|KANSAS COLLECTION BOOKS|
The Second Biennial Session of the Kansas Legislature, John P. St. John, Governor; David A. Finney, President of the Senate; Sidney Clarke, Speaker of the House, met January 14, adjourned March 12, 1879.
January 15, a select committee of the Senate, consisting of Senators Morrill, Gillett and Greene submitted the following resolutions, relating the late Senator Sheldon:
Resolved, That this Senate receives the sad intelligence of the death of the Hon. O. H. Sheldon, late a member of this body, with deep and abiding grief.
They were adopted on the 22d, and Senators E. N. Morrill, Almerin Gillett, P. I. B. Ping, H. M. Greene, Charles Robinson, I. O. Savage and L. E. Finch - the successor of Senator Sheldon - offered appropriate remarks on the occasion.
The following is an extract from Senator Morrill's remarks:
In the death of Senator Sheldon, this Senate has lost one of its ablest and purest, members, and the State one of its worthiest citizens. But he is not dead!
The following is from Senator Gillett:
From A. D. 1856 to A. D. 1876, through twenty years of hard and bitter struggles, he saw Kansas acknowledged at last as one of the most prosperous and promising of the States of our Union. Many of us well remember with what glowing enthusiasm Mr. Sheldon was wont to speak of his Kansas home.
Senator Greene, in his tribute to his worth, said:
Always an earnest, untiring and consistent partisan, he was easily elected to represent his county in the Territorial Legislature of 1860, as a member of the House. That body numbered thirty-seven Representatives. Of these, but few remain to-day. I recognize only the names of S. N. Wood, W. A. Rankin, and Paul R. Brooks, as now at all connected with public life. One of the most important measures of the session was the passage of an act prohibiting slavery and involuntary servitude in Kansas. Vetoed by Gov. Medary, in a message exhaustively and apologetically treating the whole question, our friend voted to pass the bill, the Governor's objections to the contrary notwithstanding, being thus privileged to stand at one of the turning-points of our history, and assist in directing the rising tide of empire along the unimpeded channels of free government, on the haven of State sovereignty.
Ex. Gov. Senator Robinson said:
In the infancy of Kansas, when the foundations of our State were being laid, and her institutions established, the name of O. H. Sheldon was a tower of strength, and he was ever true, and most efficient in the cause of free Kansas. Not only that, but when the wave of corruption swept over our young State, more blighting in its effects, if possible, than the curse of human slavery, against which successful war had been waged, no smell of fire was found upon his garments. He lived the life of a pure patriot, and his memory will ever be held sacred by his early and late associates.
Senator Savage said:
My acquaintance with him commenced on this floor, and during all our intercourse I remember him only as an earnest and devoted patriot, a kind and genial companion, a man of noble and generous impulses, one of whom even the suspicion of dishonesty never attached. Of him it can in truth be said, he was an honest man. He was also a man entirely free from vanity. He never wearied this body with long speeches; never spoke for mere show, but always for a purpose.
Senator Ping, in a elaborate tribute, makes use of the following quotations:
He shaped his own future, and was the architect of his own fortune. Listen to the poet:"There is the marble, there is the chisel!
Senator Finch, in concluding his remarks, said: "I shall attempt to so discharge my duties as to leave the position of Senator to my successor as pure and unsullied as it was bequeathed to me." This is his tribute:
In many respects O. H. Sheldon was a remarkable man, and his life was to a large extent not only a life of great usefulness, but a life of a series of modest successes.
January 16, the Legislature met in joint session to hear Gov. St. John orally deliver his first biennial message. In referring to the 265,000 acres of school lands secured to the State from the United States on account of Indian reservations through the State Agent, Hon. Samuel J. Crawford, he mentions the Commissioners appointed to select them: J. C. McQuary, of Saline County; O. E. Morse, of Linn; L. B. Snow, of Butler; J. E. Stone, of Montgomery; L. A. Thrasher, of Allen, and G. C. West, of Labette, and reports the cost of making the selection, $3,098.29, which amount had been borrowed by the State officers on their personal responsibility.
In relation to the Price Raid Claims, the Governor said:
I can make no recommendation that if adopted by the Legislature would in my judgment reflect more credit upon the State, and mete out greater justice to the citizens directly interested in this matter, than to ask that a committee be appointed to ascertain as nearly as possible the amount of scrip connected with this matter outstanding and unpaid; and the adoption of such measures during the present session, as will provide the necessary means for the prompt payment of whatever balance may be so ascertained, remembering that nothing inspires greater confidence in respect for, and devotion to, a State, than the prompt, discharge of every just obligation to its citizens.
On railroad fares and freights, he said:
There are about 2,300 miles of railroads in operation in Kansas, the assessed value of which, as shown by the report of the Auditor of State, is $15,525,033.25. While it is true that these railroads have contributed largely to the wealth, prosperity and progress of our State, it is also equally true that not only our people, but the State and General Government, have contributed liberally toward their construction and support.
On January 21, George W. Martin was for the fourth time elected State Printer, having received 87 votes in the Joint convention; out of 168: 64 in the House, 23 in the Senate.
Senatorial Election - Each House balloted for Senator January 28. The political complexion of the Senate was 36 Republicans; 2 Democrats, 2 Nationals; of the House of Representatives, 89 Republicans, 21 Democrats, 19 Nationals. The vote in the Senate was as follows: Senator Ingalls, Republican, 17 votes; Chief Justice Horton, Republican, 2; Ex-Gov. Anthony, Republican, 6; Congressman Phillips, Republican, 4; Marshall B. F. Simpson, Republican, 8; Judge W. P. Campbell, Republican, 3; Ex-Congressmen, Goodin, Democrat, 2; D. P. Mitchell, National, 2. The House vote was as follows: Ingalls, 47; Horton, 1; Anthony, 20; Phillips, 7; Simpson, 10, Campbell, 3; Goodin, 20; Mitchell, 18; Ex-Senator Pomeroy, 2.
The vote on the successive days was as follows:
======================================== January 29. ========================== Senate. House. Total ======================================== Ingalls... 17 47 64 Horton.... 2 1 3 Anthony... 6 20 26 Phillips.. 4 10 14 Simpson... 6 11 17 Campbell.. 2 2 4 Goodin.... 2 20 22 Mitchell.. 2 16 18 Pomeroy... . 2 2 ---------------------------------------
On the final ballot, Senator Ingalls' vote received in the Senate was 19 Republican, 2 Democrat, 1 National; in the House, 53 Republican, 5 Democrat, 6 National - in all, 72 Republicans, 7 Democrats and 7 Nationals gave him their votes.
Judge Horton's vote in the Senate was made up of 17 Republicans, 1 National; in the House, 36 Republicans, 14 Democrats, 13 Nationals.
On the 6th of February, Hon. Dexter E. Clapp, of Woodson, arose to a question of privilege, offered the following resolution, and moved its adoption:
Whereas, It is charged that during the progress of the late Senatorial election, acts of bribery and corruption were resorted to, to influence the votes of members of this House for United States Senator; and
Speaker Clarke ruled that the substitute was not in order, not being germane to Mr. Clapp's resolution.
Hon. W. R. Biddle, of Linn, offered the following as an amendment:
After the word "Resolved," add "by the House of Representatives, the Senate concurring therein." Also strike out the following words: "A committee of five members be appointed," and insert "The Committee of State Affairs of the Senate, and the Committee on State Affairs of the House, as a joint committee."
This was lost by a vote of 61 to 63, and the preamble and resolutions offered by Mr. Clapp were adopted by a vote of 68 to 56.
Speaker Clarke on February 7, announced the committee. It consisted of Hon. A. M. F. Randolph, of Coffey; A. W. Callen, of Davis; John Hall, of Neosho; R. D. Hartshorne, of Neosho; and J. H. Keller, of Jackson.
February 12, the House adopted the following resolution:
Resolved, That the Committee on Investigation be and it is hereby authorized and instructed as follows: That whenever in the progress of its investigation, any testimony shall have been offered and taken by said Committee, affecting the honor and integrity of any member of this House, or any of the late Senatorial candidates, such members (or Senatorial candidates) shall be notified, and shall be permitted to appear in person and defend against the same, to the end that the facts may be known, and justice be done in the premise.
February 13, the committee met, organized and issued subpoenas for witnesses. The following-named persons were examined, and their testimony was reduced to writing.
G. L. White, J. S. Danford, W. S. Wait, H. T. Anderson, C. J. Brown, T. J. Raybell, J. B. Clogston, H. C. Fisler, Frank Playter, E. W. Majors, F. M. Shaw, E. H. Brown, J. A. Hossack, John Francis, J. S. Merritt, P. I. B. Ping, J. R. Hallowell, J. C. Wilson, C. H. Miller, T. P. Gable, J. G. Pangborn, George A. Eddy, George T. Bevins, W. R. Henderson, John M. Hutchison, John Puterbaugh, William M. Congdon, N. H. Coates, S. F. Toller, George W. McClintick, R. B. Shadduck, Charles Collins, John D. Knox, C. E. Faulkner, S. E. Sheldon, A. A. Thomas, S. N. Wood, Joseph Donahue, George F. Sharitt, T. B. Ellison, R. B. Armstrong, John Bissell, L. M. Briggs and S. M. Strickler.
On this list two were State Senators, 22 were members of the House of Representatives. The committee ceased to take testimony March 6. Not all the witnesses summoned were examined for want of time.
Committee's Report. - There was a report form Mr. Randolph, one from Mr. Hall and one signed by Messrs. Callen, Keller and Mr. Hartshorne.
Mr. Randolph found:
l. That the charge that during the progress of the Senatorial election, acts of bribery and corruption were resorted to with intent to influence the votes of members of this House for United States Senator is sustained, as fully appears from the testimony of G. L. White, J. B. Logston, T. J. Raybell, George W. McClintick, W. S. Wait, H. T. Anderson, J. A. Hossack, Frank Plater, E. H. Brown, E. W. Majors, H. C. Fisler and other witnesses.
Mr. Hall was of the opinion that a further investigation should be had, in a proper tribunal, concerning all of said transactions, together with all the various charges that have been made to the committee concerning the subjects intrusted to them for investigation, and which, for want of time, have been wholly neglected or only partially considered. He deemed Hon. J. A. Hossack, a member from Crawford, unworthy to sit as a member of the House.
Messrs. Callen, Keller and Hartshorne said:
We find, from the testimony taken, that Hon. John J. Ingalls, the recently-elected United States Senator, used no corrupt means to secure his election of the United States Senate, and that none of the late Senatorial candidates was guilty of bribery or corruption in the late Senatorial election.
In paper submitted by Mr. Hartshorne, he said:
The trust reposed by our National constitution in the Legislatures of the several State to elect, by their sovereign franchise, worthy persons to represent the honor and sovereignty of the great Commonwealth in the National Congress, is one of the highest and most sacred trusts known to our system of government, and around its administration the highest and strongest legislative safeguards should be placed. The Senatorial elector should live in an atmosphere of purity; his person should be unapproachable, and his conclusions and judgment should be held as sacred as the deliberations of the juror in the box, or of the Judge upon the bench.
The following, submitted by Messrs. Callen, Keller and Hartshorne, of the investigating committee, was adopted:
Resolved, That the Committee on Investigation be directed to forthwith furnish the State Printer a full and complete copy of all testimony by it taken under House resolution adopted February 6, 1879, and its reports thereon, and that said committee deposit all the original testimony subscribed to by the witnesses with the Secretary of State, for preservation of his office.
March 8, Mr. Wait, of Linn, offered the following resolution, which was adopted:
Resolved, That when the reports of the investigating committee, and the testimony taken by said committee in the progress of the investigation be published, that the Secretary of State be and hereby is instructed to send by mail to each member of the Senate and House of Representatives four copies thereof.
The following resolution, offered by Mr. Randolph, was adopted:
Resolved, That the Chief Clerk of this House forthwith furnish a certified copy of all the testimony taken before the Investigating Committee, and its report thereon, to the State Printer for publication; and that the committee be relieved from further duty, under and in pursuance of the resolution, adopted March 7, in reference to the same subject.
A memorial, signed by thirty-six members of the Kansas House of Representatives, divided politically, 21 Republicans, 10 Democrats and 5 Nationals, was sent to the Senate of the United States, and referred to the Committee on Privileges and Elections, March 19. Its introductory paragraph reads as follows:
The undersigned, members of the Legislature of the State of Kansas, respectfully represent that they have good reason to believe that Hon. John J. Ingalls, who has received a certificate of election as United States Senator from the said State of Knasas, for six years from the 4th of March, 1879, secured his election by acts of bribery and corruption, and that by himself and by his agents, acts of bribery and corruption were resorted to to induce a large number of members of the Legislature to vote for said Ingalls.
The Committee on Privileges and Elections in the United States Senate consisted of Senators James E. Bailey, of Tennessee, Benjamin H. Hill of George, Francis Kernan, of New York, Eli Saulsbury, of Delaware (Chairman), Zebulon B. Vance, of North Carolina, Democrats; Angus Cameron, of Wisconsin, George F. Hoar, of Massachusetts, John A. Logan, of Illinois, Republicans. Senator Logan succeeded Senator Ingalls on the committee, the latter resigning the position after this investigation commenced. A sub-committee, consisting of Chairman Saulsbury, Senators Bailey, Vance, Cameron and Logan, commenced an investigation of the charges made by the memorialists, at the Shawnee County Court House in Topeka, September 22, and adjourned October 8, to meet at Washington December 15. The memorialists were represented by L. F. Eggers, of Ellis County, F. S. Strumbaugh, of Rush, Samuel A. Riggs, of Lawrence, and William C. Webb, of Topeka; the counsel for respondent consisted of Aaron S. Everest, of Atchison, Thomas P. Fenlon, of Leavenworth, John Martin, George R. Peck and A. L. Williams, of Topeka.
At the date of adjournment, the investigation was re-opened at Washington. John L. Thompson, of Chicago, appeared as counsel for the Western Union Telegraph Company. Eugene L. Smith, of Topeka, manager of the telegraph company, having refused to furnish the telegrams bearing upon the Senatorial election, a subpoena duces tecum had been issued to him, and the committee required the production of the telegrams sent to and received by the parties named in the subpoena, between the 1st day of January, 1879, and the 1st day of March, 1879. The examination of witnesses terminated January 27, 1880, and the time for filing the briefs of counsel was extended to February 9. The proceedings in the case were ordered to be printed, February 17, 1880, and Senator Saulsbury, from the Committee on Privileges and Elections, to whom was referred memorials relating to the election of Senator Ingalls, having had the same under consideration, submitted the following report:
The committee, under the authority of a resolution adopted by the Senate, appointed a sub-committee of its members, with instructions to investigate the charges and statements contained in said memorials. In discharge of the duty assigned them, the members of the sub-committee met during the recess of the Senate, in the city of Topeka, in said State, and examined a large number of witnesses, whose testimony, together with the testimony of witnesses examined before the whole committee during the present session, is herewith submitted to the Senate.
The conclusions of the committee are expressed in the following resolution:
Resolved, That the testimony taken by the committee proves that bribery and other corrupt means were employed by persons favoring the election of Hon. John J. Ingalls to the Senate, to obtain for him the votes of members of the Legislature of Kansas in the Senatorial election in that State. But it not proved by the testimony that enough votes were secured by such means to determine the result of the election in his favor. Nor is it shown that Senator Ingalls authorized acts of bribery to secure his election.
A minority report was submitted by Angus Cameron, George F. Hoar and John A. Logan, of the committee, as follows:
The undersigned, a minority of the Committee of Privileges and Elections, who were directed to investigate certain statements and charges concerning the recent election of a Senator in the State of Knasas, respectfully submit our views as follows:
Among the acts passed by the Legislature was one relating to losses sustained by citizens of Kansas by the invasion of the Indians during the Governor, who should begin their investigations on the first Tuesday of May, and should have their sessions at Dodge City, at Hays City, and at Norton Center, their report to be made to the Governor within sixty days, and the claims audited by said committee, with the names of the tribes of Indians committing the depredations, if know, should be transmitted to the Secretary of the Interior Department by the Governor, making a demand of the payment of the same by the United States; one regulating the inspection and sale of oils for illuminating purposes; conferring the appointment of inspector by the Mayor and council of any city, or Trustee of any township; changing township elections from the act of 1875, providing for holding them at the general election in November, to the first Tuesday in February; a "Price Raid Auditing commission" was created, consisting of the Governor, Secretary of State, Auditor of State, Treasurer of State and Attorney General; uniformity of text books in the public schools of the State for a period of five years; making the State Historical Society the Trustee of the State; one, providing that all books, papers and effect in the possession of the State House Commissioners, and the architect and superintendent belonging to the State, shall be placed in the custody of the Secretary of the State; one, authorizing and providing for the erection and completion of the west wing of the State House, making appropriation therefor and providing for a special levy of one-half mill; one, repealing the one mill levy of State school tax, which had been levied from the year 1861, to date; one, in relation to State departments, the powers and duties of State officers, the official State paper, and the great seal of the State, the creation of an executive council, consisting of the Governor, Secretary of State, Auditor, Treasurer, Attorney General and Superintendent of Public Instruction, establishing the political year of the State, commencing the second Monday of January; the fiscal year, commencing the first day of July; one, providing for the establishment of the State Reform School; one, authorizing the Secretary of State to purchase 3,000 copies of a compilation of the statues of Kansas, by C. F. W. Dassler; one, creating the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Judicial Districts and changing the boundaries of the first, Third and Eighth Judicial Districts.
Propositions for a Constitutional Convention; for striking out the clause exempting $200 personal properly from taxation; for the "prohibition amendment," were submitted to be voted on at the general election of 1880.
W. R. Adams, A. W. Mann and R. E. Stephenson, were appointed the commission to examine and audit claims caused by the Indian raids of 1878.
New Counties - Hodgeman County was organized March 29; Trego, June 21; Stafford, July 2; Pratt, July 25; Decatur, December 11, 1879.
Elections of 1879 - The State Board of Canvassers made return of C. M. Johnson, as member of the House of Representatives, from Stafford County; of Eugene F. Ware, of Fort Scott, Senator from the Twelfth District to fill vacancy caused by the death of Senator W. R. Griffin; of D. P. Lowe, as Judge of the Sixth Judicial District; H. W. Tacott, of the Seventh; James H. Austin, of the Eighth; Samuel R. Peters, of the Ninth.