Dec. 6th. -- Thursday. We were awakened again, long before daylight. Some friends have had a long journey from the country above. They were not considered safe here, and had gone far away, but they heard that Lawrence had been attacked, doctor and fifteen others killed; and thinking that the war had fairly opened, they had walked thirty miles in the last few hours, that they might with their friends strike and die for liberty.
The guard are again fired upon, and more of our messengers to different parts of the territory and to the states taken prisoners. Horsemen, in companions of four and six, are continually riding over the hills. They are the leading men in the ranks of the enemy; and we hear their design is to plant their artillery on Mt. Oread, and take this house for barracks. They seem to be looking around with the intention of concluding their plans. We feel perfectly safe so far as the planting of their artillery is concerned. Not one man could stand before the deadly fire of the Sharpe's rifles, from the town or ravine. The Missourians are still slowly gathering in at Lecompton, and the camp near Franklin, and the new one on the Wakarusa, south of us, and only about four miles from town. Our supplies are cut off. People are turned from their homes at midnight, and their corn-cribs and hay-stacks burned.
Some other gentlemen also dined with us. They were unexpected guests, nevertheless welcome. Just before dinner, we saw a large mounted party of the enemy's force going over the hill beyond us. We also saw two men on the west side of the hill, coming cautiously towards the house. It looked to us as though it were impossible for them to escape the observation of the enemy, and we watched them anxiously, almost breathlessly, as they slowly were nearing us. The horsemen, fortunately, instead of going on to the summit, kept a little under the eastern slope, and, thank God! our friends were safe. The reason of their coming over was a simple one. They had been guilty of aiding in the rescue of an innocent man from a gang of desperadoes. A gang of men had been prowling about their house all the morning; not all in one body, but at different points, and in such a manner as to excite suspicions of evil intended against them. Finally, this scouting band of the governor's militia all at once started in the direction of their head-quarters, and our friends immediately came over the hills, seeking a safer place. Our messengers fly back and forth to town, and one of them concludes to go to his home in the states, for a little time. We send to his wife to come and see him, and for the first time I begin to feel that the horrors of war are opening upon us. Men, for doing an act of kindness, are hunted for their lives, and daily and nightly watching alone saves them from falling into the hands of the enemy. I go continually from one part of the house to the other, to see if any spies are about, and once fell into a laughable mistake. Having gone up stairs to have a long look out over hill and prairie, I saw a woman upon the west side of the hill. I ran down and said to the gentlemen, "There is a woman coming to the house. Will you step in the dining-room and see if it is any one you would like to see; if not, you can go up stairs." They looked out, and one of them said, "Why, that's my wife."
I laughed as heartily as they, but did not diminish my watchfulness, because once I was more scared than hurt."
The men were at work on a part of the forts, while some were complete; entrenchments were being thrown up on each side of Massachusetts-street; the soldiers were drilling through the centre of the broad street; ladies were standing in the doorways looking on; while little boys, having caught the general spirit of a resort to arms, were marching about in martial array, with feathers in their paper cocked-hats and imitation guns.
D. R. Atchison, with twenty-five men, was said to be crossing the reserve, towards the camp on the Wakarusa. The men were anxious to go out, and bring him in a prisoner, but the general was firm. We are acting only on the defensive.
The howitzer has just arrived, and several men are guarding it in one of the lower rooms. Some ladies go in to look at the grape and bomb-shells.
It was rumored that Mr. P. has been taken prisoner by the Missourians, and taken into their camp, on the Wakarusa. The indignation of the people is increasing in intensity, and their forbearance growing less. The twelve-pound brass howitzer was brought in by a manoeuvre evincing tact and skill, as well as bravery. The council, having heard of its arrival at Kansas city, decided if possible it must be brought up, and three or four of our citizens, willing to encounter the danger, offered their services for the undertaking. They found the boxes in which it was packed, at the warehouse, consigned to one of our merchants. The proprietor of the warehouse suggested there might be rides in them, and, to quiet all suspicion, Mr. B., with an axe, raised a board from the largest box, saying, "Let's see what there is."
As they looked in, and saw only wheels, he said, "It's only another of H.'s carriages."
Everything was satisfactory. The board was renailed. The boxes were loaded in the wagons, with mattresses and other furniture on the top, and they left Kansas city, by the ferry route. The wagons getting set as they went up the steep bank on the opposite side of the river, Mr. B. called upon a band of Missourians, standing by, "to give them a lift at the wheels," which they did, and without difficulty they reached Lawrence, where they were received with loud acclamations by the citizens. The little besieged town received with it good cheer, hope and courage.
A lady from Ohio, whose husband has ever been most active in the free-state cause, and for whom the enemy feel no little bitterness, has offered her little "shake" cabin, next the hotel, for the general use. Daily and nightly the ladies meet there, in the one room, with its loose, open floor, through which the wind creeps, to make cartridges; their nimble fingers keeping time with each heartbeat for freedom, enthusiastic are they in aiding the defence.
At evening, the young Scotchman with his constant companion, the long rifle, came in. He looked sedate, as, seating himself on the lounge, he said, "The war has commenced. They have shot a man, about five miles from here."
"Who?" and "Is he dead?" were the questions which followed in quick succession.
"A Mr. Barber, one of the men who came in to our assistance from Bloomington. He died almost instantly. It is said that Dr. Wood was in the crowd that shot him."
He said besides, "It is almost impossible to restrain the men to-night. Their imprecations of vengeance are loud and deep, and the general has something to do to restrain his own feelings. A guard have gone out to bring in the body."
The plot thickens. Our men are shot down in the broad sunlight by this ruffianly horde. Can the governor say, "My soul is clear of my brother's blood?" The messengers sent to him have returned, and they come with the promise from him that he will be here to-morrow. The governor sent a long letter to General R., and others in command. It was very indefinite, and non-committal, and evinced some tact in the author, to write so much, and yet say so little to any purpose. Upon one point alone was it clear; that is, the enforcement of the laws. In his conversation he was a little more definite. He said he was unable to restrain the men, his militia, though he had repeatedly commanded them to preserve order. He was endeavoring also to shake off the responsibility of this Missouri mob, but the following pass, given to a gentleman who dined with us to-day, will show he has some connection with it:
"Mr. Jones, Sheriff, or any other in command. Mr. Winchell is going, on business of his own, to Lawrence; please pass him without detention or molestation. ---WILSON SHANNON."
Col. Lane has received a small limb of a tree, with a bullet in it, and hemp bound round it, from the enemy's camp, with the compliments of Col. Burns, of Missouri. Dr. Wood was in company with Burns at the time it was sent.
7th. -- The murdered man was brought into town last night, and in his usual dress, laid upon a table in the hotel. His look was one of perfect repose, with the pallor of the death sleep. The circumstances of his death show more clearly than anything which has previously transpired, the malignity, the utter heartlessness of the foe with whom we have to deal. This certainly convinces us that no mercy will be shown any who fall into their hands.
Mr. Barber, hearing that the lives of the people of Lawrence were in peril, had come, with others in his neighborhood, to lend his aid in making good our defence. Yesterday he mounted his horse, and, bidding his comrades "Good-by," saying that he "would be back in the morning," wholly unarmed, started for his home. Doubtless, as he sped over the prairies on his way, he thought of the glad surprise his coming would give his wife after this few days' absence, and with whom, on leaving for Lawrence, the bitterness of the parting, her unwillingness for him to go, seemed but a foreshadowing of his sad fate. A little after he had left the main road, with his two friends who accompanied him, two horsemen rode out from a company of twelve on the California road, Dr. Wood being one of them. They told him to go with them. In reply to their several questions he said, he "had been to Lawrence, was unarmed, was going to his home;" and, putting spurs to his horse, rode on; but the deadly bullet of the foul creature, the tool of the administration, entered his back, and, saying "O God! I am a murdered man!" he never spoke again.
The home to which he hasted he never reached, but his spirit is an avenging witness before the Higher Court, where all these deeds of blood are held in remembrance.
General George W. Clarke, the Indian Agent, went on his way to meet Governor Shannon at the Wakarusa head-quarters, and there declared with horrid oaths, "I have sent another of these d--d abolitionists to his winter-quarters."
The feeling that her husband would be murdered had haunted the timid wife, but friends kept this dread knowledge from her until this morning.
Words can never convey the mingling emotions which moved the crowd, or the heart-crushing agony of the young wife. There were no children in the household, and all the affections had twined around this one idol. All of life, all of happiness, were centred in him; and to be bereaved thus, was adding bitterness to the agony. It seemed as though her heart must break, and, in her distress and shrieks, the brave, strong-hearted men mingled tears and muttered imprecations of vengeance upon the murderers, and upon him who had brought these murderers into our midst.
The hour approached for the arrival of the governor, who is coming to treat of peace. Already he was coming over the prairie with his suite. The carriage was a covered double-seated one, in which he occupies the back seat. With horsemen riding front and in the rear, the cavalcade moved on. In front of the hotel, lines of citizen soldiery were drawn out, and they knew there was a prospect of a settlement of these difficulties without further bloodshed. Can these men, whose murdered comrade now lies within these walls, make peace and he be unavenged? Their feelings revolt at such a proposal; but the magnanimity of their leaders, who propose pacification, calms the troubled waters, and they realize that peace is better than war, though the hot blood, crying revenge, still chafes. The carriage passed in through the soldiery to the door, and Gen. Robinson and the governor went through the halls, and up the unfinished stairways to the council-chamber.
As the eyes of the governor fell upon the rigid limbs, and the death-pallor of the young man, who yesterday was so full of life, hope, and strength, he gave a perceptible shrug of his shoulders. The governor's suite also entered, and as they passed the silent dead, Col. Boone, of Westport, said, "I did not expect such a thing as this." What else could they expect from the barbarous men gathered here by their murderous appeals?
They were introduced to the Committee of Safety in the large reception-room. Then the governor and Col. Boone, on the part of the invaders, and Gen. Robinson and Col. Lane, on the part of the citizens, held a private session in the council-chamber. They talked over the whole matter. The governor asked that the arms be delivered up. He was soon satisfied, however, that such conditions of peace would never be complied with, and said at last that such a demand was unreasonable. The papers which are to be signed will be made out to-night, and signed by both parties on the morrow.
The governor sent for troops from the fort this morning at three o'clock. He wants to gain time, and delay signing the papers, as he said that "he could not control the force he has brought against us." "If they knew a treaty had been made, they would at once raise the black flag, and march against the town." So, as he is hoping Col. Sumner will send his troops for the defence of Lawrence, this delay is made. When our citizens sent to him days ago for aid, he refused, because he had no orders from the President; and the question is, will he come now?
About three o'clock the governor and suite, consisting of Col. Boone, of Westport, Col. Kearney, of Independence, and Col. Strickland, also of Missouri, with Col. Lane, dined with us.
The governor is a gray-haired man, tall and well-proportioned. He has coarse features and a hard-looking face, generally. Nature must bear a part of the blame, but the weather and bad whiskey, doubtless, come in for a share. However, mild eyes, and a good height of forehead, show that naturally he is not a cruel man; but his head lacks firmness, as we speak phrenologically, and his course here, as well as elsewhere, is evidence that he is vacillating, weak, ill-suited to be the leader of other men; that he is credulous, and easily made a tool in the hands of base men; that, in brief, he is the exponent of the purposes and actions of the men, or party, with whom he is most thrown in contact.
Crowds of horsemen were passing over and down the hill. Some of them were our mounted guard -- others were from the camps of the invaders. The enemy have now nearly surrounded us. The camp on the Wakarusa, just south of Lawrence, cuts off connection with the southern settlements. There are strolling bands of men all through the Delaware Reserve, while quite a body of them are camped in the woods just opposite the town, preventing people passing to and from Leavenworth, and other colonies north. They still have camps at Lecompton, and below Franklin.
Yesterday, two of our ladies went out some ten miles, and brought in two kegs of powder. The guard of the invaders halted them, but apologized by saying, "I thought you were gentlemen."
Some of the enemy entered the house of Judge Wakefield, six miles from Lawrence. They ransacked it; and, going into the chambers, fired through the floor, the ball passing directly by the head of a sick lady, who was lying on a bed in the lower room. They have committed depredations upon the property of the Indians, at which they felt outraged. They are constantly taking prisoners any people from other settlements, coming to our aid, unless in large numbers; and we feel constant anxiety for our messengers who have been out some time.
Coleman, the murderer, fired into our guard; the fire was returned, the ball taking effect in the mule he was riding. It died soon after reaching Franklin. Had the guard known the man, he would have escaped less easily.
Gov. Shannon was in town again to-day. Col. Sumner declined to send any force, because he cannot act without orders from the President. The treaty was made with the people. The governor made a speech to the soldiers, telling them he has been laboring under a mistake; that if there were Missourians here they came of their own accord; that he had called upon none but the people of the territory. They would now disperse. He believed the people of Lawrence were a law-abiding people; indeed, he had learned that he had misunderstood them, and that they were an estimable and orderly people. He was glad to find there was no occasion for an attack upon the town, and no laws had been violated, etc. Cheers were attempted, but the muffled sound was little like the spontaneous, outgushing gladness of a satisfied people. There was yet a suspicion among them that the terms of peace had been too easily entered into; that something of their rights had been conceded by their leaders. The officers in command also made addresses, which more heartily called forth the expression of the people; and, with the governor, Generals Robinson and Lane went down to Franklin to meet the officers in the invading army. The governor had desired them to do so, because many of the leaders in his army were determined upon the guns being delivered up, and he wished some other convincing arguments than his own to be used with them.
The night was exceedingly tempestuous. The wind raged with unequalled fury, and was full of driving snow and sleet. All of the afternoon it had been so strong and furious, that boards, ten or twelve feet long, lying in a pile back of the house, had been blown, end over end, in every direction. But the night had added violence to the storm, and scarcely anything could make headway against, or live long out in it. Our Scotch friend had just come in with ears almost frozen.
We pity the guard who faithfully watch for our safety in such a wild night as this. The password for the night, "Pitch in," given by our gallant Adjutant-General Dietzler, who has command in the temporary absence of General Robinson, was in strange consonance with the wildness of the terrific storm. A double guard was put on, that each man might be oftener relieved from the watch, and to be in better readiness for any attack, which many fear. The anxiety felt for the safe return of the officers from Franklin was intense, so little faith have our people in the honor or the plighted word of the invaders.
At Franklin Generals Robinson and Lane met thirteen captains of the invaders in a little room. The governor made a long statement of the existing state of things. He told them that a misunderstanding had occurred; that the people of Lawrence had violated no law; that they would not resist any properly appointed officer in the execution of the laws; that the guns would not be given up; and concluded by advising them to go home to Missouri.
An escort had been promised to Generals R. and L. back to Lawrence; and when, at about seven o'clock, they left for home, one man only was provided to go with them. After going about one hundred yards, he too bade them "Good-evening," and wheeled his horse, leaving them in the enemy's country, without escort to pass the picket-guard. In this Egyptian darkness, the wind and sleet driving, and effectually blinding their eyes, they trusted to their horses to keep their way homeward, knowing they were in the road only by the sound of their hoofs upon the frozen earth. But safely, though once General Robinson's horse fell under him, without injury to himself or it, they reached Lawrence. Later in the night word came in that a party of the ruffians had taken possession of a house a mile or two from town, driving the family out in the storm. General Dietzler went out to bring them in. The three prisoners were armed with a large number of deadly weapons, and were almost frozen. Their plea for going to the house was that they had lost their way. Suspicion was strong against them, from all the circumstances, that they left Franklin with the design of assassinating Generals Robinson and Lane, but were unable to keep the road, and very truly may have lost their way.
9th. -- The governor having ordered his men to disperse, many did so, while many other turbulent spirits, who had been dragged out of Missouri by their cupidity, by much persuasion, and by being told that now was the time, if ever, for the extermination of the Yankees, made loud complaints, and were determined upon a fight. Their anger towards the governor was also expressed loudly at this peaceful termination of the raid. With the terrible discomfort of the last night in camp, many of the men having no tents, with the failure of the whiskey, there arose a general dissatisfaction.
They carried home to Missouri their dead bodies -- one killed by the falling of a tree, one shot by the guard accidentally, and one killed in some sort of a quarrel. One of Kansas' best citizens had lost his life, and much property been destroyed, all from "misunderstanding." The following are the articles of negotiation and adjustment:
"Whereas there is a misunderstanding between the people of Kansas, or a portion of them, and the governor thereof, arising out of the rescue, near Hickory Point, of a citizen under arrest, and some other matters; and whereas a strong apprehension exists that said misunderstanding may lead to civil strife and bloodshed; and whereas it is desired, by both Governor Shannon and the people of Lawrence and vicinity, to avert a calamity so disastrous to the interests of the territory and the Union, and to place all parties in a correct position before the world, --
"Now, therefore, it is agreed by the said Governor Shannon, and the undersigned people of Lawrence, that the matter in dispute be settled as follows, to wit:
"We, the said citizens of said territory, protest that the said rescue was made without our knowledge or consent, but, if any of our citizens were engaged, we pledge ourselves to aid in the execution of any legal process against them; that we have no knowledge of the previous, present, or prospective existence of any organization in the said territory for the resistance of the laws, and that we have not designed, and do not design, to resist the legal service of any criminal process therein, but pledge ourselves to aid in the execution of the laws, when called on by proper authority, in the town or vicinity of Lawrence, and that we will use all our influence in preserving order therein; and we declare that we are now, as we ever have been, ready at any time to aid the governor in securing a posse for the execution of such process: provided, that any person thus arrested in Lawrence or vicinity, while a foreign force shall remain in the territory, shall be duly examined before a United States district judge of said territory in said town, and admitted to bail; and provided, further, that Governor Shannon agrees to use his influence to secure to the citizens of Kansas Territory remuneration for any damages sustained, or unlawful depredations, if any such have been committed by a sheriff's posse in Douglas County; and, further, that Governor Shannon states that he has not called upon persons residents of any other state to aid in the execution of the laws, and such as are here in this territory are here of their own choice; and that he has not any authority or legal power to do so, nor will he exercise any such power, and that he will not call on any citizen of another state who may be here. That we wish it understood that we do not herein express any opinion as to the validity of the enactments of the Territorial Legislature.
J. H. LANE."
The prisoners on both sides were released. Several who had been in the camp of the enemy were in town to-day. In times of war there are no Sabbaths, and we had no service to-day. The governor, with Jones and General Strickler, came in this morning.
A dinner was provided for them at the Cincinnati House; and, in a private room, some who are not averse, either by nature or principle, to a social glass, had provided such entertainment for the governor. Every one coming in, who ever thus degraded his higher nature, "must drink with the governor." At each glass which he drank he said, "Now here's to the Baptist preacher."
When the dinner was ready, and the blessing about to be implored, the governor broke out in this new strain: "This is the happiest day of my life, by G--d!"
The story of the Baptist preacher is simply this: When Mr. Pomeroy left Lawrence for Kansas city, some men, watching him in Lawrence, immediately notified the camp at Franklin, and a company of men forthwith was sent out to intercept him. Having nearly reached the Baptist Mission, the party came up, and asked where he was going.
He said briefly, "To our mission;" and at once the party gave him the soubriquet of "the Baptist preacher." One of the party, however, quite unfortunately as it regarded his further progress towards "our mission," recognized him. He was taken by them across the river again; and wet and cold, without fire, he slept in their camp on the Wakarusa. Threats ran high against him; and his peril became so imminent, that, when his guard had fallen asleep, Atchison, to whom the ruffians had given the euphonious title of "Old Dave," took him to Blue Jacket's, an Indian house, where some of the officers had their head-quarters.
Atchison has declared to the rough men who follow him, "that they cannot fight now. The position the Lawrence people have taken is such that it would not do to make an attack upon them; it should ruin the democratic cause too. But, boys, we'll fight some time, by G--d!"
Mr. Redpath, a young Englishman, came in from Leavenworth, and in his facetious way, which makes the most common thing replete with interest and life, and turns the dull and serious into fun and gayety, told the story of his departure from Leavenworth, in company with four or five others, to come to Lawrence; how they were intercepted, and at last taken prisoners, and only released this morning.
My husband had not now been home for several days, save to dine on Friday. Towards evening he sent a carriage, and a request that I should come down town. So, quickly donning heavy English shawl and furs, we were soon there. I sat in the carriage while a messenger notified him of my arrival. He returned, bringing the word, "The general says, 'Come up to the council-chamber;'" and, under his escort, I passed through a file of soldiers guarding the door, also through halls similarly guarded, and up the rough staircases, until I reached the further end of the third story, where, upon a slight knock, the door was opened, and, with ceremony, I was ushered into the presence of, and introduced to, Gen. Robinson. This being through with, I noticed several ladies, friends and acquaintances, sitting by; and, when a few more were gathered together, we were informed by the general that "the war is over; the hatchet is buried; that the late enemy have expressed a desire to cultivate a conciliatory and friendly spirit with their neighbors in Lawrence; that it is better to bridge over past differences by the kindly, pleasant offices of good-will and friendship. As a token of our willingness to accept and give any pledges of our good offices in the future, we will to-morrow invite Gov. Shannon, and any of his friends from Missouri who will remain, to a social gathering." The ladies were also informed that to them they would look for the necessary refreshments for the evening.
How New England's high-toned propriety would be shocked at the idea of "getting up" a party on so short notice, and some seven or eight hundred guests expected! What would occupy a month's time there, and any amount of unnecessary words, is done here equally as well in an eighth part of the time, with a greater amount of pleasure coming to all.
Another reason for the meeting of the morrow's evening is that Gov. Shannon might see that the people neither have the look of "paupers" nor "rebels." The ladies found time amid the arrangements to speak to the governor, who sat by, an occasional word; and to one and all he was free to say, "This is the happiest day of my life." He stated also, "that he liked the people of Lawrence so well, he should come to live among them." Had the people undergone a sudden transformation?
A rumor came in during the evening from the invading horde still lingering in the borders, and reached the watchful ear of the governor. "His militia" were so indignant with him for the truce, that they threatened him with lynching, and an immediate attack upon Lawrence. He is fearful, and lacks the boldness of a man who has done his duty. Lynching is rather an unpleasant mode of making one's exit, and especially undignified to a person holding the honorable office of governor. Such a terminus to his career must be avoided. A simple remedy is at hand, and the fluttering heart says "Save me from my friends." Feeling doubtless like the man who "digged a pit for his enemies, but into it he fell," he signed the commission of Generals Robinson and Lane, authorizing them to use the force under them, a properly constituted militia, and make good their defence.
The following is the document in question:
"TO CHARLES ROBINSON AND J. H. LANE. You are hereby authorized and directed to take such measures, and use the enrolled forces under your command in such manner, for the preservation of the peace and the protection of the persons and property of the people of Lawrence and vicinity, as in your judgment shall best secure that end.
Lawrence, Dec. 9th, 1855."
10th. -- The early morning finds us busy in the culinary department. The making of seven loaves of bread and five of cake, with other necessary work, leaves only a few stray moments in which to finish a letter, which is to be a messenger of good tiding to friends far away under the home-roof, whose nights on our account have been sleepless and days filled with suspense. It is already three and a half o'clock, and the ladies were to meet at four o'clock. So pressing into the service, as bearers of burdens, two young men, who called opportunely, I went down, and was soon astonished by the huge baskets of provisions which were provided. Had the Missourians looked in upon the well-filled tables prepared on so brief notice, they would have given up the idea of starving us to terms; and had New England added her presence among the welcome guests, with her well-filled pockets and stocks in trade, she would have realized that, in the large open-heartedness and freedom from conventionalities of her frontier children, there is much of the real, true enjoyment of life.
During the speeches of the early part of the evening many of the ladies stood upon tables ranged around the walls, and their position even there was one of compactness. The incidents of the last few weeks were recalled, and those of the war recited. The bringing in of the cannon through the enemy's country, and of the powder by the ladies, had honorable mention. A "compromise measure" also afforded a good deal of merriment. The first week of the invasion a gentleman heard at Lecompton that it was the governor's plan to demand that the arms of the people of Lawrence be delivered up. Upon this gentleman's return to Lawrence, he asked Gen. Robinson what answer he would make to such a demand.
His reply was brief: "I would propose a compromise measure: keep the rifles, and give them the contents."
Gov. Shannon did not stay to the party. When the morning came he found his business required his attention at the mission, and he went on his way. But "Sheriff Jones" was there, and there were some there beside who did not cherish that spirit of forgiveness and conciliation, which makes man magnanimous in the treatment of an enemy; and the general's party at one time came near proving anything but a "peace party." There was a spirit there full of ambition, and a desire for office. And while the murder of young Barber was fresh in the minds of his friends; while the voice of poor, weak human nature would say revenge if the right chord was touched; and while "Sheriff Jones," an officer of the territorial courts, was an invited guest of Gen. Robinson, and political capital could be made; with what wonderful ingeniousness it wrought to keep alive this spirit of revenge in their breasts! The object was evident to all, and the indignation of many was hardly kept within bounds. The event, however, proved but another instance of the evil, which was intended for another, recoiling upon one's own head.
After this unpropitious opening of the evening, we had music and social pleasant converse with many friends we seldom meet.
Dr. C., a young Kentuckian, one of the released prisoners, was here last night. He was in the enemy's camp at Lecompton. After a sickness of several weeks at Topeka, and a week or so of feebleness at our house, he left on Tuesday the 27th for his home at Doniphan. On his way thither he was attacked by the mob, disarmed and brought back some sixty miles. Being brought to the camp the other prisoner, Mr. W., also being with him, they were given in charge to "Sheriff Jones." Weak as Dr. C. was from his recent illness, the fever still lurking in his veins, he was carried this long distance, then placed in a cold and very open room which was used as a liquor store. Beside all the noise and confusion usually attendant upon such resorts, Jones and others came in at night and "played poker at twenty-five cents ante." The room was so filled with men that he was obliged to sit up all night. There was constant talk of hanging, and most bitter threats used. Jones did not hesitate to tell Mr. W., in regard to a certain matter, that he must "tell or swing." Kelly, of the Squatter Sovereign, told him he thirsted for blood, and should like to see him hung on the first tree.
Dr. C. was very weak, and had now become delirious from the intense excitement and fatigue. Dr. Stringfellow and one or two other physicians were in attendance all night. One of the guard reasoned with Jones upon his treatment of the prisoners, until he desisted.
Other prisoners were similarly treated. One old man, whose years among civilization would have been a guaranty against insult, was treated with like cruelty. The rope with which they threatened to hang him was repeatedly shown him; but, heedless of their threats, and above the raging of the storm, which gave fair promise of leaving the hangman without any upon whom to exercise his office, his voice was heard, "Send it a little colder, O Lord!"
And amid the fearful oaths and unceasing threats of evil, there was the same earnest plea: "O Lord, send it a little colder."
12th. -- The different companies were drawn out in lines yesterday, and farewell addresses were made them by their officers. The Lawrence companies then escorted those from the other settlements a little way out of town.
The war is over for the present. Yet we cannot hope for any permanent peace until the strong arm of an executive, who will not disgrace his office, be interposed for the protection of the settlers, who in good faith came to make homes, rebuilding the old landmarks so ruthlessly torn down by the corruption of men in power.
So long as the excitable, brutal men along the borders are wrought upon by every incentive which can influence them, by such men as Atchison and Stringfellow, so long are we exposed to murder, rapine and pillage, at their hands. The sheriff in this invasion was prime mover, and upon him rests the chief guilt. At Lecompton, soon after the peace, he declared, "Major Clark and Burns both claim the honor of killing that d--d abolitionist, and I don't know which ought to have it. If Shannon hadn't been a d--d old fool, that peace would never have been declared. He would have wiped Lawrence out. He had men and means enough to do it." Nothing could illustrate better the bitterness and treachery of his character, when he accepts the invitation, and makes one of the "peace party" in Lawrence.
At Douglas, Stringfellow informed his motley gang that the "thing is settled;" that "they are sold;" that "Shannon has turned traitor;" "he has disgraced himself and the whole pro-slavery party."
By the misrepresentations of Jones, Gov. Shannon brought this force from a neighboring state, against a peaceable community. He saw his error, and entered into a treaty. Who ever before heard of a governor entering into a treaty with the citizens over whom his own jurisdiction extends, having in view their obedience to the laws? The treaty states, moreover, that Gov. Shannon "had not called upon persons residents of any other state to aid in the execution of the laws." Yet several gentlemen from Missouri come up with him to Lawrence, and in council treat for peace. When our officers go to Franklin, at his urgent request, it is to meet, at their head-quarters, the captain and officers of his army. Does this look like any variation from the truth? The governor is complained of bitterly by the men who say that on the first evening of his return from Lawrence to the head-quarters on the Wakarusa, he stated distinctly the arms were to be given up. The rabble, with many expressions of dissatisfaction, have sought their homes. The leaders, suffering from the smart of mortification, consider themselves sold, Judas-like, by one who should be the soul of honor, integrity and justice, and whom they trusted as a strong ally in the subjugation of this freedom-loving and down-trodden people. Feeling that their defeat has indeed been ignoble and signal, they, nursing secret discontent, and thirsting for revenge, will plan a new invasion, new schemes of villany. There is no settlement of the difficulty. It is only the present lull of the late storm, gathering, it may be, greater fury. While the border leagues are still in being, and they as strongly determined now, as for a year past, to make Kansas a slave state; while the settlers in Kansas have grown yet more strong in their devotion to the principles of freedom from the infamous measures taken by Gov. Shannon, and the other officials, to forcibly wrest them from them, there is no certainty of peace. Since Gov. Shannon has brought a mob against Lawrence; since he, with Judge Lecompte and other appointees of the President, have fraternally sympathized with Atchison and Stringfellow, the depth, the intensity of the feeling of our people against such a tyrannical rule cannot be estimated.
The seeds of difficulty are sown broadcast, and no one can tell what trivial circumstance shall cause a sudden, terrible outbreak. There is ignorance among this excitable class of men in the border counties, but the ignorance is not the principal cause for fear. Such men as Col. Boone of Westport, who was Gov. Shannon's chief adviser, rule these men; and when Col. Boone came to Lawrence with his portly bearing and most dignified manners, one could hardly believe he was a "border ruffian." While the words, "he came to see if everything was done right," were repeatedly upon his tongue, his inflammatory appeals for men and money to aid in this invasion, in which there was no shadow of truth, were sent through all the border. He has, beside, never failed to be active in these invasions and frauds upon the ballot-box.
Unless the federal government interposes for the relief of the actual settler, there is yet imminent danger that other martyrs for liberty will fall beneath the assassin's blow; that these broad prairies, whose very air breathes life and freedom, consecrated by God when fresh from his forming hand, sealed by a sacred compact of men, shall again be consecrated by their blood.