The Artifact Gallery was made possible by a generous gift from the William T. Kemper Foundation – Commerce Bank, Trustee.
In the years following the passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Act in 1854, the area along the border of Kansas and Missouri became a battleground over the slavery controversy. By the principle of popular sovereignty, the bill allowed settlers to decide if slavery would enter into the newly established territories. Pro-slavery and anti-slavery forces flooded into Kansas to determine its destiny, resulting in a violent era that came to be known as "Bleeding Kansas." This broadside is a call to join John W. Reid's band to meet up with other pro-slavery allies to attack Lawrence, Kansas, as retribution for abolitionist Jim Lane's siege days earlier of Lecompton, the pro-slavery seat of government. The call culminated in a gathering of 2,700 men under the leadership of Reid, David Rice Atchison, and other Missouri pro-slavery leaders. The force marched toward Lawrence set to destroy the abolitionist settlement, but turned back when confronted by Kansas Governor John W. Geary, who assured them that Lane and his men were not in Lawrence.