« PreviousContinue »
panies to come over to the Territory and vote, and the conducted, and not contested at all. In this district, tha day before, and on the day of election, large bodies of Proclavery party had the majority. Missourians from Platte, Clay, Ray, Charlton, Carrol, Flinton, and Saline counties, Missouri, came into this
XVIIITH DISTRICT. listrict and camped there. They were armed with pistols and bowie-knives, and some with guns and rifles, and
Previous to the election, Gen. David R. Atchison of bad badges of hemp in their button-holes and elsewhere Platte City, Missouri, got up a company of Missourians, about their persons.
and passing through Weston, Missouri, went over into On the morning of the election, there were from 1,000 the Territory. He remained all night at the house of to 1,400 persons present on the ground. Previous to the and then exhibited his arms, of which he had an abundelection, the Missourians endeavored to persuade the two
ance. He proceeded to the Nemaha (XVIIIth) district. Free-State judges to resign, by making threats of personal On his way, he and his party attended à Nominating Conviolence to them, one of whom resigned on the morning vention in the XIVth District, and proposed and caused of election, and the crowd chose another to fill his place. to be nominated a set of candidates in opposition to the But one of the judges, the Free-State judge, would take
wishes of the Pro-Slavery residents of the district. the oath prescribed by the Governor, the other two
that Convention, he said that there were 1,100 men deciding that they had no right to swear any one who coining over from Platte County, and if that wasn't offered to vote, but that all on the ground were entitled enough, they could send 5,000 more--that they came to to vote. The only votes refused were some Delaware vote, and would vote or kill every 6-dd-d Abolitionist Indians, some 30 Wyandot Indians being allowed to
in the Territory. vote.
On the day of election, the Missourians, under Atchi. The Free State men generally did not vote at that elec- son, who were encainped there, came up to the polls in the tion; and no newly-arrived Eastern emigrants were there.
XVIIIth District, taking the oath that they were residents
of the district. The Missourians were all armed with The Fire-State judge of election refused to sign the returns until the words “ by lawful resident voters" were pistols or bowie-knives, and said there were 60 in their stricken out, which was dune, and the returns made in company. But 17 votes given on that day were given
The whole number of votes that way. The election was contested, and a new elec by residents of the district. tion ordered by Gov. Reeder, for the 22d of May.
was 62. The testimony is divided as to the relative strength of
R. L. Kir! one of the candidates, came into the disparties in this district. The whole number of voters in
trict from Missouri about a week before the election, and the district, according to the census returns, was 355 ; | boarded there. He left after the election, and was not at and, according to a very carefully prepared list of voters,
the time a legal resident of the district in which he was prepared for the Pro-slavery candidates and other Pro- elected. No protest was sent to the Governor on account Blavery men, a few days previous to the election, there of threats made against any who should dare to contest were 805 voters in the district, including those who had the election. claims but did not live on them. The whole number of
The following tables embody the result of the examinarotes cast was 964. or those named in the census 106 tion of your Committee in regard to this election. In roted. Your Committee, upon careful examination, are
some of the districts, it was iinpossible to ascertain the satisfied that there were not over 150 legal votes cast, precise number of the legal votes cast, and especially in eaving 814 illegal votes.
the XIVth, XVih, and XVIih Districts.
In such cases, the number of legal and illegal votes cast is stated, after XVIITH DISTRICT.
a careful reëxamination of all the testimony and records The election in this district seems to have been fairly concerning the election :
ABSTRACT OF CENSUS, AND RETURNS OF ELECTION OF MARCH 30, 1855, BY
1 2 8
O Pro-Slavery Votes.
781 818 366
78 877 199 74 84 815 211 17 23 27
6 7 8 9
og 10 Total of Illegal Votes.
EL SEU No. persons resd'ts
232 30 82 15 13 75 82 104 100 25 87 75 48 23
7 11 83 12
I lever so lol!! I lol llall lol
98 104 850) 234 87 75 69 23 828 11 33 239 346
78 306 417 964 59 62
11 11 12 13 14
2:6 412 899
15 16 17
By the election, as conducted, the Pro-Slavery candi-, them, in both the Council and the House, did not " reside dates in every district but the VIIIth representative dis- in” and were not inhabitants of” the district for trict, received a majority of the votes ; and several of which they were elected, as required by the organic law. By that act it was declared to be the true intent and Your Committee here felt it to be their duty not only to meaning of this act to leave the people thereof perfectly inquire into and collect evidence in regard to force and free to form and regulate their domestic institutions fraud attempted and practiced at the elections in the in their own way, subject to the Constitution of the Territory, but also into the facts and pretexts by which United States,
this force and fraud has been excused and justified; and So careful was Congress of the right of popular for this purpose your Committee have allowed the declasovereignty, that to secure it to the people, without a rations of non-resident voters to be given as evidence in single petition from any portion of the country, they their own behalf, also the declarations of all who came removed the restriction against Slavery imposed by the up the Missouri River as emigrants in March, 1855, Missouri Compromise. And yet this right, so carefully whether they voted or not, and whether they came into secured, was thus by force and fraud overthrown by a the Territory at all or not; and also the rumors which portion of the people of an adjoining State.
were circulated among the people of Missouri previous to • The striking difference between this Republic and other the election. The great body of the testimony taken at Republics on this Continent, is not in the provisions of the instance of the sitting Delegate is of this character. constitutions and laws, but that here changes in the ad- When the declarations of parties passing up the river ministration of those laws have been made peacefully and were offered in evidence, your Committee received them quietly through the ballot-box. This invasion is the first upon the distinct statement that they would be excluded · and only one in the history of our Government, by unless the persons making the declarations were by other which an organized force from one State has elected a proof shown to have been connected with the elections. Legislature for another State or Territory, and as such it This proof was not made, and therefore much of this class should have been resisted by the whole executive power of testimony is incompetent by the rules of law, but is of the National Government.
allowed to remain as tending to show the cause of the Your Committee are of the opinion that the Constitu- action of the citizens of Missouri. tion and laws of the United States have invested the The alleged causes of the invasion of March, 1855, are President and Governor of the Territory with ample included in the following charges : power for this purpose. They could only act after re- 1. That the New England Aid Society of Boston was ceiving authentic information of the facts, but when re- then importing into the Territory large numbers of men, ceived, whether before or after the certificates of election merely for the purpose of controlling the elections. That were granted, this power should have been exercised to they came without women, childreu, or baggage, went its fullest extent. It is not to be tolerated that a legisla- into the Territory, voted, and returned again. tive body thus selected should assume or exercise any II. That men were hired in the Eastern or Northern legislative functions; and their enactments should be States, or induced to go into the Territory, solely to vote, regarded as null and void; nor should the question of and not to settle, and by so doing to make it a Free State. ics legal existence as a legislative body be determined by
III. That the Governor of the Territory purposely postitseil, as that would be allowing the criminal to judge of poned the day of election to allow this emigration to his own crime. In section twenty-two of the organic' act arrive, and notified the Emigrant Aid Society, and perit is provided, that the persons having the bighest num- sons in the Eastern States, of the day of election, before ber of legal votes in each of said Council-districts for he gave notice to the people of Missouri and the Territory. members of the Council, shall be declared by the Governor That these charges were industriously circulated ; that to be duly elected to the Council, and the persons having grossly exaggerated statements were made in regard to the highest number of legal votes for the House of Repre- them; that the newspaper press and leading men in sentatives, shall be declared by the Governor duly public meetings in Western Missouri, aided in one case by elected members of said House." The proclamation of a Chaplain of the United States Army, gave currency the Governor required a verified notice of a contest when and credit to them, and thus excited the people, and oue was made, to be filed with him within four days induced many well-meaning citizens of Missouri to march after the election, Within that time, he did not obtain into the Territory to meet and repel the alleged Eastern information as to force or fraud in any except the fol- paupers and Abolitionists, is fully proven by many wito lowing districts, and in these there were material defects in the returns of election. Without deciding upon his But these charges are not sustained by the proof. power to set aside elections for force and fraud, they In April, 1854, the General Assembly of Massachusetts were set aside for the following reasons :
passed an act entitled “ An act to incorporate the NassaIn the Ist District, because the words “ by lawful resi- chusetts Emigrant Aid Society.” The object of the Si ciety, dent voters," were stricken from the return.
as declared in the first section of this act, was "for the In the IId District, because the oath was administered purpose of assisting emigrants to settle in the West." by G. W. Taylor, who was not authorized to administer an The moneyed capital of the corporation was not to Dath,
exceed five millions of dollars ; but no more than fi ur per In the IIId District, because material erasures from the cent. could be assessed during the year 1854, and no printed form of the oath were purposely made.
more than ten per cent. in any one year thereafter. No In the IVth District, for the same reason.
organization was perfected, or proceedings had, under In the VIIth District, because the Judges were not sworn
this law. at all.
On the 24th day of July, 1854, certain persons in Bos. In
XIth District, becaus the returns show the ton, Massachusetts, concluded articles of agreement and election to have been held viva voce instead of by ballot. association for an Emigrant Aid Society. The purpose of
In the XVIth District, because the words by lawful this association was declared to be “ assisting emigrants residence" were stricken from the returns.
to settle in the West.” Under these articles of associa
tion, each stockholder was individually liable. To avoid ABSTRACT OF THE RETURNS OF ELECTION OF this difficulty, an application was made to the General MAY 22, 1855.
Assembly of Massachusetts for an act of incorporation, which was granted. On the 21st day of February, 1855, an act was passed to incorporate the New England Emigrant Aid Company. The purposes of this act were declared to be “directing emigration westward, and
aiding and providing accommodation for emigrants after PLACES OF VOTING.
arriving at their place of destination." The capital stock of the corporation was not to exceed one million of dollars. Under this charter, a company was organized.
Your Committee have examined some of its officers, and a portion of its circulars and records, to ascertain what has been done by it. The public attention at that time was
directed to the Territory of Kansas, and emigration natu1 Luwrence..
288 18 306 rally tended in that direction. To ascertain its character 2 Douglas
127 127 and resources, this Company sent its agent into it, and the 3 Stinson's..
148 1 149 information thus obtained was published. The Company 7 "110)".
79 made arrangements with various lines of transportation to 8 Council Grove.
33 reduce the expense of emigration into the Territory, and 16 Leavenworth....
715 procured tickets at the reduced rates. Applications were
made to the Company by persons desiring to emigrate; Total..
5601 802 1409 and when they were numerous enough to form a party of
convenient size, tickets were sold to them at the reduced Although the fraud and force in other districts were
rates. An agent acquainted with the route was selected to equally great as in these, yet, as the Governor had no
accompany them. Their baggage was checked, and als information in regard to them, ho issued certificates ac- trouble and danger of loss to the emigrant in this way cording to the returns,
No. of District.
Under these arrangements, companies went into the the Territory, as a means to control the election and es. Territory in the Fall of 1854, under the articles of associa- tablish Slavery there. tion referred to. The company did not pay any portion of The real purpose is avowed and illustrated by the testithe fare, nor furnish any personal or real property to the niony and conduct of Colonel John Scott, of St. Joseph's, emigrant. The company, during 1855, sent into the Terri- Missouri
, who acted as the attorney for the sitting deletory from eight to ten saw-mills, purchased one hotel in gate before your Committee. The following are extracts Kansas City, which they subsequently sold, built one hotel from his deposition : at Lawrence, and owned one other building in that place. In some cases, to induce them to make improvements, trict, on the 29. h of November, 1854, I had been a resident of
" Prior to the election in Burr-Oak precinct, in the XIVh Distown lots were given to them by town associations in this Missouri, and I then determined, if I found it necessary, to beTerritory. They held no property of any other kind or come a resident of Kansas Territory. On the day previous to description. They imposed no condition upon their emi- that election, I settled up my board at my boarding house, in grants, and did not inquire into their political, religious, or St. Joseph's, Missouri, and went over to the Territory, and social opinions. The total amount expended by them, iri- look boarding with Mr. Bryant, near whose house the polls cluding the salaries of their agents and officers, and the my power, by merely determining to do so, to become a resi
were held the
next day, for one month, so that I might have it in expenses incident to all organizations, was less than dent of the Territory on the day of election. $100,000.
“When my name was proposed as a Judge of Election, ob Their purposes, so far as your Committee can ascertain, jections were made by two persons only;
I then were lawful, and contributed to supply those wants most publicly informed those present, that I had a claim in the Terexperienced in the settlement of a new country.
ritory; that I had taken board in the Territory for a month; î'he only persons or company who enigrated into the and legal voter in the Territory, and that I would do so, if I
and that I could, at any moment, become an actual resident Territory under the auspices of the Emigrant Aid Society concluded at any time during the day that my vote would be in 1855, prior to the election in March, was a party of 159 necessary to carry that precinct in favor of the Pro-Slavery persons, whio came under the charge of Charles Robin- candidate for delegate to Congress. . . I did not dur
ing the day consider it necessary to become a resident of the In this party, there were 67 women and children. They Territory for the purpose mentioned, and did not vote nor offer
at came as actual settlers, intending to make their homes in
“I held the office of City-Attorney for St. Joseph's at that the Territory, and for no other purpose, They had about time, and had held it for iwo or three years previously, and their persons bu little baggage; usually sufficient cloth- continued to hold it until this spring.
I voted at ing in a carpet-sack for a short time. Their personal ef- an election in St. Joseph's, in the spring of 1855, and was refects, such as clothing, furniture, etc., were put into trunks appointed City-Attorney: The question of Slavery was put in and boxes; and for convenience in selecting, and cheap- issue at the election
of November, 1854, to ihe same extent as ness in transporting, was marked “ Kansas party bag- garded as the Pro-Slavery candidate for the Pro-Slavery party:
in every election in this Territory. Gen. Whitfield was regage, care B. Slater, St. Louis." Generally, this was con- I regarded the question of Slavery as the primarily prominent signed as freight, in the usual way, to the care of a com- issue at that election, and, so far as I know, all parties agreed mission merchant. This party had, in addition to the usual in making that question the issue of that election. allowance of one hundred pounds to each passenger, a
* It is my intention, and the intention of a g, eat many other large quantity of baggage on which the respective owners is to be determined upon by the people of this Territory in the
Missou, ians now resident in Missouri, uchenerer the Slavery issue paid the usual extra freight. Each passenger or party adoption of the State Constitution, to temore to this Territory in paid his or their own expenses; and the only benefit they time to arquire the right to become legal voters upon that question. derived from the Society, not shared by all the people of The leading purpose of our intended removal to the Te ritory is to the Territory, was the reduction of about $7 in the determine the domestic institutions of this Ter, ito y, when it comes price of the fare, the convenience of traveling in a com
to be a State, and we would not come only for thut purpose, and pany instead of alone, and the cheapness and facility of there are a g eat many in Ilissouri who are so situated."
would never think of coming here but for thut purpose. I believe transporting their freight through regular agents. Subsequently, many emigrants, being either disappointed with The invasion of March 30th left both parties in a state the country or its political condition, or deceived by the of excitement, tending directly to produce violence. The statements made by the newspapers and by the agents of successful party was lawless and reckless while assuming the Society, became dissatisfied, and returned, both before the name of the “ Law and Order" party. The other and after the election, to their old homes. Most of them party, at first surprised and confounded, was greatly irriare now settlers in the Territory. Some few voted at the tated, and some resolved to prevent the success of the inelection in Lawrence, but the number was small. The vasion. In some districts, as before stated, protests were names of these emigrants have been ascertained, and sent to the Governor; in others, this was prevented by
of them were found upon the poll-books. This threats; in others, by the want of time, only four days company of peaceful emigrants, moving with their house- being allowed by the proclamation for this purpose; and hold goods, was distorted into an invading horde of pauper in others, by the belief that a new election would bring a Abolitionists, who were, with others of a similar character, new invasion. About the same time, all classes of men to control the domestic institutions of the Territory, and commenced bearing deadly weapons about the person, a then overturn those of a neighboring powerful State. practice which has continued to this time. Under these
In regard to the second charge: There is no proof that circumstances, a slight or accidental quarrel produced any man was either hired or induced to come into the unusual violence, and lawless acts became frequent. This Territory from any Free State, merely to vote. The en- evil condition of the public mind, was further increased by tire emigration in March, 1855, is estimated at 500 persons, acts of violence in Western Missouri, where, in April, a including men, women, and children. They came on newspaper press, called The Parksville Luminary, was steamboats up the Missouri River, in the ordinary course destroyed by a mob. of emigration. Many returned for causes similar to those About the same time, Malcolm Clark assaulted Cole before stated; but the body of them are now residents. McCrea at a squatter meeting in Leavenworth, and was The only persons of those who were connected by proof shot by McCrea in alleged self-defense. with the election, were some who voted at the Big Blue On the 17th day of May, William Phillips, a lawyer of Precinct in the Xth District, and at Pawnee, in the ixth Leavenworth, was first notified to leave; and upon his reDistrict. Their purpose and character are stated in a fusal, was forcibly seized, taken across the river, and carformer part of this report.
ried several miles into Missouri, and then tarred and The third charge is entirely groundless. The organic feathered, and one side of his head shaved, and other law requires the Governor to cause an enumeration of the gross indignities put upon his person. inhabitants and legal voters to be made; and that he ap- Previous to this outrage, a public meeting was held, at portion the members of the Council and House, according which resolutions were unanimously passed, looking to to this enumeration. For reasons stated by persons en- unlawful violence, and grossly intolerant in their characgaged in taking the census, it was not completed until the ter. The right of free speech upon the subject of Slavery early part of March, 1855. At that time, the day of hold. was characterized as a disturbance of the peace and quiet ing the election had not been, and could not have been, of the community, and as “circulating incendiary sentinamed by the Governor. So soon as practicable after the ments.” They say “to the peculiar friends of northern returns were brought in, he issued his proclamation for fanatics,” “Go home and do your treason where you may an election, and named the earliest day, consistent with find sympathy." Among other resolves is the following: due notice, as the day of election. The day on which the "Resolved, That the institution of Slavery is known and reelection was to be held was a matter of conjecture all cognized in this Territory; and we repel the doctrine that it is over the country; but it was generally known that it would a moral ard political evil, and we huri back with scorn upon be in the latter part of March. The precise day was not its slanderous authors the charge of inhumanity;
and we warn known by any one until the proclamation issued. It was and sow the seeds of discord between the master and the
persons not to come to our peaceful firesides to slander is, not known to the agents of the Emigrant Aid Society in vant ; for, as much as we deprecate the necessity to which we Boston on the 13th of March, 1855, when the party of emi. may be driven, we cannot be responsible for the consegrants before referred to, left.
quences." Your Committee are satisfied that these charges were made the mere pretext to induce an armed invasion into ob84:73 and eport all such persons as shall
Committee of Vigilance of 30 men was appointed" to
the expression of abolition sentiments, produce disturb of the new council were to be elected. The new legisla. ance to the quiet of the citizens, or danger to their domes- ture is required to meet on the first Monday in January, tic relations; and all such persons so offending shall be 1859. Thus, by the terms of these “laws," the people notified, and made to leave the Territory.”
have no control whatever over either the legislature, the The meeting was "ably and eloquently addressed by executive, or the judicial departments of the Territorial Judge Lecompte, Colonel J. N. Burns of Western Missouri, government until a time before which, by the natural proand others." Thus the head of the judiciary in the Terri- gress of population, the Territorial government will be su. tory not only assisted at a public and bitterly partisan perseded by a State government. meeting, whose direct tendency was to produce violence and No session of the legislature is to be held during 1856, disorder, but, before any law is passed in the Territory, he but the members of the House are to be elected in October prejudges the character of the domestic institutions which of that year. A candidate, to be eligible at this election, the people of the Territory were, by their organic law," left must swear to support the fugitive slave law; and each perfectly free to form and regulate in their own way. judge of election, and each voter, if challenged, must take
On this committee were several of those who held certi- the same oath. The same oath is required of every officer ficates of election as members of the legislature; some of elected or appointed in the Territory, and of every attorthe others were then and still are residents of Missouri; | ney admitted to practice in the courts. and many of the committee have since been appointed to A portion of the militia is required to muster on the day the leading offices in the Territory, one of which is the of election. "Every free white male citizen of the United sheriffalty of the county. Their first act was that of mob- States, and every free male Indian who is made a citizen bing Phillips.
by treaty or otherwise, and over the age of twenty-one Subsequently, on the 25th of May, A.D. 1855, a public years, and who shall be an inhabitant of the Territory meeting was held, at which R. R. Rees, a member elect of and of the county and district in which he offers to vote, the council; presided. The following resolutions, offered and shall have paid a Territorial tax, shall be a qualified by Judge Payne, a member elect of the house, were unani- elector for all elective offices." Two classes of persons mously adopted :
were thus excluded, who, by the organic act, were allowed “Resolved, That we heartily indorse the action of the commit- to vote, viz. : those who would not swear to the oath retee of citizens that shaved, tarred and feathered, rode on a quired, and those of foreign birth who had declared on rail, and had sold by a negro, William Phillips, the moral oath their intention to become citizens. Any man of perjurer:
Resolved, That we return our thanks to the committee for proper age who was in the Territory on the day of elecfaithfully performing
the trust enjoined upon them by the Pro- tion, and who had paid one dollar as a tax to the sheriff, Slavery party
who was required to be at the polls to receive it, could “Resolved, that the committee be now discharged.
vote as an "inhabitant," although he had breakfasted in Resolved That we severely condemn those Pro-Slavery Missouri, and intended to return there for supper. There men who, from mercenary motives, are calling upon the Pro- can be no doubt that this unusual and unconstitutional Slavery party to submit without further action. "Resolved, That in order to secure peace and harmony to sion of the popular will in the election of members of the
provision was inserted to prevent a full and fair expresthe community, we now solemnly declare that the Pro. Slavery party will stand firmly by and carry out the resolu- house, or to control it by non-residents. tions reported by the committee appointed for that purpose on All jurors are required to be selected by the sheriff, the memorable 30.h."
and “no person who is conscientiously opposed to the The act of moral perjury here referred to is the swear- holding of slaves, or who does not admit the right to ing by Phillips to a truthful protest in regard to the elec- hold slaves in the Territory, shall be a juror in any tion of March 30, in the XVIth District.
cause” affecting the right to hold slaves, or relating to The members receiving their certificates of the Governor slave property. as members of the General Assembly of the Territory, met
The Slave Code, and every provision relating to at Pawnee, the place appointed by the Governor, on the slaves, are of a character intolerant and unusual even 2d of July, A.D. 1855. Their proceedings are stated in for that class of legislation. The character and conthree printed books, herewith submitted, entitled respec
duct of the men appointed to hold office in the Terri. tively, “The Statutes of the Territory of Kansas," "The tory contributed very much to produce the events Journal of the Council of the Territory of Kansas,' and which followed. Thus Samuel J. Jones was appointed “The Journal of the House of Representatives of the Ter- sheriff of the county of Douglas. which included withiu ritory of Kansas."
it the Ist and IId Election Districts. He had made himYour Committee do not regard their enactments as valid self peculiarly obnoxious to the settlers by his conduct laws. A legislature thus imposed upon a people cannot on the 30th of March in the IId District, and by his affect their political rights. Such an attempt to do so, if burning the cabins of Joseph Oakley and Samuel Smith. successful, is virtually an overthrow of the organic law, the 1st day of October, 1855, was provided for, with the
An election for delegate to Congress, to be held on and reduces the people of the Territory to the condition of vassals to a neighboring State. To avoid the evils of
same rules and regulations as were applied to other anarchy, no armed or organized resistance to them should elections. The Free-State men took no part in this be made, but the citizens should appeal to the ballot-box election, having made arrangements for holding an at public elections, to the federal judiciary, and to Con-election on the 9th of the same month. The citizens of gress, for relief. Such, from the proof, would
have been Missouri attended at the election of the 1st of October, the course of the people, but for the nature of these enact
some paying the dollar tax, and others not being rements and the manner in which they are enforced. Their quired to pay it. They were present and voted at the character and their execution have been so intimately voting places of Atchison and Doniphan, in Atchison connected with one branch of this investigation-that re- County; at Greene Springs, Johnson County; at Willow lating to “violent and tumultuous proceedings in the Ter- Springs, Franklin, and Lecompton, in Douglas County; ritory"—that we were compelled to examine them.
at Fort Scott, Bourbon County; at Baptiste Paola, The “laws" in the statute-books are general and spe- Lykins County, where some Indians voted, some whites cial; the latter are strictly of a local character, relating to paying the $1 tax for them; at Leavenworth City, and bridges, roads, and the like. The great body of the gene- at Kickapoo City, Leavenworth County; at the latter ral laws are exact transcripts from the Missouri code. To place, under the lead of Gen. B. F. Stringfellow and Col. make them in some cases conform to the organic act, Lewis Barnes of Missouri. From two of the election separate acts were passed, defining the meaning of words! precints at which it was alleged there was illegal voting Thus the word “State" is to be understood as meaning
-viz., Delaware and Wyandotte--your Committee “ Territory;" the words“ County Court" shall be construed failed to obtain the attendance of witnesses Your to mean the board of commissioners transacting county Committee did not deem it necessary, in regard to this business, or the Probate Court, according to the intent election, to enter into details, as it was manifest that, thereof. The words “ Circuit Court" to mean “District from there being but one candidate-Gen. WhitfieldCourt."
he must have received a majority of the votes cast. The material differences in the Missouri and Kansas sta- This election, therefore, depends not on the number or tutes are upon the following subjects: The qualifications character of the votes received, but upon the validity of voters and of members of the legislative assembly; the of the laws under which it was held. Sufficient testiofficial oath of all officers, attorneys, and voters; the mode mony was taken to show that the voting of citizens of of selecting officers and their qualifications; 'the slave Missouri was practiced at this election, as at all former code, and the qualifications of jurors.
elections in the Territory. The following table will exUpon these subjects, the provisions of the Missouri code hibit the result of the testimony as regards the number are such as are usual in many of the States. But by the
of legal and illegal votes at this election. The county of “ Kansas Statutes" every office in the Territory, execu
Marshall embraces the same territory as was included in tive and judicial; was to be appointed by the legislature, the XIth District; and the reasons before stated indior by some officer appointed by it. These appointments cate that the great majority of the votes then cast were were not merely to meet a temporary exigency, but were
either illegal or fictitious. In the counties to which our to hold over two regular elections, and until after the examination extended, there were — illegal votes cast, general election in October, 1857, at which the members as near as the proof will enable us to determine.
While these enactments of the alleged legislative as- | and delegates were selected in compliance with its recomsembly were being made, a movement was instituted to mendations. form a State government, and apply for admission into They met at Topeka, on the 19th day of September, the Union as a State. The first step taken by the people 1855. By their resolutions, they provided for the appoint. of the Territory, in consequence of the invasion of Marchment of an Executive Committee, to consist of seven per. 80, 1855, was the circulation for signature of a graphic sons, who were required to keep a record of their proanl truthful memorial to Congress. Your Committee ceedings, and shall have a general superintendence of find that every allegation in this memorial has been sus- the affairs of the Territory so far as regards the organizatained by the testimony. No further step was taken, as tion of the State Government.” They were required to it was hoped that some action by the General Government take steps for an election to be held on the second Tueswould protect them in their rights. When the alleged day of the October following, under regulations imposed legislative assembly proceeded to construct the series of by that Committee," for members of a Convention to enactmen eferred to, the settlers were of opini that form a Constitution, adopt a Bill of Rights for the people submission to them would result in depriving them of the of Kansas, and take all needful measures for organizing rights secured to them by the organic law. Their politi- a State Government, preparatory to the admission of cal condition was freely discussed in the Territory during Kansas into the Union as a State.” The rules prescribed the summer of 1855. Several meetings were held in were such as usually govern elections in most of the reference to holding a convention to form a State gov- States of the Union, and in most respects were similar to ernment, and to apply for admission into the Union as a those contained in the proclamation of Gov. Reeder for State Public opinion gradually settled in favor of such the election of March 30, 1855. an application to the Congress to meet in December, The Executive Committee appointed by that Conven1855. The first general meeting was held in Lawrence on tion accepted their appointment, and entered upon the the 15th of August, 1855.
discharge of their duties by issuing a proclamation adThe following preamble and resolutions were then dressed to the legal voters of Kansas, requesting them to passed :
meet at their several precincts, at the time and places “Whereas, The people of Kansas have been, since its named in the proclamation, then and there to cast their settlement, and now are, without any law-making power, ballots for members of a Constitutional Convention, to therefore be it
meet at Topeka on the 4th Tuesday of October then “ Resolved, That we, the people of Kansas Territory, in mass next. meeting assembled, irrespecti of party distinctions, influ
The proclamation designated the places of elections, enced by common necessity, and greatly desirous of promoting the common good, do hereby call upon and request all bona fide appointed judges, recited the qualifications of voters and citizens of Kansas Territory, of whatever political views or pre- the apportionment of members of the Convention. dilections, to consult together in their respective Election Dis- After this proclamation was issued, public meetings tricts and in mass convention or otherwise, elect three delegates were held in every district in the Territory, and in nearly for each representative to which said Election District is en- every precinct. The State movement was a general titled in the House of Representatives of the Legislative Assem: topic of discussion throughout the Territory, and there bly, by proclamation of Governor Reeder, of date 19th of March, 1855; said delegates to assemble in convention, at the
was but little opposition exhibited to it. Elections were town of Topeka, on the 19th day of September, 1855, then and held at the time and places designated, and the returns there to consider and determine upon all subjects of public in- were sent to the Executive Committee. terest, and particularly upon that having reference to the The result of the election was proclaimed by the Execuspeedy formation of a State Constitution, with an intention of tive Committee, and the members elect were required to an immediate application to be admitted as a State into the meet on the 230 day of October, 1855, at Topeka. In Union of the United States of America."
pursuance of this proclamation and direction, the ConOther meetings were held in various parts of the Terri. stitutional Convention met at the time and place aptory, which indorsed the action of the Lawrence meeting, pointed, and formed a State Constitution. A memorial