In reply I have to state, that by instructions from this department, dated the
15th of February last. Col. E. V. Sumner and Lieut.-Col. P. S. G. Cooke were
directed to aid by a military force the constituted authorities of the territory of
Kansas in suppressing insurrection or invasive aggression against the organized
government of the territory, or armed resistance to the execution of the laws, in
case the governor, finding the ordinary course of judicial proceedings and the
powers vested in the United States marshal inadequate for the purpose, should
make requisition upon them for a military force to aid him in the performance of
that official duty.
Under these instructions, and upon the requisition of Governor Shannon, a
detachment of troops, under a lieutenant, was ordered to report to the governor
to sustain the constitvited authorities in the enforcement of the laws. The pro-
ceedings in the case are specifically set forth in the inclosed copies of the corre-
spondence, which contain the only information the department has upon the
The instructions from this department, being directed exclusively to the sup-
Governor Shannon s Administration. 263
port of the organized government and constituted authorities of the territory,
convey no authority to employ soldiers to aid, by making arrests or otherwise, in
the enforcement of "supposed laws, enacted by a supposed legislature." The
department, therefore, presvxmes and believes that United States soldiers have
not been employed to make arrests under the circumstances stated in the resolu-
tion. Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
To the President. JEFFERSON DAVIS, Secretary of War.
Headquarters, Fort Leavenworth, May 7, 1856.
Sir : I have the honor to forward herewith further correspondence in rela-
tion to Kansas difficulties. Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
E. V. SUMNER, Col. 1st Cavalry, Com'g.
Col. S. Cooper, Adjutant-General United States Army, Washington, D. C.
Executive Office, Lecompton, K. T., April 21, 1856.
Sir : I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 21st,
and also of the 22d instant. Lieutenant Mcintosh reported his command to me
at this place agreeably to instructions. His report to you will put you in pos-
session of all that has transpired while aiding the sheriff of this county in the
execution of the process in his hands.
It is due to Lieutenant Mcintosh that I should say that his prompt and
efficient action, and the important services which he has rendered the sheriff in
executing the laws, entitle him to my warmest commendations and most sincere
Hoping to see you soon, when I will be able to explain matters further, I have
the honor to be your obedient servant, WILSON SHANNON.
Executive Office, Lecompton, K. T., April 25, 1856.
Sir: I am satisfied that the persons against whom writs have been issued and
placed in the hands of the sheriff of this county, and who have not been taken,
have secreted themselves or fled, so that for the present no further arrests can be
made; nevertheless I deem it prudent to have a military posse or guard of 30 men
stationed at this place, and subject to my orders, to act in case of an emergency.
I would therefore request you to furnish me with such a guard from your com-
mand, to be used as a sheriff's posse, and to preserve the peace, as occasion may
require. I have no further requisition to make on you at present, but would re-
spectfully request you to hold your command in readiness to act at a moment's
warning, if required by me, to enforce the laws or preserve the peace.
Yours, with great respect, WILSON SHANNON.
Franklin, April 28, 1856. '
Colonel : Under the direction of the governor, I started from Lecompton early
this morning with the intention of assisting the deputy sheriff in serving writs
left by Mr. Jones. We arrived at Lawrence about half-past 6 o'clock a. m.; and
although we remained in town nearly two hours, the sheriff was unsuccessful in
his search ; apparently those for whom he had writs had left the town. I shall
remain near here for two or three days in order to be nearer the sheriff, and to
attend to the serving of the writs.
264 Kansas State Historical Society.
The governor has not yet issued any writs against Mr. Reeder or Robinson,
and I do not think he will at present. As I passed through Lawrence this morn-
ing, everything seemed to be quiet and orderly, and I hear very little at present
of the Missouj-ians.
The person who takes this is in haste to leave. If anything important occurs,
I shall let you know of it by express.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JAMES McINTOSH, 1st Lieut. 1st Cavalry, Com'g Detachment.
Colonel Sumner, 1st Cavalry, Commanding.
[34 Cong., 1st Sess. H. Ex. Doc. 106.]
GOVERNOR GEARY'S ADMINISTRATION.
Leavenworth City, 9th September, 1856.
His Excellency, Governor Geary:
Dear Sir: The undersigned have been appointed a committee by the com-
mon council of the city of Leavenworth to tender to you the hospitalities of
our town, and to ask of you, in the name of our fellow citizens, the accept-
ance of a public dinner, which is hereby tendered, at such time as may best
suit your pleasure.
We sincerely hope that you may find it convenient to comply with the
request hei^ein menlioned.
With warm wishes for the restoration of peace and fraternal feeling in
our suffering country, under your administration, and for your individual
prosperity and happiness, we are, sir.
Very respectfully, your obedient servants,
JOHN A. HALDERMAN,
O. F. RBNICK,
WILLIAM A. SHANNON,
Fort Leavenworth, September 9, 1856.
Gentlemen: Your invitation tendering me the hospitalities of the city of
Leavenworth, and a public dinner, has been duly received. The many pub-
lic duties pressing upon me just at the time of my advent into the territory,
entirely preclude the possibility of my accepting your kindness just at this
time. At some future day it will afford me pleasure to meet you around the
Your warm diesires for the restoration of peace and fraternal feeling in
Kansas meets a most hearty response in my bosom and in that of every true
Please accept the warmest assurances of my most hearty desires for your
prosperity and happiness, individually and collectively, and for the perma-
nent peace of the territory.
With great respect, your obedient servant, JOHN W. GEARY.
Messrs. John A. Halderman, O. F. Renick, William Shannon, committee.
[Leavenworth Herald, Sep. 13, 1856.]
Governor Gcanfs Administration. 265
ELECTION TO FILL VACANCY.
(The contest of Gov. A. H. Reeder for the seat as delegate in Congress held by
J. W. Whitfield, under the election of October, 1S55, resulted in the decision that
neither had been elected, and a vacancy was declared.)
Whereas, A vacancy exists in the office of delegate to the house of repre-
sentatives of the United States from the territory of Kansas:
Now, therefore, I, John W. Geary, governor of the territory of Kansas, do
hereby issue this my proclamation, requiring the sheriffs of each county in
said territory to cause a poll to be opened on the first Monday in October, 1856,
tlie day of the general election, for a delegate to the second session of the
thirty-fourth Congress of the United States, and to cause returns thereof to
be made to the office of the secretary of the territory, in the manner pre-
scribed by law, at the same time that the returns of the general election are
In testimony whereof, I have hereunto subscribed my hand and caused to
be affixed the seal of the territory.
Done at Lecompton, this 21st day of September, A. D. 1856.
[Seal.] JOHN W. GEARY, Governor of Kansas Territory.
By the Governor: Daniel Woodson, Secretary.
[From the Leavenworth Herald, September 27, 1856.]
SECRETARY MARCY TO GOVERNOR GRIMES.
Office of Secretary of State,
Washington, D. C, October â€” , 1856.
To his Excellency James W. Grimes, Governor of Iowa:
Sir: Your letter of date August 30, addressed to the President, has been
referred by him to this department, with instructions to reply as follows: The
President regrets that you should "have been receiving letters, memorials
and affidavits from former citizens of Iowa in Kansas for a whole year, alleg-
ing that they are not protected by the United States officers in the enjoyment
of their liberty and property." That your excellency should be subjected to
such an annoyance, is the more painful when we consider that you have no
power to grant redress.
The state of affairs in Kansas is to be regretted deeply by all American
citizens. The President is not less sensitive than you are as to the rigiits
of the citizens of Kansas. His power, however, is only executive and which
he is sworn to execute. It therefore becomes his duty to see that the laws
are faithfully executed. He has no power to disregard, amend or set aside
laws as unjust or unconstitutional; for to do so would be to invest him with
the lawmaking power â€” to make him an absolute and irresponsible power; lo
make him not the president of a republic, but the absolute monarch of the
country, position to which the President does not aspire.
The President hitherto has been, and now is, using all the means in his
power to suppress outrages in Kansas upon private rights, and to sustain
and enforce law and order. The difficulties in Kansas have mainfully arisen
from a spirit of rebellion against the constituted authorities, and a determi-
nation to, resist all authority and law; which, by its general dissemination,
has subverted civil government and rendered the law powerless, and, by de-
stroying the power of the law, has opened a general field for rapine, murder
Kansas State Historical Society.
and the whole catalogue of crimes to be committed with impunity, and to go
The President has taken every effective measure to secure to the citizens
of Kansas domestic tranquility and security against foreign aggression. The
suppression of insurrectionary movements is within his power, but he can-
not and will not attempt to control traitors to their country. He will protect
with the national arm all who are disposed to gather around the standard
of the law and to obey its behests. The President, conscious of having per-
formed his whole duty, is at a loss to know by what authority your excellency
claims to arraign him or to call upon him for an explanation.
Assuming that the general government has failed to perform its duty, you
assert "that it is manifestly right of each of the states to adopt measures to
protect its former citizens." You demand again and again the protection, but
conclude with what seems to be the burden of all your griefs â€” not a demand
for protection to citizens in Kansas, but a demand that the military force on
the line of emigration into the territory be dispersed. The President cannot
gratify you in this matter. He will not permit armed invasion from Mis-
souri or Iowa, or any other source; peaceful emigration, he never has and
never will interrupt.
The President is not disposed to except to the style of your address, when
you say to him, "as the executive of Iowa I demand for her citizens in Kansas
protection in the enjoyment of their property, their liberty, and their, rights,"
but would suggest to your excellency that such language implies a right to
enforce obedience and the power to compel it. Neither of these are intrusted
to your excellency, and the President therefore pardons to your zeal what
could not be forgiven to your good breeding.
In conclusion, you propose the following issue: "In the event of a non-
compliance in my view, a case will clearly have arisen within the principle
laid down by Mr. Madison in the Virginia resolutions of 1778, when it will be
the duty of the states to interfere to arrest the progress of the evils in that
It is not strange that a government with such limited powers as are con-
ceded by the constitution of the United States and conferred by the consti-
tution of Iowa upon you should overestimate himself. The doctrine that
the executive of Iowa can protect her citizens beyond her borders, or that he
has any authority beyond the limits of his state, is an absurdity.
The constitution defines the rights of all citizens of Iowa going to Kan-
sas or elsewhere. They cannot carry there the laws or the protection of Iowa,
any more than a citizen of a slave state can carry his slaves and hold them
there. When he goes to Kansas, the constitution guarantees to him the pro-
tection of the laws of Kansas and all the rights which the citizens there
enjoy. (Article 4, section 2, constitution U. S.)
The President, believing that a little reflection will convince your excel-
lency that your jurisdiction of the citizens of Iowa is confined to the limits
of your own state, still feels solicitous lest your excellency become excited
and attempt some Quixotic redress, for the real or fancied wrongs of citizens
of Iowa in Kansas, and therefore invites your attention to this clause in the
constitution: Article 1, section 10. "No state shall, without the consent of
Congress, lay any duty of tonnage, keep troops or ships of war in time of
peace, enter into any agreement or compact with another state or with a for-
eign power, or engage in war, unless actually invaded, or in such imminent
danger as will not admit of delay."
Governor Geary's Administration. 267
Under the restriction of the constitution, the President hopes you will not
undertake any rash or ill-considered enterprise of a warlike character with-
out the limits of you own state, but that you will lend the influence of your
example and your counsel to maintain law and order, in accordance with the
constitution, and that you will become an efficient aid to him in faithfully
discharging the sworn duties of his office.
With high consideration, I remain your obedient servant,
WILLIAM L, MARCY, Secretary of State.
To James W. Grimes, Governor of Iowa.
[From Leavenworth Herald, November 22, 1856.]
VISIT OF GOVERNOR GEARY TO LEAVENWORTH.
On Tuesday last, [November 18, 1856] Governor Geary was welcomed to
Leavenworth by the mayor, who delivered a few appropriate remarks, as
Governor Geary: Permit me, on behalf of my fellow citizens of Leaven-
worth city, to extend to you a most hearty welcome. As mayor of this young
and growing city, allow me to greet you, and to express the opinion that you
are sufficiently imbued with those true democratic, union-loving principles
to cause you to administer the affairs of this territory in a manner calculated
to render satisfaction to every patriot. You, sir, by the bold, rigorous and
efficient steps which you have taken to restore peace in this distracted ter-
ritory, have succeeded, and thereby placed its citizens under a deep and last-
ing debt of gratitude to you. Believing, sir, that your excellency will continue
to use every exertion in your power to carry out those principles which will
tend to advance the interest of this young and beautiful territory, to main-
tain law and order, and support the glorious constitution of our common coun-
try, it is with feelings of the most profound pleasure that I again extend to
you a most cordial welcome and the hospitalities of our city.
GOVERNOR GEARY'S SPEECH.
Fellow Citizens: I have just completed an extensive tour of observation
through the southern and western portions of this territory, and am happy
to inform you that the benign influences of peace, which I have every reason
to believe will be permanent, now reign throughout all its borders.
Solicitude for the continuance of this auspicious state of affairs is the only
reason I have to offer for my presence among you upon this important
I am truly gratified to learn that most amicable and peaceful feeling
animates the hearts of the large concourse of people this day assembled
from all parts of the union to witness these land sales.
They are my sentiments, and I desire you to receive them, as I utter
them, in the most conciliatory spirit.
The sale of land this day is by virtue of a treaty with the Delaware
Indians, the United States making the sale, as the trustee for the Indians.
Justice to the actual bona fide settler and the Indian is the purpose of the
Upon the opening of this territory for settlement, many of our citizens
came here, settled, and improved these lands. These men left their homes
in the states and brought with them their energy, industry, skill, and capital.
Through many privations, and in spite of almost insurmountable difficulties.
268 Kansas State Historical Society.
they have extended our frontier, erected homes for their families, planted
fields and fenced them, and by their persevering labor have given value and
consequence to these broad acres.
These lands, now appraised at from $1.25 to $10 per acre were, previous
to the advent of these noble and hardy pioneers, worth but $1.25 per acre.
I also understand that the United States government, the trustee for the
Indians, tacitly permitted this settlement and expenditure of labor and
capital, by never having given the settlers notice to quit.
These premises being granted, it is, in my opinion, the duty of the gov-
ernment to protect the bona fide settler in the enjoyment of his equitable
rights, and to see that he is not deprived of the fruits of his honest labor.
I am, therefore, in favor of assuring to the actual settler his title to the
laud, upon his paying its appraised value, as fixed by the government.
I then say, unequivocally, that I earnestly sympathize with the honest,
bona fide settler, and I invoke all citizens, as they value justice and the peace
of this territory, to permit the actual settler quietly to take his land, upon pay-
ment of the value fixed upon it by the government.
While I recognize the claim of the occupant to the fullest extent, under
all the principles of justice and equity, to the land whose value is chiefly
owing to his possession and labor, I must remind him that it is not a right
according to the technicalities of law, and he should not endeavor to enforce
this equitable right by force and violence. This would put him in the wrong
before the bar of public opinion, which now universally gives him support,
and present him as a wrong-doer instead of an honest, law-abiding citizen.
Let me then pray you to rest on the good sense and justice of the people,
both citizens and strangers, and be assured that all the influence of those in
authority, as far as I can answer for them, is thrown into the scale of your
This position can do no injustice to the Delaware Indians. Their mag-
nificent reserve, 40 miles long by 10 wide, with a population of but 1,000,
is more than ample for all useful agricultural purposes, and the purchase-
money of these trust lands will enable them to cultivate and improve what is
left. Indeed, the value of the reserve will be more than quadrupled by the
settlement and improvement of these trust lands. The enterprising and
industrious squatter has already given value, and afforded a market and
purchasers for land which otherwise would have been comparatively value-
less. Thus, the Indian gets an increased price for his land, which is useful
to him, v/hile the actual settler and laborious cultivator of the soil equitably
receives the fruits of his hard-earned toil.
Nothing will assist me so much in rendering permanent and enduring the
peace which now gladdens this beautiful country as the sale of the public
lands, and their ownership by an honest, enterprising, industrious, union-
loving population. I am earnestly solicitous to see every citizen who desires
to make his home among us the proprietor of 160 acres of land. This policy
will insure peace, bring prosperity and wealth, develop the moral sentiments
of the citizens, and make us a model people, and, in the not distant future, a
A portion of this territory, including an area of about 200 miles square from
the Missouri river westward, possesses all the elements of agricultural and
mineral wealth. For richness of soil and salubrity of climate, for its finely
timber-fringed streams and excellent building stone, it is unsurpassed by
any portion of this continent.
Governor Ocari/'s Adininistration. 269
Owing to the extreme productiveness of the soil, it is capable of support-
ing, with but little labor, an immense population, and, as fast as the Indian
title is extinguished to the reserves within its limits, will be populated by a
thriving and industrious people.
There will be plenty of room for all good people who desire to cast their
lots among us, and, if I mistake not the people of Kansas, they mean to
make no room for the bad.
I will coonerate with the citizens of this territory, so long as I am clothed
with the executive authority, in rendering Kansas too hot for bandits and
robbers, and affording full protection for life, liberty and property to every
To accomplish these beneficial results, I must rely upon the virtue, in-
telligence and patriotism of the people. Fellow citizens, will you aid me
this day and during the progress of these land sales to preserve the peace and
insure the prosperity of this territory? I know you will.
[Leavenworth Herald, November 22, 1856.]
TERRITORIAL UNIVERSITY MEETING AT LAWRENCE. GOVERNOR
GEARY UNABLE TO ATTEND.
Executive Department, Lecompton, Kansas Territory,
December 24, 1856.
Mr. W. F. M. Amy: Dear Sir â€” I regret extremely that it will be im-
possible for me to accept the invitation of the citizens of Lawrence, so po-
litely conveyed me by yourself, to attend the meeting they propose holding
to-morrow, for the purpose of taking the preliminary measures to establish
a territorial university.
The project meets my hearty approbation, and I shall rejoice to see the
citizens of the territory, without distinction of party, unite in petitioning
Congress for such an endowment of public land as will enable us to establish
in this, the geographical center of the union, such an educational institution
as will be an honor to the country and a constant source of blessing to our
I shall be most happy to unite with the people of Kansas in any measures
which shall most effectually secure this desired object. With great respect,
I am, your friend and obedient servant, JNO. W. GEARY.
[H. of L.. Jan. 3, 1857.]
EXPENDITURES FOR KANSAS MILITIA.
CAPTAINS VVALLIS'S, DONALDSON'S AND WALKER'S COMPANIES.
MESSAGE OP THE PRESIDENT.
To the Speaker of the House of Representatives:
In compliance with a resolution of the house of representatives of the 22d
ultimo, in relation to information with regard to expenditures and liabilities
for persons called into the service of the United States in the territory of
Kansas, I transmit the accompanying report of the secretary of war.
Washington, January 12, 1857.
War Department, Washington, January 10, 1857.
On the 24th ultimo, the secretary of state referred to this department a
copy of the resolution of the house of representatives of the 22d of the same
270 Kansas ^tate Historical Socletif.
month, calling upon the President for certain information with regard to
expenditures and liabilities for persons called into the service of the United
States in the territory of Kansas.
The reports of the quartermaster, paymaster, and adjutant-generals,
which I have the honor to submit herewith, contain all the information in this
department at this date on the subject of the resolution.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JEFFERSON DAVIS, Secretary of War.
Paymaster-General's Office, December 30, 1856.
Sir: I return herewith the rolls of Captains Wallis, Donaldson, and
Walker's companies of Kansas militia, and, agreeable to your request, have to
state that, under the existing law for the payment of militia (act of March 19,
1836), the amount required for their payment would be $7,848.76. But it
appears that one company has been paid as cavalry, and if this is sanctioned
it v/ill require a further sum of $260 to cover the payment.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
BENJAMIN F. LARNED, Paymaster-General.
Colonel S. Cooper, Adjutant-General United States Army.
Adjutant-General's OlSce, Washington, January 5, 1857.
Sir : In compliance with your instructions, and in answer to the resolution of