Washington (DC) National Era, “Reports of the Kansas Press,” October 29, 1857

    Source citation
    “Reports of the Kansas Press,” Washington (DC) National Era, October 29, 1857, p. 175: 1-2.
    Original source
    Lawrence (KS) Republican
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    Lawrence Republican
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    Reports of the Kansas Press
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    Don Sailer, Dickinson College
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    The following text is presented here in complete form, as true to the original written document as possible. Spelling and other typographical errors have been preserved as in the original. 

    Reports of the Kansas Press.

    Election returns have been received from nearly every county in Kansas, and the result is, every district–except Leavenworth and Atchison districts–has gone overwhelmingly Free State. Such a disparity of strength was scarcely ever before exhibited between two contending parties for power, as is seen in the vote throughout all Kansas, except on the immediate Missouri border. Seventy to nothing–one hundred and fifty to three–two hundred and forty to nothing–nine hundred and five to eleven: this is the way the vote runs, where the polls were not convenient of access from Missouri. We said the Free State ticket was overwhelmingly victorious, except in the two districts mentioned. In this we slightly erred. According to the true vote cast in this district, the Free State party carried the day by thirteen hundred majority, out of an aggregate of about two thousand three hundred votes. All was right so far, and would stand so, except for the fraudulent returns mentioned elsewhere.

    Admitting, however, the Johnson county, and all other fraudulent returns, Marcus J. Parrott is elected by about three thousand majority, and Secretary Stanton has indicated his readiness to give him his certificate of election.

    Johnson county has sent up to the Secretary’s office returns giving for the county some seventeen hundred Pro-Slavery majority. The mass of these returns are from the Oxford Precient, a little town on the Missouri line; or, rather, the village, what there is of it, is on the Missouri side. There are not thirty legal voters living at that Precinct, and only some eighty were polled the first day. But the polls were kept open, or pretended to be, another day; and now, the pretence is made that from a thousand to fifteen hundred votes were polled the second day. Now, according to the census of the Pro-Slavery men themselves, Johnson county contains only four hundred and ninety-six voters, and a total population of only eight hundred and ninety inhabitants! Of course, such monstrous returns give prima facie evidence of being fraudulent throughout. A majority of ten hundred thousand would be just as reasonable and honest from Johnson county as this seventeen hundred majority.

    We learn that Secretary Stanton openly avows his conviction that the returns are fraudulent, and of course, under such circumstances, he can give no certificates based upon them. Indeed, should an attempt be made to defraud the members, rightfully elected by the people, of their seats, by the admission of these fraudulent returns, we think we speak advisedly when we say that the peace of the whole Territory would be immediately and most imminently hazarded thereby.

    The people of Kansas have staked their all, almost, upon this election, and now they will not stand it to be defrauded again out of their just rights. If it be again demonstrated to us that there is no reliance to be placed upon the ballot-box, what alternative is left but that of perpetual degradation and Slavery, or a prompt recurrence to the final resort of oppressed and down-trodden peoples? Those now in authority–especially the Secretary and Governor–have resting upon them at this moment, a most awful responsibility. Upon their wisdom and justice in this case depends the peace of Kansas, and, we may add, the peace and perpetuity of the Union.

    Let them beware, for they tread upon a volcano!

    The rights of the freemen of Kansas cannot long be tampered with through such damnable means. Federal bayonets will prove inefficient for the protection of members whose seats are thus fraudulently obtained, and who never can obtain them except through complicity of the Executive officers. Such officers shall be held first in responsibility to an outraged people. Should certificates be given on such fraudulent returns, let the people be prepared to settle this question in a manner that shall effectually put an end to military dictatorship and ruffian rule in Kansas.–Lawrence (Kansas) Republican, Oct. 15.

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