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English Quakers Tour Kansas in 1858

From the Journal of Sarah Lindsey

edited by Sheldon Jackson

February 1944 (Vol. 13 No. 1), pages 36 to 52.
Transcribed by lhn; digitized with permission of the
Kansas State Historical Society.

Kansas Historical Quarterly, February 1944I. INTRODUCTION

THE first recorded visit of Friends to the territory now comprising the state of Kansas was that of Henry Harvey, Simon Hadley and Solomon Haddon in 1833. Their purpose was to investigate the possibility of opening a mission among the Shawnee Indians in their new Western home. The mission was established in present Kansas, a short distance southwest of Westport Landing, in 1837. It operated until after the opening of Kansas for settlement, closing permanently in 1870. [1]

Quaker families began to enter the territory following the passage of the Kansas-Nebraska act in 1854, the first ones coming to Dragoon creek and to the vicinities of Shawnee Friends Mission, Leavenworth and the present city of Osawatomie. They tended to settle in groups or colonies, of which Springdale (near Leavenworth), Spring Grove (near Osawatomie), and Cottonwood (near Emporia) were the largest. Smaller settlements grew up near the Shawnee Friends Mission and at Le Roy. By the end of the year 1857 about 200 had come to these settlements.

The settlers early began to meet in private homes on each first day [2] morning, later adding fourth day morning services. The meetings were usually silent throughout, for no Friends minister had yet emigrated to Kansas territory. Interruptions to their routine were frequent during the border-ruffian conflicts of 1855-1856 and the Friends doctrine of non- resistance received some severe trials. The danger at times became so great that some families would drive to the Shawnee Friends Mission for refuge, or cross into Missouri, until the immediate threat was past.

In March, 1858, these isolated groups were greatly encouraged by the welcomed visit of two itinerant English ministers, Robert and Sarah Lindsey. Typical of the traveling ministers among Quakers



of the nineteenth century, these were a source of strength to the society. Robert Lindsey [3] had begun his ministry in 1844, visiting Friends in neighboring communities to his home town in England. Two years later he informed his monthly meeting [4] of his "concern" [5] to visit the Friends meetings in Ireland, for which service he was "liberated," and was absent from home three months. When he returned he found that Benjamin Seebohm was soon to make a religious visit to North America, whereupon they decided to make the journey together. In October, 1846, Lindsey and Seebohm sailed from Liverpool. The extensive tour of Friends in North America which followed occupied four years and eight months. During this period, he wrote, they "traveled on the American continent by land and by water 32,373 miles, two-thirds at least of that distance in our own private conveyance. . . . The rest . . . was performed by steamboat, railroad cars, [and] public stage." They "attended in that time 966 Meetings for Worship." [6] Kansas was not included in this tour, however, for it was not yet opened for settlement and the only Friends there were the missionaries at the Shawnee Friends Mission.

Hardly had the two returned to England in 1851 when Robert again felt called to go, this time to Australia, with Frederic Mackie as companion. In the course of this journey he was absent from home three and one-half years and traveled through New Zealand, Australia, and South Africa.

After spending a year and a half at home, he again felt it his duty to visit foreign lands. This time his wife accompanied him, and they were given a "minute" [7] to visit "all the isolated families of Friends in the world." They set out in 1857 on this ambitious undertaking, and spent two years in visiting the United States, Canada, and Nova Scotia. It was in the course of this journey that they visited the


scattered settlements of Friends in Kansas, enduring "many privations and rough accommodations." They were in Kansas in Mare and April, in Iowa in April and May, and then on into the North and East. In June, 1859, they heft New York for California, going to the Isthmus of Panama by sea, crossing the Isthmus by rail, an continuing up the coast by boat. They spent considerable time o the West coast, preparing the way for the establishment of the first Friends meetings in that area. Hawaii, Australia, Tasmania, and South Africa were also visited before they returned to England from this last journey in July, 1861. [8]

Robert Lindsey kept a careful record in his diaries until the last journey, on which Mrs. Lindsey wrote the diary. The diary itself is preserved in the Devonshire House Library in London. There is an excellent manuscript copy of it in the Quaker collection of the Haverford College Library, and it is from this manuscript copy that the selections were taken which are here reproduced. [9]

After landing at New Orleans, the couple had an eventful journey by river steamer up the Mississippi to St. Louis. The portion of the diary here printed begins with their departure from St. Louis March 17, 1858. Sarah Lindsey's account of the trip up the Missouri rive from St. Louis to Kansas City is an illustration of the vicissitude of traveling this most popular of the routes into Kansas in those years. In their ten-mile trip from the landing at Kansas City to the Shawnee Friends Mission they got their first taste of frontier high prices and speculation-a charge of five dollars for the last six miles.

The Indians at the mission interested them, especially the severs. who attended the first day meeting. Leaving the mission on March 22, they set out for the Springdale settlement, about thirty miles north, with Caleb Harvey and his wife. The road was new to them all and they were repeatedly host, so that it took them over fourteen hours to make the thirty-mile journey. They finally arrived at the house of Wm. Coffin, however, and held a meeting on the 24th in the meeting house with forty present. Benajah Hiatt here offered to convey them to the other settlements of Friends in Kansas in his covered wagon. Thus equipped they proceeded to Spring Grove, then across the high prairie to Le Roy and up the Neosho river to the Cottonwood settlement. Thomas Stanley's residence (near the present town of Americus) and Henry Harvey's home on Dragoon


creek were stops on the way back to the mission. Having completed their tour,Sarah would have been glad to heave Kansas, but Robert had become increasingly concerned about a hack of unity between some of the members in the Cottonwood settlement. Returning to Emporia, they were able to relieve the situation in a conference. This completed their work in Kansas. They retraced their journey . to the Friends mission and were driven to Kansas City by Caleb Harvey, having been in the territory near four weeks.

It is interesting to note the reactions of these English visitors to the rough frontier conditions. Having been used to the comforts of their English home they were appalled by the inadequate housing, lack of furniture, and rough life in these settlements. This did not deter them from the object of their visit, however, and their ministry was a great blessing to those pioneers who had just gone through the trying slavery controversies and were enduring the pioneer hardships in their isolated homes. Benajah Hiatt states that their ministry was prophetic and inspiring, resulting in many conversions. He relates that most of the meetings were held in groves of trees, the entire community, both Friends and others, coming to hear the English visitors. [10]

Soon after the Lindseys' visit, permanent meetings were established among these groups, and others sprang up as more settlers came in. Kansas Quakers were granted a yearly meeting of their own in 1872, with 2,620 members. Subsequent increase has made it one of the larger yearly meetings of America, with a membership of 8,610 and headquarters in Wichita.


18th 3 mo. [1858] Left St. Louis at 3 p. m. yesterday on our way to Kansas. Proceeded 125 miles by rail to Jefferson City, & from thence by steam boat up the Missouri river about 325 miles In usual course we should have arrived at Jefferson City at 9 o'clock the same evening, but after proceeding about 16 miles the trails stopped and the passengers were informed that there was an obstruction in the way, & we were desired to heave the carriage and walk about 1/2 a mile over a hill thro' which there was a tunnel. So taking our light luggage along with us we ascended the rugged & stony hill, partly through the mud where there was no road; and the descent was very steep. On regaining the railway we found ourselves at the further end of the tunnel where a quantity of rock & earth had


fallen. The heavy luggage was carried over the hill on men's shoulders, and a number of workmen were employed in removing the obstruction, but some of the stones were so large that they had to blaster them with gunpowder. We walked a short distance to the next station where we waited several hours until the train arrived from Jefferson City on its way to St. Louis, when the passengers left the train to walk over the hill as we had done, & we took their seats and proceeded on our way, but owing to the engine being behind, instead of at the front of the train, we got along very slowly: and missed getting our afternoon meal, except a little fruit pie at 11 p. m. After traveling all night about 4 a. m. we breakfasted at a small station and after proceeding a little further we met with a second detention from another fall of earth. The line of railway runs close by and parallel with the Missouri river, while high rocks, and almost perpendicular bluffs rise from the other side. From various detentions we lost about 14 hours, and did not reach Jefferson City until 11 o'clock this morning. The steam boat was waiting for the train, and we were quickly on board, & sailing up the river. The scenery on our right hand is bold & rocky; on the left the land is flat and mostly covered with a small growth of forest trees. We had an abundant supply of good & well cooked provisions set upon the table with much taste. The water of the Missouri is very muddy & yellow, yet it is used for all purposes on board the boats.

20th. 3 mo. Yesterday we passed Miami & Brunswick, small villages: the day was oppressively hot but in the evening the wind arose, and we had a heavy storm, of thunder, lightning, & rain, during which our boat was put close to the shore, where we remained several hours until the storm abated. Great care is required to steer clear of sandbanks, & great numbers of trees are washed from the shore and carried down by the stream until they become fixed in the sand, some with the roots downward and the trunk standing above the surface of the water: and it is dangerous to get amongst the snags as they are called. We see numbers of wild geese of dark plumage on the sand banks & along the shore; they rise & fly in the air, seeming to enjoy their unbounded liberty.

21st. 3 mo. First day morning. At the Friends Mission for the Shawnese Indians in Kansas. About 5 o'clock yesterday afternoon we arrived at Kansas City on the borders of the Missouri & Kansas states. This place has only been open for white settlers about 2 years, [11] but the Friends Mission has been established much longer


and occupies many acres of rising ground. The City is rapidly increasing, and contains many good stores & houses built of brick. We proceeded 4 miles by a stage coach; but as the Mission was 6 miles further, & the sun near setting, we seemed obliged to pay the driver 5 dollars as the smallest sum he would convey us for. We soon crossed the boundary line & entered the state [territory] of Kansas, where prairie land opened before us-a deep black soil carpeted with grass. On reaching the Mission we were kindly welcomed by the Superintendant Simon Harvey, who with his wife & daughter; a young man Caleb Harvey &his wife-the former of whom has charge of the farm, a female teacher, & a domestic assistant forms their staff. During the winter 24 Indian children were boarded & taught gratis, but owing to an epidemic only ten remain in the school at present.

23rd. 3 mo. Third day. On first day we attended the meeting which is held in the schoolroom when we had the company of several Indians who were civilized and well dressed; two of the men & one of the wives dined with us, the men spoke good English.

During the late disturbances in Kansas two years ago, the Mission friends were threatened with disturbance from the pro slavery party: the school was discontinued for some time and the premises left in charge of a man & his wife. [12] The friends were much discouraged on their return to find things much out of order and no crops to meet the wants of the family, but their prospects have now brightened.

We left Missouri [the Mission?] yesterday accompanied by C. Harvey & his wife to visit a settlement of friends on Strangers creek 11 miles S. W. of Levensworth City. Our conveyance was an open wagon: all of us being strangers to the road we had to make frequent inquiries. Crossed the Kansas river on a flat owned by a respectable Indian who was well dressed & spoke pretty good Eng


lish: understanding that some of his children could read we gave him some small books. His dwelling was a good frame house, and he owned 800 acres of land,some of which he pointed out lying along the banks of the river. He seemed under discouragement, remarking "White men fight." On enquiry we found that about 2 months ago one of his brothers found some white men cutting down timber upon his land, & on going to expostulate with them, one of the party shot & killed him. The murderer escaped, but some others were caught & imprisoned.

The Kansas river is the boundary line between the Kansas & Shawnee Indians. There are at present 850 of the former tribe & 900 of the latter. We are now on the Delaware lands which extend 40 miles in length & 10 in breadth. Passed a Mission [13] for the Indians, & traveled many miles of prairie land without seeing either man, beast, or house. The prairies are now covered with withered grass, which is burnt off in spring & we saw some on fire. In this state [territory] the Indians hold 200 acres of land each: i. e. if a man has a wife & 4 children the family have 1200 acres but in general they only cultivate a little for their own support, and the rest lies waste, making fine hunting grounds. [14]

In crossing an unbroken prairie, several miles in extent, & not knowing which way to proceed, we came to a stand, and at a distance observed 3 Indians mounted on horseback coming towards us; on their advance the party seemed to consist of a man & his wife & 2 children; the woman had a yellow handkerchief bound round her temples, & a long yellow scarf round her neck, with a red blanket over her shoulders, enclosing a babe upon her knee: various ornaments hung from her saddle, and altogether she had quite an imposing appearance. On one of the man's boots I observed a large spur, the stirrups were made of wood, & covered with leather which came up to the ankle. The Indian was well dressed & tried to give us some information about our journey. After proceeding some miles we became uneasy, thinking we were going in the wrong direction, and on coming to a cross road altered our track. There are numerous natural roads over the prairies, and we often see Indian trails where they ride on horseback two or 3 abreast, & the roads having been washed with rain appear like deep furrows. At length we were cheered by the sight of a house, and a man directed


us to Captain Wolfe's for information. Here we found good farm buildings, and a respectable looking family, apparently consisting of 3 generations. As we sat waiting in the carriage the captain, a fine looking man, came from the woods accompanied by several men with an ox team. The Indians are generally shy & retiring, some young women were peeping at us in the background, & finding that some of them could read, we left books. We got some information respecting the situation of the locality of our friends, but were still at a loss as to the point to aim at. After being on the road 14 hours, when within 4 miles of our place of destination we fouled a man who knew some of our friends and their settlement, so we hired him as guide to Strangers creek, which we forded & in a short time reached the house of Wm. Coffin, [15] which was only 30 miles from the Friends Mission. Wm. Coffin is a son of our worthy friend Elijah Coffin of Richmond, Indiana; he has been here 4 years & is still living in a small log cabin.

4th. 3 mo. Fourth day. Had a meeting with the friends settled in the locality in a log building, used both as a meeting house & school room. [16] About 40 persons, including children, were present: the Lord was mercifully pleased to own us, and my dear husband ministered to us, commencing with the text: "A man's life consisteth not in the abundance of things which he possesseth ;" "Godliness with contentment is great gain." And the watchword to some seemed to be, "If riches increase, set not your heart upon them." Counsel & caution followed, and we had a favored time together.

Dined at Benajah Hyatt's [Hiatt] whose wife is Sarah Coffin's sister. In the evening rode a few miles to the habitation of Henry Worthington, a log cabin of one room 12 feet square. This friend who has a wife & 5 children came here from Philadelphia about 6 Mo. ago. They had been used to the comforts & refinements of good society; but being unfortunate in business, they had taken land come out here. We were much interested in seeing them all trying


to do what they could in their humble cot; a little corner was shielded off where we slept, the rest of the family sleeping in beds in the same room.

26th. 8 mo. Yesterday morning H. W. drove us in his ox team to the house of Thomas Newby, a distance of 6 miles a long & weary drive occupying about 3 hours, & we crossed several ravines. Found our friend, with his wife & 2 small children living in a rude log hut. We spent a few hours in social converse, and had a little spiritual refreshment to hand them. On our return called to see James Wilson & wife, an interesting young couple with whom we had an interesting opportunity. After a parting opportunity with our host & his wife, accompanied by our truly kind friend, Benajah Hiatt, we set out in a covered wagon to visit the other settlements of our friends in this state [territory]. The little company at Strangers creek suffered much during the late disturbances; the pro-slavery party stopping supplies of food. When steamboats reached Leavenworth City from the free states, they were often plundered of their stores, & goods &c. sent back. And supplies coming from the settlers were seized to feed the soldiers of the pro-slavery men, and altho' thus circumstanced, it was perilous to leave their homes. Some of the families removed for a time, & several of their horses were stolen. Leavenworth City is erected on the banks of the Missouri river about 11 miles from our friends location on Stranger's creek. 3 years ago this site which has been chosen for the city, was overgrown with high bushes, but now many good wholesale & retail stores have been erected, and comfortable houses, with a population of 9,000 persons. The neighbouring settlers here find a ready market for their produce.

Some of the first settlers in the country gave only 21/2 dollars pr. acre for their land which is well situated, with a good supply of timber & water. The bluffs abound with good stone; limestone is abundant; & there is plenty of wild fruit, consisting of gooseberries, plums, grapes, &c., &c. There is a constant stream of fresh air on the prairies, & the friends have wisely chosen sites for their cabins on the open ground instead of amongst the trees & creeks in the valleys, where chill & fever often prevail. But to proceed with our journey. Passing thro' the Delaware Indians reservation, we rode about 12 miles over the open prairie without passing a single house; the first we came to was a good new frame house belonging to an Indian chief, and was used as an hotel. Some of the best houses we see here are two stories high & belong to the Indians. They generally locate themselves on the margin of rivers & creeks, beside


the woods. As we rode along, the horses gave a sudden start & turned on one side; when the driver told us he had checked them on observing a rattlesnake in our path, coiled up & ready to strike. We all alighted, & on looking back observed the reptile with head erect, but our driver soon killed him with his whip & took the rattle from his tail. It is well that the rattle is set in motion & heard in time to avoid being struck by these venomous creatures. His color was a' light brown, and his length about 2 feet. There is a plant called the rattlesnake's master, which grows abundantly on the prairies which, when applied, takes the venom from the bite, hot stimulants being taken at the same time.

During the day we forded two rivers, the Ottawa, & Osage. As the day closed we came in sight of a house, & made our way to it, to ask for lodgings; but finding only a company of men, we were directed to another house at some distance which we found to be a large cabin inhabited by a large family of respectable persons. Being told that they had other company & could only admit us on the condition of occupying beds upon the floor, we were discouraged but as the next house was some miles further we tried to feel thankful that we had a shelter over our heads. Supper was prepared for us, and on wishing to retire, how thankful we were that without any contrivance of our own, my dear R. L. & self were shown to a good bed with curtains, the man & his wife occupied another bed in the same room; our friend had a bed laid upon the floor, and the other inmates occupied a loft.

28th 8 mo. First day. Yesterday we found the prairies more level with high bluffs, & stones were abundant, and we passed numerous creeks enriched by thick belts of trees. Part of our route lay over the Ottawa Indian reservation, and as usual found them living on the banks of a creek. In general they are not fond of work, but like to hire white men to work for them. They receive annuities from the government for land which has been sold which makes them feel independent, but some of them begin to copy from the white man & farm their land better.

Made about 35 miles during the day, crossing Middle creek, & the Pottawattnia [Pottawatomie]. We met with a kind welcome from Simon Jones & family who live near Osawattami [Osawatomie]. Eleven families of friends are located around here, some of which are numerous; there are 59 members including children. For sometime a meeting for worship has been held at one or another of their houses which is frequently attended by some of their neighbours.


This morning the meeting was held out of doors, and an awning put up to shelter us from the wind, planks were arranged for seats, and about 100 persons were present. The canopy of divine love was felt to spread over us, and ability was afforded to preach the gospel of life & salvation. After meeting we dined at David Mendenalls, [17] and returned to S. Jones in the evening where we were most affectionately waited on by his children whose greatest pleasure seemed to be anticipating our wants. This family removed here from N. Carolina 8 months ago; their farm consists of 160 acres for which they paid 500 dollars. In the evening we had a meeting with the family which cleared the way for our departure.

30th 3 mo. Rode over flat prairies yesterday, bounded by long low bluffs. Passed thro' the town of Hyatt, which consists of two houses. Some other houses & improved farms lay on our way. We rode 20 miles, and only passed one dwelling house. Crossed the Pottawattania creek at Greely, a small town consisting of a few huts. Sometimes as far as the eye could reach we could see neither house nor tree. Most of the creeks have high banks. but some of them are nearly dry at present, which is much to our advantage. In summer numerous buffaloes cross the plains & there are many wild deer, but we only observed a solitary wolf at a distance.

The natural roads over the prairies are generally very good, but some are rather indistinct, sometimes a furrow is ploughed up to skew the track. It was nearly dark before we came in sight of a house, and found shelter under the roof of a settler named Pearson who we found was born a member of our society, but did not retain his membership. Two families of friends reside at Le Roy where we had a meeting the following day at the house of R. Davis, who has a wife & one child. Their dwelling is made of rough logs laid one upon another without the interstices being closed; there is no window but an opening for a door, tho' it is only an opening, the floor is nature's covering & very uneven from the projecting roots of trees: and there is a recess for a fire place, but no chimney. The furniture consists of two beds, two chairs, a few boxes, & mirror, &c., &c. A number of chairs were brought from the neighbours and here in the midst of the woods 15 persons assembled for the purpose of divine worship. The Lord owned us in our solitary situation, and counsel & encouragement to some present were given, prayer was also offered for their preservation.


Dinner was prepared for us at a neighbour's house after which we rode 15 miles to Hampden, part of the way lying along what is called Neosia [Neosho river] bottoms, low wet land. On arriving at the village, we were received into the house of Perry Mills, who has a wife and a large family.

1st 4 mo. We have had a meeting in a school house, 26 persons present, and my R. L. addressed us from the text: "All scripture is given by inspiration from God, and is profitable for reproof, correction, doctrine, &c."

The frequent reading of these records was encouraged, and the nature of true worship & prayer described, & the difference shown between those prayers which were conceived in the heart and those which were only uttered in a formal manner by the lips. Perry Mills suffered much during the late political disturbances, being twice taken prisoner while going about his lawful business. The ruffians made preparation & were intending to hang him, had it not been for the interference of another man who knew him. A considerable number of his cattle were taken away, besides provisions stores which were for sale. These things reduced their means very much. Their house containing two rooms is a very humble dwelling, but we were lodged & treated with great hospitality. P. M. is a very energetic man, and we hope he will soon be able to overcome his present depressing circumstances. Our next stage was to Emporia, distant 35 miles. Part of the road was thro' fine rich prairie land, passing the little town of Autumia [Ottumwa?] situated on rising ground. The last ten miles was a flat lonely district and we only passed a single house. Night closed upon us, and it appeared as if we should have to remain in the carriage all night upon the open "plain, but at a distance at last were cheered by seeing a light which proved to be only a store. However we were directed to a house at a little distance, but found it newly built & in a very unfinished condition, & the man said they were not prepared to accommodate us; but we were admitted under the roof, and we found two rooms without windows, and we had to sleep close by a large opening thro' which we had abundance of damp air from the river close by the house; but by putting up a screen we did not suffer from the exposure.

Next morning we crossed the Neosha river and came to Emporia, but found two of the friends houses locked up, and had to drive 2 or 3 miles further before reaching two other families who were living n log cabins. One family consisted of a man & his wife and 8


children, several of whom were grown up. A meeting was occasionally held in one of their houses; and arrangements were made for a meeting. On returning to Emporia we found a decent inn where we took up our quarters, and were glad to have a little quiet; and esteemed it a great favor to having a lodging room to ourselves.

2nd 4 mo. Attended the appointed meeting at Curtis Hyatt's, Cottonwood creek on Neosia river where about 30 members of our society met us, including children; several of the neighbours were present & there seemed to be great openness in speaking of those things which apertain to our present & eternal welfare. At my dear husband's request the friends remained after the meeting, when he had a more private opportunity of expressing his feelings of Christian interest on their behalf. It seemed that some of them were but little known to each other. Dined at Andrew Henshaw's, where we met with Thomas Stanley [18] who gave us directions to his house where we had fixed to go the following day. Having endeavored to draw the scattered members of our society in these parts together, and my R. L. feeling his mind relieved, we have much enjoyed a leisure afternoon, spent in writing in our little private bedroom.

4th 4 mo. First day. At Thomas Stanley's 8 miles from Emporia. This individual along with his wife & children are living in a temporary one roomed house the walls of which are of rough boards driven into the ground. T. S. has interested himself a good deal about the Caw Indians, and is now awaiting the decision, respecting the settlement of land to which this tribe of Indians are supposed to have a claim, but which is disputed by some of the white settlers. This tribe moves about, & lives in tents, being but partly civilized, but they wish T. Stanley to open a mission for them. Our friends gave us the best lodging their frail house afforded. The wind has been high during the night.

5th 4 mo. The night was cold & frosty, & owing to the numerous chinks in the walls & roof, it seemed likely that we should suffer from such an unusual stream of fresh air, but we do not seem to have taken cold from the exposure. Held a meeting in a new house where we had the company of the neighbours; the room was well filled & the Lord was near strengthening for service. Left after dinner, T. Stanley accompanying us, to a creek called 142, where we lodged. In the drive we ran over a rattlesnake & partly killed,


our friends alighting to complete its destruction. Next day we proceeded to Henry Harvey's, who has been interested, and spent much time & labor on behalf of the Indians. He lives on Drago[o]n creek, [19] but we were sorry to find he was not at home, but were kindly cared for by his wife, a delicate woman, & his sons.

The day has been very cold, windy, & wet,and we were glad to find a shelter, but sorry to see the family of such a self sacrificing friend living in such an humble dwelling with so few of the comforts of life.

6th 4 mo. On the 6th rode 40 miles to Bloomington, having had a meeting with the different branches of C. Harvey's family the preceding evening. Lodged at Edwin Stokes' who had a birthright in our society & his brother is still a member. Called to see Shubal Sevain, who had an accident lately & lost several fingers from his left hand; and he is now confined to bed with a broken leg. He has a wife & several children; we had a religious opportunity with the family. Had an appointed meeting in a school house. My dear husband had good service in the ministry, dwelling particularly on the Atonement; the knee was afterwards bowed in prayer. At the close of the meeting a man arose, & requested leave to ask a few questions; but my R. L. replied that having fulfilled his mission he did not wish to be detained. We had heard that some noted infidels were in the neighbourhood and he proved to be the leader amongst them. Altho' there are 25 friends settled around, they are not in the practise of meeting together for Divine worship.

16th 4 mo. Kansas City, Missouri. I trust our visit to Bloomington may have been useful to some who now seem resolved to begin the reasonable and needful duty of holding religious meetings. Surely we require the pure mind stirring up, or we may get into the lukewarm & benumbed condition. Great is the loss which some persons sustain by going into isolated situations where religion is at a low ebb. Taking leave of our kind friends, the Stokes family, we forded the river, & drove about [20] miles partly thro' the Shawnese reservation, to the house of Henry Wilson who has a wife & 4 children. He had been in the employ of a respectable Indian named Charles Fish, but is now renting some land from him, & is living in a log cabin belonging to some of C. Fish's family.[8th 4 me.] On 5th day the 8th had a meeting in our friends cabin where Levi Wood ward, wife & child came to meet us. An Indian named Pascal Fish,


with his wife & son also gave us their company. The Wing of Divine Goodness was felt to spread over us, and we had an interesting season, wherein counsel & close things were spoken to some present. Prayer was also offered. On separating the Indian seemed to regret that we had not taken up our quarters at his house, as he had room &c., and could have found food for ourselves, and corn for our horses: he requested that we would pray for them.

The Indians were well dressed, & the man spoke good English. In the afternoon rode to the town of Lawrence. As we had now visited the different settlements of our friends in Kansas, we should have been glad to leave the state [territory], but my dear R. L. did not feel his mind relieved in regard to the friends in Emporia, between some of whom there was a want of unity, so we returned to that place, altho it caused us two days journey. Lodged at the house of Milton Chamness, after which there was a conference between the parties referred to, which ended to satisfaction.

We called to see Jonathan Wheeler's family; he has a wife & 8 children who reside in a one roomed cabin upon the open prairie. The house had no windows & but few of the comforts & conveniences of life within: the bare uneven ground was covered with a little hay.

16th 4 mo. Jonathan Wheeler's house was scantily furnished; round the sides of the house several trunks of trees enclosed loose lay, which with cross timber, without bed stocks, formed several sleeping places for the night. A large box was used as a table, two or three chairs, & smaller boxes served for seats, a few open shelves held the crockery ware, and a small cupboard contained their stock of books. But in the midst of this humble abode contentment seemed to dwell, and a smile played upon many of the happy faces around us. This family have taken up 160 acres of land and seem likely to do well. We had a meeting with them to satisfaction; many of us would think their lot a hard one, but we had cause to believe that the Son of Peace had taken up His abode in some of their hearts.


Dined with our young friends A. Henshaw & wife, then had a cold windy ride to Duck creek where we lodged. Next morning the ground was covered with snow, and we had a stormy drive over the open prairie, 15 miles of our route being through the Sac & Fox Indian reservation where we did not see a single house, & only crossed two creeks. Dined at Burlingham [Burlingame?], and lodged at Henry Hyatt's at Twin Mounds, the place taking its name from two oblong natural elevations which are seen from a distance & appear as if they lead been cast in a mold. H. Hyatt was once a member of our society. Here we met with a person named William Denton who is a noted infidel, and the individual who attended the meeting which my R. L. had at Bloomington. He removed to this country from Darlington about nine years ago; he was acquainted with the Pease's family. We could agree with a remark he made; that this country suited persons holding views similar to his own better than England.

On leaving the house H. Hyatt refused to take money for our accommodations. Rode to Lawrence next morning where we parted from our truly kind friend Benajah Hyatt who has been our driver & faithful companion for nearly 3 weeks, during which time he has given us much information upon subjects relating to the recent disturbances in Kansas, some of which were of a most tragical nature, being cold blooded murders & attrocities, such as are seldom heard of in this age of the world amongst civilized nations. We were intending to proceed to the Friends Mission by public stage but all the seats were engaged. A note had been sent to the hotel for my R. L. from L. N. Wood [Samuel N. Wood?], an entire stranger to us, but a descendant of friends, who having heard of our arrival invited us to his house to remain either a day, or a month, as suited our convenience; so we spent the afternoon & lodged there, and his wife, a well educated & sensible woman, treated us kindly. L. N. Wood is a lawyer by profession & seems to be in easy circumstances. The family are living in a temporary house, but a little snug bed was prepared for us in the loft, the ascent of which was by irregular boards some of which bent as we trod upon them. Took leave of our kind friends the following morning and went to the Mission, a distance of 35 miles by public stage. For nearly two weeks there has been a cloudy atmosphere but now the sun shines in the clear blue sky.

Within the last week we have seen abundance of wild plum & gooseberry trees in full blossom. The prairie chickens are like a little speckled pullet, and very numerous, if we come near they take wing & fly a short distance. The larks build their nests upon the ground, & sing a short sweet plaintive note; but in other respects are unlike our English birds bearing that name. Spent fifth day with our friends at the Mission: the mid-week meeting was an interesting season wherein my dear husband had some service. A friend named James Stanley20 who had just arrived in the state


[territory] along with wife & 3 children called in the evening. J. S. is a joiner by trade and has come here with the prospects of stationing himself among one of the Indian tribes to instruct them in manual labor & to endeavour to raise their condition in other respects. The poor Indians have been driven from one place to another, until some of the Shawnese & other civilized tribes are intending to become citizens of the United States. Some of the natives have married white persons. In riding along we do not see many Indians & but seldom pass their habitations. They are generally shy & retiring; we saw two squaws in Lawrence, one of whom was clad in a scarlet, & the other in a yellow dress, & blankets were thrown over their shoulders like a cloak.

This morning, the 16th, 4 mo., we arose very early and taking a final leave of our friends at the Mission, were accompanied by C. Harvey who drove us to Kansas City in a wagon. The road was thronged with emigrants who were just entering the state [territory] : some in covered wagons had been camping for the night, and having kindled a fire were preparing breakfast. Others were walking with their bags & bundles. On approaching the river we had the mortification to see the steamboat by which we expected to proceed, start from the shore & sail without us; not knowing when another of that class might be passing, we went to an inn where I spent some hours in posting up my journal, but being on the tiptoe of expectation we had an uncomfortable day. We retired to rest and got a few hours sleep; and at an early hour the following morning we heard the steam whistle, & before 6 a. m. were on board the "Meteor." Much rain fell during the night accompanied by thunder & lightning. Our boat is rather small but a fast sailer; we have not many fellow passengers. On first day morning we held our meeting in our cabin, rather a dull heavy season to myself; wherein I felt my own weakness & inability to help myself. It is not usual for the boats on the Missouri to run thro' the dark nights: but our captain being desirous of reaching Jefferson City, ran until 8 P. M., when we struck upon a sand bank, and notwithstanding all the skill & ingenuity which the accident called forth we were not afloat until daylight next morning. Reached Jefferson City about 7 A. M. just in time to take the train to St. Louis where we arrived in 6 hours.


1. This group of Shawnees had been moved in 1832-1833 from their Ohio reservation to a new location west and south of Kansas City. For a history of the mission (located in the SW1/4 see. 7, T. 12, R. 25) see Hobbs, Wilson, "The Friends' Establishment in Kansas Territory," in Kansas Historical Collections, v. VIII, pp. 250-271. This article also gives information on some of the other early Friends settlements in Kansas.
2. Early Friends refused to use the names Sunday, Monday, etc., for the days of the week, because the names had been taken from pagan gods. They called the days of the week by their numerals: First day, second day, etc. Similarly the months were designated as First month, second month, third month, etc.
3. Robert Lindsey was born at Gildersome, in Yorkshire, England, in 1801, the son of a woolen cloth manufacturer. He learned the drapery business early and began business for himself when about twenty-four years old. In 1828 he married a Quaker girl, Sarah Crosland, of Bolton, in Lancashire. He was engaged in business and was heard in ministry only occasionally until 1843 when the family inherited a small fortune. Soon thereafter Robert Lindsey embarked on the first of his many travels, Sarah accompanying him on the last one. He died in 1863 and Mrs. Lindsey in 1876.-Travels of Robert and Sarah Lindsey (London, Samuel Harris and Ca., 1886), by Elizabeth Lindsey Galleway, a daughter. Although this book contains biographical information on the Lindseys and extracts from their diaries, it only briefly touches upon Mr. and Mrs. Lindsey's journey through the United States in 1858 when Kansas was visited.
4. A monthly meeting is the local business meeting in the organization of Friends.
5. Friends placed great emphasis upon being "led by the Spirit." When the Spirit "moved" a minister to visit a distant meeting, he expressed this as his "concern" to visit said meeting.
6. Galleway, op. cit., pp. 49, 50.
7. When Friends ministers traveled in other localities they took with them credentials Called "minutes," prepared by their local meetings. 8. Galloway, op. cit., pp. 134-185.
9. From v. I (1857-'58), pp. 175-200, and v. II, pp. 3-9.
10. Letter of Benajah Hiatt to Herman Newman, n. d., in possession of Herman Newman, Newtown, Pa.
11. Kansas territory was opened for settlement in 1854 under the provisions of the Kansas-Nebraska act, signed by Pres. Franklin Pierce, May 30, 1854.
12. In the Minutes of Indiana Yearly Meeting for the year 1856 is recorded this account of the affair:
The 20th of 8th month last [1856], . . a body of armed men, 18 in number, came to the Establishment, took all the horses and saddles on the premises, and the Superintendent going out, asked them to leave him one of the horses to send to obtain a physician for his wife, who was lying sick in the house, when the captain of the band gave utterance to profane and abusive language, and presenting his gun at him, in that threatening attitude told him, this was only a beginning of what he might look for if he did not leave the place.
The Superintendent returning to the house, the commander told the hired man, who was present on the occasion, that if he came out again he would shoot him. The day previous a number of the Indian children had been taken away from the school by their parents, who gave as a reason, their fear that there would be an attack made upon the Establishment. These facts, together with the reports of threatened violence toward the inmates, and the destruction of the buildings, induced our Superintendent to come to the conclusion that the present safety of himself and family, and the Friends employed there, required him Present and accordingly on the 23rd of the 8th month last, they all left the Territory for the safety of their homes, returning to their homes in Indiana.
The premises were left in charge of a hired man by the name of John Denny, and his wife, and we learn from late accounts received from him, that no further acts of violence have been committed.
13. Probably the Delaware Baptist mission and school operated by the Rev. John G.Pratt.
14. As early as 1854 treaties with certain Indian tribes permitted Indians under some conditions, and if they so desired, to hold 200 acres of land each. The statement obviously does not apply, however, to every Indian then roaming within the boundaries of the territory.
15. William H. Coffin came to Kansas in 1854, settling near Leavenworth in 1855. An excellent account of his coming to Kansas and the establishment and growth of the Stranger (later called Springdale) settlement is found in Kansas Historical Collections, v. VII, pp. 322-361.
16, This school is described by V. K. Stanley, the first teacher, in The Kansas Educator, Hutchinson, February, 1905.
This primitive school house . was built of small oak logs. not hewn, cut from a grove nearby. The cracks were stopped with split pieces of timber, commonly called 'chinks' and mortar composed of mud and prairie grass roots. The building plastered in good shape for that day. It had one three-light and two, two-light windows, the glass being 8 x 10 inches. The flooring was rough and the roof was composed of three foot boards riven out of oak timber, on Stranger river two miles east. The roof was held on by weight poles such as were commonly used in that day. The furniture consisted of seats made of slabs, with no backs, and four pegs for the legs. Boards were fastened to the wall .near the windows where the pupils did their writing. The teacher's stool was a block sawed from the end of the log, about eighteen inches in diameter, and his desk nothing more than a board, fifteen inches wide and three feet long, fastened to the wall in one corner.
17. David Mendenhall and his brother, Richard, were the first Friends to settle in the Spring Grove neighborhood.
18. Thomas Stanley was a well-known Quaker missionary to the Indians. Having served three years (1842-1845) at the Shawnee Friends Mission, he moved among the Kaw Indians in 1857 and carried on an independent work among them until they were moved to Indian territory. Later he was active in the Friends work among the Indians in present Oklahoma.
19. For an account of the early settlement on Dragoon creek see Stephen Jackson Spear's "Reminiscences of the Early Settlement of Dragoon Creek, Wabaunsee County," in Kansas Historical Collections, v. XIII, pp. 345-363. See, also, biographical sketch of Henry Harvey, ibid., p. 348, footnote.
20. James Stanley was a younger brother of Thomas Stanley, and was also a missionary to the Indians.