New York Times, “Affairs in Kansas,” February 9, 1857

    Source citation
    “Affairs in Kansas,” New York Times, February 9, 1857, p. 6: 2.
    Newspaper: Publication
    New York Daily Times
    Newspaper: Headline
    Affairs in Kansas
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    Newspaper: Column
    Date Certainty
    Meghan Allen, Dickinson College
    Transcription date
    The following text is presented here in complete form, as it originally appeared in print.  Spelling and other typographical errors have been preserved as in the original.


    The Territorial Legislature — Sketch of Proceedings — Women of Lawrence waging War against Liquor.

    Special Correspondence of the N. Y. Daily Times.

    LAWRENCE, K. T., Monday, Jan. 26, 1857.

    The Territorial Legislature was in session at Lecompton during last week. The council have passed an act declaring that portion of the Election Law requiring test-oaths, null and void. The House of Representatives will probably do the same.

    Several Companies, composed of the members, have been incorporated for various purposes,--for building Railroads to different parts of the Territory, establishing Banks, and navigating the Kaw River.

    A proposition to change the Judicial Districts of the Territory has been made by the Council, and will be adopted by the Legislature.


    Business is this city is good; building lots sell at high prices, and are constantly increasing in value. Only the prospect of peace has given a higher valuation to real estate, and nearly every one is beneficed by it. If we have no difficulty for six months, no one can form a just estimate of the advantage it will be to the Territory. But there are indications of a storm that will burst upon us in all its fury early in March, intended to secure the following objects: To prevent emigration from the Northern States,--to furnish an excuse for stopping and sending back parties coming up the river; to prevent our people form getting in their seed; to secure the adopting of a Pro-Slavery Constitution, and the final consummation of their intentions to make Kansas a Slave State.


    The women of Lawrence were out en masse this morning, bent on the destruction of all liquors found in the city. This indignant army were provided with axes, hatchets, and hammers. They were determined that the evil spirits of whiskey should no longer disturb the quiet of our town, and, the, to prevent it, a war of extermination was declared against the demon.

    Their plans and intentions were kept secret up to the time of attack, and all were taken by surprise. Seven rum-holes were discovered, entered, and a vigorous assault was made upon sundry barrels, casks, demijohns, &c., and the contents spilled out upon the ground. In one shop three barrels of whisky were discovered, hidden under a bed: women’s hands seized upon and rolled the same into the street, and by an application of many blows, a breach was made, the enemy surrendered, and whisky rolled in the snow, never to rise again, and all the women said amen.

    The whisky-dealers, and their customers, were indignant and swore vengeance: one of them rushed (after the destroyers had left) into the street with a Colt’s revolver in each hand, forgetting in the excitement of the hour, to put powder and ball into them.

    We are without law and cannot prevent the sale of intoxicating liquors by Statute. Some other way is resorted to. The failure of our men to put a stop to the traffic forces the women to the task; and they are determined on success. Last Spring, a similar duty was performed by them.


    I arrived here from Lawrence yesterday, in company with M.C.H. BRANSCOMB, who is now on his way to Washington, D.C., as bearer of dispatches from the Free-State Legislature. He also goes as an agent from the owners of the celebrated Half-breed Kaw lauds, to have measures taken to exclude the settlers who have taken possession of them. The Government was very prompt in preventing Governor REEDER from securing that tract, while settlers are permitted to “squat” upon them with impunity. The agent o the Kaw Indians attempted to drive off the squatters, and with United States Dragoons, burned their houses. The sovereigns refused to leave, and had the agent, MONTGOMERY, arrested, by authority of the bogus Courts, and is now held for trial.

    A ride over the prairies of Kansas at this season, with the thermometer below zero, is not very pleasant. The cold is more severe here than elsewhere, on account of the high winds which sweep over the soil with tremendous fury, having a very chilling effect upon travelers.


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