KanColl: The Kansas  Historical Quarterlies

Bypaths of Kansas History

August, 1945(Vol. 13 No. 7), pages 473 to 475.
Transcribed by lhn;
digitized with permission of the Kansas State Historical Society.


From the White Cloud Kansas Chief, August 20,1857.

     It is well known that Gov. Walker has declaredthat the Constitution shortly to be formed for Kansas, shall be submitted to avote of the people; and it is also known that the President has promised thatWalker shall be sustained in this policy. This has called out THOMAS J. KEY,editor of the Doniphan Constitutionalist, who is one of the Delegateselect from this County. (It is said, but we hardly believe it, that he everymorning sticks his head into an empty flour barrel, and yells, at the top of hisvoice, "Honorable THOMAS J. KEY!" just to hear how it sounds; and that he has allthe little boys hired, with candy, to exclaim, when he walks the streets, "Theregoes Honorable THOMAS J. KEY! ")

To which, the editor of the Kansas Constitutionalist, of Doniphan,replied:

     There is a small sheet published at White Cloud,called the Chief, said to be edited by one Sol Miller, which we seldom see. Inthe last number the editor devotes nearly a column to the "Honorable THOMAS J.KEY," as he calls us, and he succeeds admirably in misrepresenting us, tellinglies upon us. His article has about as much sense as Black Republican articlesgenerally, such, for instance, as "three groans forMcNulty."
     The editor of the Chiefwishes us to bringhim into notice, but we do not wish to polute our columns with such trash, unlessforced to do so. We would gently hint to the cross-eyed, crank-sided, peaked andlong razor-nosed, bluemouthed, nigger-lipped, white-eyed, soft-headed,long-eared, crane-necked, blobber-lipped, squeaky-voiced, empty-headed,snaggle-toothed, filthy-mouthed, box-ancled, pigeon-toed, reel-footed,goggle-eyed, hammer-hearted, cat-hammed, hump-shouldered, blander-shanked,splaw-footed, ignoble, Black Republican, abolition editor, to attend to his ownaffairs or we will pitch into him in earnest.


Evoking the following answer in the Chief,September 10, 1857:

"HONORABLE" THOMAS J. KEY GETS "SNAVAGE l"-In a late number of the DoniphanConstitutionalist, (which the gentlemanly publisher neglected to send us,)the editor takes satisfaction upon us, by calling us all the hard names he everheard of-hard names being the only argument he understands. Among other things,he calls us a Black Republican, and a liar Days we want him to bring us intonotice-threatens to kick us-and seeming to exhaust his vocabulary of hard words,concludes with a tirade of slop-shop expressions, purporting to come from somehireling lick-spittle in his employ, who is taught and commanded to proclaim,"What a mighty man is Thomas J. Key, my master!" This latter was unnecessary, ashis editorials are always a mess of botchwork, which could not be made worse ifhe were to try. Now, that



dig hurt our feelings awfully! We must acknowledge, we did not exactly tellthetruth about him. We said his name was Thomas Jefferson Key. We beg ThomasJefferson's pardon-it should have been Thomas Jack-ass Key! (No insult intendedto jack-asses generally.) But the idea that we want him to bring us intonotice-goody gracious l Do we want a skunk to fling his filth upon us, thatpeople may notice us? It would be far preferable to being brought into notice bysuch a burlesque upon humanity as Thomas J. Key! But to think that such wretchesare sent to form a Constitution for the government of decent people-the thoughtis humiliating!


From The Daily Times, Leavenworth, November 23, 1861.

A correspondent of the St. Louis Democrat, writing from Tipton [Mo.],Nov.18th, says that in sauntering through the camp of the Kansas First he found thefollowing rich and racy chapter of chronicles:
1. Man that is born of woman, and enlisteth as a soldier in the Kansas First, isof few days, and short of "rations."
2. He cometh forth at "reveille," is present also at "retreat," yea even at"tattoo," and retireth, apparently, at "taps!"
3. He draweth his rations from the commissary, and devoureth the same. Hestriketh his teeth against much "hard bread," and is satisfied. He filleth hiscanteen with aqua pura, and clappeth the mouth thereof upon the bung of a whiskybarrel, and after a little while goeth away rejoicing in his strategy!
4. Much soldiering hath made him sharp; yea, even the seat of his breeches are indanger of being cut through.
5. He covenanteth with the credulous farmer for many chickens, and much honey andmilk, to be paid promptly at the end of each ten days; and lo! his regimentmoveth on the ninth day to another post!
6. His tent is filled with potatoes, cabbage, turnips, kraut, and other delicatemorsels of a dulcet delicious taste, which abound not in the CommissaryDepartment.
7. And many other things not in the "return," and which never will return; yet,of a truth, it must be said of the soldier of the Kansas First, that of a suretyhe taketh nothing which he cannot reach!
8. He fireth his minie rifle at midnight and the whole camp is aroused and formedin line, when lo! his mess come bearing in a nice porker, which he solemnlydeclareth so resembled a secesh that he was compelled to pull trigger!
9. He giveth the Provost Marshal much trouble, often capturing his guard, andpossesses himself of the city.
10. At such times lager and pretzels flow like milk and honey from his generoushand. He giveth without stint to his own comrade, yeal and withholdeth not fromthe lank expectant Hoosier of the "Indiany Twenty-fourth."
11. The grunt of a pig, or the crowing of a cock, awakeneth him from the soundestsleep, and he sauntereth forth, until halted by the guard, when he instantlyclappeth his hands upon his bread basket, and the guard in commiseration allowethhim to pass to the rear, to ease his gripe!


12. No sooner hath he passed the sentry's beat than he striketh a "bee line"forthe nearest hen roost, and, seizing a pair plump pullets, returneth,soliloquizing to himself: "The noise of a goose saved Rome, how much more theflesh of chicken preserveth the soldier."
13. He playeth euchre with the parson whether there shall be preaching in camp onthe Sabbath, and by dexterously "turning a Jack" from the bottom, postponeth theservice.
14. And many other marvelous things doeth he; and lo! are they not alreadyrecorded in the morning reports of Company G?


From the Leavenworth Daily Conservative, June 20, 1863.

     AN AFRICAN MARRIAGE.-The following notice, which we copy from the LawrenceJournal, is strongly indicative of Kansas and the war:
In this city Saturday, June 12, at the residence of Capt. James Christian, byRev. J. M. Wilkinson, Philip Gains, Esq., to Miss Patsey Jane Hawkins, formerlyof Missouri, and now "Free American citizens of Africandescent."


From the Dodge City Times, June 16, 1877.

     On last Tuesday morning the champion prize fight of Dodge City was indulged in byMessrs. Nelson Whitman and the noted Red Hanley, familiarly known as `the redbird from the South.' An indefinite rumor had been circulated in sporting circlesthat a fight was to take place, but the time and place was known only to a selectfew. The sport took place in front of the Saratoga, at the silent hour of 4:30 a.m., when the city police were retiring after the dance hall revelry had subsided,and the belles who reign there were off duty. Promptly at the appointed time thetwo candidates for championship were at the joint. Col. Norton acted as rounderup and whipper-in for both fighters, while Bobby Gill ably performed the arduoustask of healing and handling and sponging off. Norton called `time,' and the ballopened with some fine hits from the shoulder. Whitman was the favorite in thepools, but Red made a brilliant effort to win the champion belt. During theforty-second round Red Hanley implored Norton to take Nelson off for a littlewhile till he could have time to put his right eye back where it belonged, sethis jaw bone and have the ragged edge trimmed off his ears where they had beenchewed the worst. This was against the rules of the ring, so Norton declined,encouraging him to bear it as well as he could and squeal when he got enough.About the sixty-first round Red squealed unmistakably, and Whitman was declaredwinner. The only injuries sustained by the loser in this fight were two earschewed off, one eye bursted and the other disabled, right cheek bone caved in,bridge of the nose broken, seven teeth knocked out, one jaw bone mashed, one sideof the tongue chewed off, and several other unimportant fractures and bruises.Red retires from the ring in disgust.

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