights of poses of the Society, but sufficient is disclosed in the the settlers at this election was in the VIIth District. It testimony to show the influence it had in controlling the is a remote settlement, about 75 miles from the Missouri elections in the Territory.
line, and contained in February, A.D. 1855, three months The first election was for a Delegate to Congress. It was afterward, when the census was taken, but 53 voters, and appointed for the 29th of November, 1854. The Governor yet the poll-books show that 604_votes were cast. The divided the Territory into seventeen Election-Districts; s election was held at the house of Frey McGee, at a place appointed Judges and prescribed proper rules for the called "110.” But few of the actual settlers were present election. In the Ist, IIId, Villth, ixth, Xth, XIIth, at the polls. A witness who formerly resided in Jackson XIIIth, and XVIIth Districts there appears to have been County, Missouri, and was well acquainted with the citibut little if any fraudulent voting.
zens of that county, says that he saw a great many wagons The election in the IId District was held at the village and tents at the place of election, and many individuals of Douglas, nearly fifty miles from the Missouri line. On he knew from Jackson County. He was in their tents, and the day before the election, large companies of men conversed with some of them, and they told him they had came into the district in wagons and on horseback, and come with the intention of voting. He went to the polls declared that they were from the State of Missouri, and intending to vote for Flenniken, and his ticket being of a were going to Douglas to vote. On the morning of the different color from the rest, his vote was challenged by election, they gathered around the house where the elec- Frey McGee, who had been appointed one of the judges, tion was to be held. Two of the judges appointed by but did not serve. Lemuel Ralstone, a citizen of Missouri, the Governor did not appear, and other judges were was acting in his place. The witness then challenged the elected by the crowd. All then voted. In order to vote of a young man by the name of Nolan, whom he make a pretense of right to vote, some persons of the knew to reside in Jackson County. Finally, the thing was company kept a pretended register of squatter claims, hushed up, as the witness had a good many friends there on which any one could enter his name and then assert from that county, and it might lead to a fight if he chalhe had a claim in the Territory. A citizen of the district lenged any more votes. Both voted, and he then went who was himself a candidate for Delegate to Congress, down to their camp. He there saw many of his old acwas told by one of the strangers, that he would be quaintances, whom he knew had voted at the election in abused and probably killed he challenged a vote. He August previous in Missouri, and who still resided in that was seized by the collar, called a d-d Abolitionist, and State. By a careful comparison of the poll-lists with the was compelled to seek protection in the room with the census-rolls, we find but 12 names on the poll-book who judges. About the time the polls were closed, these were -voters when the census was taken three months strangers mounted their horses and got into their wagons afterward, and we are satisfied that not more than 20 legal and cried out :
votes could have been polled at that election. The only "All aboard for Westport and Kansas City.” A num. residents who are known to have voted are named by the ber were recognized as residents of Missouri, and witness, and are 13 in number-thus leaving 584 illegal among them was Samuel H. Woodson, a leading lawyer votes cast in a remote district, where the settlers within of Independence. Of those whose names are on the poll- many miles were acquainted with each other. books, 35 were resident settlers and 226 were not. The total number of white inhabitants in the XIth The election in the IVth District was held at Dr. District, in the month of February, A.D. 1855, including men, women and children, was 36, of whom 24 were | Missouri. On the day of the election, a large number of votersyet the poll-lists in this District show that 245 citizens of Platte County, but chiefly from Weston and votes were cast at this election. For reasons stated Platte City, came in small parties, in wagons and on hereafter in regard to the election on the 30th of March, horseback, to the polls. Among them were several leadyour Committee were unable to procure the attendance ing citizens of that town, and the names of many of them of witnesses from this District. From the records, it are given by the witnesses. They generally insisted clearly appears that the votes cast could not have been upon their right to vote, on the ground that every man by lawful resident voters. The best test, in the absence having a claim in the Territory could vote, no matter of direct proof, by which to ascertain the number of where he lived. All voted who chose. No man was legal votes cast, is by a comparison of the census-roll challenged or sworn. Some of the residents did not vote. with the poll-book-by which it appears that but ? The purpose of the strangers in voting was declared to be resident settlers voted, and 238 votes were illegally and to make Kansas a Slave State. We find by the poll-books fraudulently cast.
that 806 votes were cast of these we find but 87 are on The election in the XIVth District was held at the house the census-rolls as legal voters in February following. of Benjamin Harding, a few miles from the town of St. Your Committee is satisfied from the testimony that not Joseph, Missouri. Before the polls were opened, a large over 100 of those who voted had any right so to do, leav. aumber of citizens of Buchanan County, Missouri, and ing at least 206 illegal votes cast. among them many of the leading citizens of St. Joseph, The election in the XVIth District was held at Leaven. were at the place of voting, and made a majority of the worth. It was then a small village of three or four company present. At the time appointed by the Gov- houses, located on the Delaware Reservation. There ernor for opening the polls, two of the Judges were not were but comparatively few settlers then in the district, there, and it became the duty of the legal voters present but the number rapidly increased afterward. On the to select other judges The judge who was present* day before and on the day of the election, a great many suggested the name of Mr. Waterson as one of the Judges citizens of Platte, Clay and Ray counties crossed the --but the crowd voted down the proposition. Some dis- river-most of them camping in tents and wagons about cussion then arose as to the right of non-residents to vote the town,“ like a camp-meeting.” They were in compafor judges, during which Mr. Bryant was nominated and nies or messes of ten to fifteen in each, and numbered in elected by the crowd. Some one nominated Col. John all several hundred. The ybrought their own provision Scott as the other judge, who was then and is now a and cooked it themselves, and were generally armed. resident of St. Joseph. At that time, he was the City At. Many of them were known by the witnesses, and their torney at that place, and so continued until this spring, pames given, and their names are found upon the pollbut he claimed that the night before he had come to the books. Among them were several persons of influence house of Mr. Bryant, and had engaged boarding for a where they resided in Missouri, who held, or had held, month, and considered himself a resident of Kansas on high official positions in that State. They claimed to be that ground. The judges appointed by the Governor re- residents of the Territory, from the fact that they were fused to put the nomination of Col. Scott to vote, because then present, and insisted upon the right to vote, and did he was not a resident. After some discussion, Judge vote. Their avowed purpose in doing so was to make Leonard, a citizen of Missouri, stepped forward and put Kansas a Slave State. These strangers crowded around the vote himself; and Mr. Scott was declared by him as the polls, and it was with great difficulty that the settlers elected by the crowd, and served as a judge of election could get to the polls. One resident attempted to get to that day. After the election was over, he returned to St. the polls in the afternoon, but was crowded and pulled Joseph, and never since has resided in the Territory. It back. He then went outside of the crowd and hurrahed is manifest that this election of a non-resident lawyer as for Gen. Whitfield, and some of those who did not know a judge was imposed upon the settlers by the citizens of him said," that's a good Pro-Slavery man,” and lifted the State. When the board of judges was thus completed, him over their heads
so that he crawled on their heads the voting proceeded; but the effect of the rule adopted by and put in his vote. A person who saw from the color of the judges allowed many, if not a majority of the non- his ticket that it was not for Gen. Whitfield, cried out, residents, to vote. They claimed that their presence on “He is a damned Abolitionist- let him down ;" and they the ground, especially when they had a claim in the dropped him. Others were passed to the polls in the Territory, gave them a right to vote-under that con. same way, and others crowded up in the best way they struction of the law, they readily, when required, swore could. After this mockery of an election was over, the they were “residents," and then voted. By this evasion, / non-residents returned to their homes in Missouri.' or as nearly as your Committee can ascertain from the testi- j the 312 votes cast, not over 150 were by legal voters. mony, as many as 50 illegal votes were cast in this Dis- The following abstract exhibits the whole number of trict out of 153, the whole number polled.
votes at this election, for each candidate; the number of The election in the XVth District was held at Pense- legal and illegal votes cast in each district; and the num. pan's, on Stranger Creek, a few miles from Weston, 1 ber of legal votes in each district in February following: