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Topeka in Shawnee County, Kansas — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)
 

Constitution Hall -Topeka

1855 -

 
 
Constitution Hall -Topeka Marker image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., April 29, 2011
1. Constitution Hall -Topeka Marker
Inscription.
Free State Capitol of Kansas Territory, 1855-1861
Used as the Kansas Capitol, 1864-1869


Constitution Hall is Topeka's oldest building. In October 1855, Free Staters held Topeka's first convention here, to organize a free state government and ratify the Topeka Constitution. This was the first of the four constitutions leading to Kansas statehood.

The Topeka Constitution was far reaching for its time, proclaiming There shall be no slavery in this state. The Topeka Legislature stood against the proslavery Territorial "bogus" government in Lecompton, 17 miles northeast of Topeka. Proslavery forces terrorized the Free State citizens and cut off their supplies from Kansas City.

Constitution Hall-Topeka played a nationally significant role in Bleeding Kansas.

The Mural
Painted in the summer of 2006 by community volunteers, this commemorates the 150th anniversary of the Dispersion of the Free State legislature by Col. Edwin V. Summer and federal troops, on the Fourth of July in 1856. It depicts the front of Constitution Hall from the 1856 lithograph, shown above. Colonel Summer, standing third from the left, is based on a photograph of him at about that time.

The Constitution Hall Restoration Project
The building was purchased in 1998 by Friends
Constitution Hall -Topeka Lithograph on Marker image. Click for full size.
By Unknown, 1856
2. Constitution Hall -Topeka Lithograph on Marker
of the Free State Capitol, an all-volunteer, not-for-profit organization, with funds appropriated by the Kansas Legislature.

Preliminary architectural analysis was been [sic] performed by the Historic Resources Committee, Kansas Chapter, American Institute Of Architects. White House historian and Kansas Capitol restoration consultant William Seale, PhD, under a National Park Service grant award, prepared historical study and restoration recommendations.

Building stabilization has been funded by generous Topekans and Kansans.

In 2001, the National Park Service officially recognized the building by permanent listing in the National Underground Network to Freedom Program.

The National Park Service, the City of Topeka, the Kansas Historic Preservation Office, and Downtown Topeka, Inc. have awarded preservation grants.

The City of Topeka officially recognized Constitution Hall-Topeka as a Topeka Landmark in 2006.

 
Erected 2006 by Friends of the Free State Capitol.
 
Location. 39° 3.213′ N, 95° 40.364′ W. Marker is in Topeka, Kansas, in Shawnee County. Marker is on Kansas Avenue near SW 5th Street, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 427-429 South Kansas Avenue, Topeka KS 66604, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers.
Constitution Hall -Topeka Mural image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., April 29, 2011
3. Constitution Hall -Topeka Mural
At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Site of the First State Capitol (approx. 0.2 miles away); Mariachi Divina! (approx. 0.3 miles away); St. John AME Church (approx. 0.4 miles away); Replica of the Statue of Liberty (approx. 0.4 miles away); Charles Curtis (approx. half a mile away); Governor Landon's Acceptance (approx. half a mile away); Kansas Veterans' Walk (approx. half a mile away); The Capitol Building (approx. half a mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Topeka.
 
Also see . . .
1. Topeka Constitution of 1855. (Submitted on September 18, 2011, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
2. Topeka Constitution Bibliography. (Submitted on September 18, 2011, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
 
Categories. Abolition & Underground RRCivil RightsPoliticsSettlements & Settlers
 
Constitution Hall -Topeka Mural image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., April 29, 2011
4. Constitution Hall -Topeka Mural
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on September 18, 2011, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 728 times since then and 28 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on September 18, 2011, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.
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