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Encyclopedia > Kansas Constitution

The Kansas Constitution was originally known as the Wyandotte Constitution to distinguish it from three proposed constitutions that preceded it. The Wyandotte Constitution was drawn up at Wyandotte (now part of Kansas City) in July 1859, and was the fourth constitution voted on by the people of Kansas Territory, as the battle between proslavery and antislavery forces during the Bleeding Kansas era spread to the debate over the terms of the new state's charter. Kansas City is the third largest city in the U.S. state of Kansas and the county seat of Wyandotte County; it is part of the Unified Government [1] which also includes the cities of Bonner Springs and Edwardsville. ... 1859 (MDCCCLIX) is a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Monday of the Julian calendar). ... Kansas Territory was a historic, organized territory of the United States that existed from May 30, 1854 to January 29, 1861, when Kansas became the 34th U.S. state. ... Division of the states during the Civil War:  Union states  Union territories  Border states  Bleeding Kansas  The Confederacy  Confederate territories (not always held) Bleeding Kansas, sometimes referred to in the history of Kansas as Bloody Kansas or the Border War, was a sequence of violent events involving Free-Staters (anti...

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Adoption

The Wyandotte Constitution was approved in a referendum by a vote of 10,421 to 5,530 on October 4, 1859. In April, 1860, the United States House of Representatives voted 134 to 73 to admit Kansas under the Wyandotte Constitution; however, there was resistance in the United States Senate. As slave states seceded from the Union, their senators left their seats and on January 21, 1861, the Senate passed the Kansas bill. October 4 is the 277th day of the year (278th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar. ... 1859 (MDCCCLIX) is a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Monday of the Julian calendar). ... Secession is the act of withdrawing from an organization, union, or political entity. ... January 21 is the 21st day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ...


The admission of Kansas as a free state became effective January 29, 1861. January 29 is the 29th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ...

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Terms

The constitution settled the terms of Kansas' admission to the United States, particularly establishing that it would be a free state rather than a slave state. The constitution represented a pragmatic compromise over hotly-contested issues: it rejected slavery and affirmed property rights for women and their right to participate in school elections, but also denied universal suffrage for women, blacks, and Indians. The previous proposed state constitutions were the Topeka Constitution of 1855, the Lecompton Constitution of 1857 and the Leavenworth Constitution of 1858. This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... For the term free state as it arises in United States history, see: Free state. ... A slave state is a U.S. State that had legal slavery (overwhelmingly the enslavement of African-Americans, although historically also the enslavement of Native Americans, and Whites through indentured servitude) in the period leading up to the American Civil War and the Emancipation Proclamation. ... The Topeka Convention, held in 1855, was the first attempt to establish a constitution for Kansas Territory. ... The Lecompton Constitution was one of four proposed Kansas state constitutions. ... The Leavenworth Constitution was one of four proposed Kansas state constitutions. ...


Amended many times (including a universal suffrage amendment in 1912), the Wyandotte constitution is still the constitution of Kansas. Universal suffrage (also general suffrage or common suffrage) consists of the extension of suffrage to all adults, without distinction as to race, sex, belief, or social status. ...

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