History

More Bloody Sesquicentennials

Today marks 150 years since Quantrill and his gang of brigands failed in their bid to find and tear Jim Lane limb-from-limb.  Instead, the Confederate “rangers” slaughtered 150-200 in Lane’s place of residence–Lawrence, Kansas.  Three weeks ago, I was flabbergasted to read that a William Clarke Quantrill Society has arisen in the “colonel’s” memory, actually … Continue reading

History

The July Crisis 3a: Colonel Edwin Vose Sumner

I: Kansas, 1855-56 President Franklin Pierce.  The “doughface” politician (a northerner that supported the slavery cause) hailing from New Hampshire from the beginning of his 1853-57 term twists himself in knots to stand behind Missouri and that state’s southern brethren: Kansas Territory’s proximity to Missouri ensured a substantial proslavery majority among the new settlers. Despite … Continue reading

History

The July Crisis Part 2: On Treason (In the Cabinet)

My previous post delved into the 1850s background which led to the demented “Bleeding Kansas” episode in American history, a series of skirmishes beginning in 1855 that eventually erupted into a border war which descending into a nineteenth-century La Violencia perpetuated by bushwhackers, jayhawkers, and conventional Union military units throughout Missouri after the official outbreak … Continue reading