KANSAS COLLECTION BOOKS

William G. Cutler's History of the State of Kansas


TERRITORIAL HISTORY, Part 9

[TOC] [part 10] [part 8] [Cutler's History]

COUNCIL DISTRICTS.

First District - First, Fourth and Seventeenth Election Districts; 466 voters; two Councilmen.

Second District - Second election district, and so much of the Thirteenth as is embraced in the Kansas half-breed lands, the voters thus detached from the Thirteenth to vote at the precinct of the Second District; 212 voters; one Councilman.

Third district - Third, Seventh and Eighth Election districts; 198 voters; one Councilman.

Fourth District - Fifth Election District; 442 voters; two Councilmen.

Fifth District - Sixth Election District; 253 voters; one councilman.

Sixth District - Ninth, Tenth, Eleventh and Twelfth Election Districts; 201 voters; one Councilman.

Seventh District - The Wolf River and the Doniphan Precincts of the Fourteenth, the whole of the Eighteenth, and so much of the fourteenth Election District as lies north of Walnut creek, and its main branch and a due west line from its source, voters detached from the fifteenth to vote at the Doniphan Precincts; 247 voters; one Councilman.

Eighth District - The Burr Oak Precinct of the Fourteenth District; 215 voters; one Councilman.

Ninth District - The residue of the fifteenth Election District; 208 voters; one Councilman.

Tenth District - Sixteenth and the residue of the Thirteenth Election District; 468 voters; two Councilmen.

REPRESENTATIVE DISTRICTS.

First District - Seventeenth and Fourth Election Districts; 97 voters; one member.

Second District - First Election District; 369 voters; three members.

Third District - Third Council District; 193 voters; two members.

Fourth District - Third Election District; 101 voters; one member.

Fifth District - Seventh and Eighth Election Districts; 92 voters; one member.

Sixth District - Sixth Election District; 253 voters; two members.

Seventh District - Fifth Election District; 442 voters; four members.

Eighth District - Ninth and Tenth Election Districts; 99 voters; one member.

Ninth District - Eleventh and Twelfth Election Districts; 102 voters; one member.

Tenth District - The residue of the Thirteenth Election District, not embraced in the Second Council District; 83 voters; one member.

Eleventh District - The Seventh Council District; two members.

Thirteenth District - The Ninth Council District; 208 voters; two members.

Fourteenth District - The Sixteenth Election District; 385 voters; three members.

THE NEW ELECTION DISTRICT.

The Eighteenth was defined by proclamation of the Governor, "to include the settlements on the Nemaha," portions of the Eleventh, Twelfth and Thirteenth Electoral Districts, bounded as follows: "Commencing on the Vermillion Branch of the Blue River, at the crossing of the military road from Fort Leavenworth to Fort Kearney; thence due north to the line of the Territory; thence along the same east to the line of the Fourteenth Election District; thence south, along the line of the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Election Districts to the aforesaid military road; and thence, by the middle of said road, to the place of beginning." The place of election to be at the house of W. W. Moore, where the St. Joseph road crosses the Nemaha.

The Tenth and Eleventh Districts were changed by detaching from the latter and adding to the former the following territory: "Beginning in the Vermillion River, at the crossing of the Independence Emigrant road, thence up that river beyond the house of Josiah G. Adams; thence due east along the nothern (sic) side of said house to the said road, and down the said road to the place of beginning."

JUDICIAL DISTRICTS DEFINED.

February 26, 1855, the Governor, by proclamation, defined the limits of the Judicial Districts, assigned the Judges and appointed the time and place of holding terms of court, as follows:

First District - Included the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, Fifteenth, Sixteenth and Eighteenth Election Districts. Assigned to Chief Justice S. D. Lecompte. Courts to be held at Leavenworth.

Second District. - Included the First, Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth and Seventeenth Election Districts. Assigned to Hon. Rush Elmore. Courts to be held at Tecumseh.

Third District. - Included the Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, Tenth, Eleventh and Twelfth Election Districts. Assigned to Hon. Saunders W. Johnson. Courts to be held at Pawnee.

The terms of court were to be held as follows:

At Leavenworth, on the third Monday of April, and the third Monday of October.

At Tecumseh, on the second Monday after the third Monday of April, and the second Monday after the third Monday of October.

At Pawnee, on the fourth Monday after the third Monday of April, and fourth Monday after the third Monday of October.

To provide for present emergencies and to put the court machinery promptly in motion, special terms were announced: At Leavenworth, Monday, March 19; at Tecumseh, March 26; at Pawnee, April 2.

Thus, with the census completed, the districts defined, the apportionment made, the courts established, the settlers under the aegis of law, and the guarantees of the organic act by which the Territory had been created, might cherish reasonable expectations that the outrages attending the fall election would not be again attempted, and that, without outside interference, the people would elect their legislators, and thus become the sponsors of the laws they should enact, and amendable to their provisions. So hoped Gov. Reeder, and to accomplish this end he labored to the utmost; so hoped every bona fide settler of the Territory, whether slavery or anti-slavery; so hoped all men who looked upon Kansas as their future home.

Nevertheless, there were determined men controlling the National Administration, who had ordained that Kansas should become a slave Territory and ultimately a slave State. For that end, they had nominated and elected Franklin Pierce, pushed to consummation the repudiation of the Missouri Compromise and espoused the specious doctrines of Squatter Sovereignty as the exponent of the people's power to enact their own laws. With the whole power of the Administration pledged to the iniquitous cause, these conspirators shamelessly pursued their work, seeking to make "assurance doubly sure." The head conspirators were in the United States Senate and the President's Cabinet.

While the written instructions to the Territorial Governor, as well as the provisions of the organic act itself, forbade outside interference with the domestic affairs of the Territory, and while Gov. Reeder was intent on carrying out in good faith the instructions he had received, Senator Atchison, with the full knowledge of his co-conspirators in the Senate and Cabinet, marshaled the Blue Lodges of Western Missouri to a renewed raid upon the ballot-boxes of the Territory, and harangued them nightly in phrase sufficiently profane and vulgar to reach the understanding and fire the heart of the lowest border "Puke." In addition to his efforts, other orators of less ability were canvassing the border counties, giving most exaggerated and false statements as to the number and character of the emigrants passing into the Territory from the Northern and Eastern States, calculated to inflame the prejudices of the people and incite them to any act of lawlessness or violence necessary to thwart the "Abolitionists." The border papers vied with the speakers and each other in the intemperate abuse heaped upon the incoming settlers, and in their frantic appeals to the Missourians to come over at the ensuing election and settle the question at the ballot box. The following extract from the Kansas Herald (Leavenworth) shows the spirit of the pro-slavery press. The article was published a day or two before the election, addressed to "Freemen of the West." It closes with the following lofty and earnest peroration:

We hate a deceiver. And a party, like this ragged, miserly, nigger-stealing crew, who skulk behind the name Free State, we hold in meaner contempt than we do the immediate and avowed pupils of Lloyd Garrison. Their Janus-faced, double-dealing conduct must make them abhorred by God as they are despised by honorable men, and their last end will be down, like the dog, bereft of a soul to rise, but secure in earthly preservation, for no "creeping thing" of God's make will work in their accursed carcasses.

It cannot be that such wretches will triumph over all right and justice. We know the spirit of the West too well to admit to it. We will to the rescue, with lead and steel if necessary, for triumph our enemies shall not, unless God forsakes us, and this country is too new to deserve the judgment of Sodom and Gomorrah. Missourians, remember the 30th day of March, A. D. 1855, as Texans once remembered the Alamo.

[TOC] [part 10] [part 8] [Cutler's History]