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Territorial military records

The Kansas Historical Society holds a wealth of information about military engagements and those who participated in them. The society’s library, manuscripts, and State Archives holdings contain documents and publications that describe Kansas soldiers and Kansas conflicts.

This finding aid lists manuscript materials regarding the participants in the border wars that are useful for genealogical research. Some manuscript material has been microfilmed. Most microfilm circulates through interlibrary loan, however, original documents do not. Please refer to the correspondence policy for information on how to request copies of original documents.

Abbott, James Burnett (1818-1897). Papers. 1815-1896. 154 items and 4 vols on 3 microfilm reels. Microfilm of originals in collection. Includes memoranda books and morning reports regarding free-state (anti-slavery) militia and activities, 1855-1857; staff rolls of officers and men of the 1st regiment, Kansas militia, on duty at Sugar Mound, Kansas, December 19-21, 1857; "Memorandums [sic] of Soldiers' Statements," 1880-90, containing copies of letters and memoranda concerning soldiers' pensions; and copies of letters dealing primarily with pension matters, 1890-92. Collection register at beginning of microfilm. [Microfilm MS 1258-1260]

Blackman, William I.R., 1824-1882. Papers. 1855-1878. 3 items. Includea rolls of the Kansas volunteers for service in the "Wakarusa war" of November-December 1855, and a muster roll of the Scott Guards [1861?], apparently a Douglas County, Kansas, organization. No finding aids. [Manuscripts Coll. Blackman: Port]

Blood, James, 1819-1891. Papers. 1855-1857. 2 boxes and 1 oversize folder. Includes a muster roll, December 12, 1855, of Captain James Blood's Cavalry, Co. S, 6th Kansas Volunteer regiment, called to defend Lawrence, Kansas. No finding aids. [Manuscripts Coll. Blood/Oversize]

Fort Larned, Kansas. Records. 1858-1875. 1 reel of microfilm. Included are library records and rosters of non-commissioned officers and guards. No finding aids. [Microfilm MS 290]

Forts. Collection 1853-1902.. ca. 400 items. Includes muster and payrolls of detachments of the U.S. Army Hospital corps at Fort Riley, Kansas, 1853-1902, and record of internments in [Fort Dodge, Kansas] post cemetery, 1865-1879. No finding aids. [Manuscripts Hist. Forts]

Legislature. Collection. 1861-1939. 1 ft. Includes organization papers, January 1867, of the Old Free-State Guards, an association begun by members of the 1867 Legislature. No finding aids. [Manuscripts Hist. Legislature, 1867]

In addition, the records of the Kansas Adjutant General’s Office, record group 34, in the State Archives holdings of the Kansas Historical Society may contain helpful information. A finding aid to these records is available in the Research Room.

The society also maintains several historic sites related to territorial Kansas and the Civil War.