3. Civil War Period: The Alversons & Babbs

3. Civil War Period: The Alversons & Babbs

nov-dec 1855 The Wakarusa War was a skirmish that took place in Kansas Territory during November and December 1855 as part of the "Bleeding Kansas" violence between Free-Staters and pro-slavery militias. It centered on Lawrence, Kansas, and the Wakarusa River Valley

Still in Lawrence April 26 1856

sacking of Lawrence May 21 1856

May 23-26 The Pottawatomie massacre occurred from May 23rd and continued until May 26th, 1856, with the killings occurring on the night of the 24th and morning of the 25th. In reaction to the sacking of Lawrence, Kansas, by pro-slavery forces on May 21, and the severe attack on May 22 on Massachusetts Senator Charles Sumner for speaking out against slavery in Kansas ("The Crime Against Kansas"), John Brown and a band of abolitionist settlers—some of them members of the Pottawatomie Rifles—made a violent reply. Just north of Pottawatomie Creek, in Franklin County, Kansas, they killed five pro-slavery settlers, in front of their families. This soon became the most famous of the many violent episodes of the "Bleeding Kansas" period, during which a state-level civil war in Kansas Territory was a Tragic Prelude to the American Civil War which soon followed. "Bleeding Kansas" involved conflicts between pro- and anti-slavery settlers over whether Kansas Territory would enter the Union as a slave state or a free state. It is also John Brown's most questionable act, both to his friends and his enemies. In the words of abolitionist Frederick Douglass , it was "a terrible remedy for a terrible malady."[2]:371

Arrive 16 sep 1854 Ira Ackley

November 29, 1854, Border Ruffians elected a pro-slavery territorial representative to Congress. On March 30,1855, the Ruffians elected a pro-slavery legislature.

Interpretation of Civil War Era lessons

I was shocked to learn Dredd Scott - revoked citizenship in theory of every free Black Person. I learned of the Free Blacks from the story of London Atus and Atusville . The constitution did not deny citizenship to Blacks. March 1847

1850 - court upholds dredd scott freedom on appeal

May 30 1854 Kansas Nebraska Act - potentially introducing slavery to West - sparks Republican Party

August 1 1854 - arrival of first emmigrant aid settlers to Kansas

16 sep 1854 Ira Ackley Arrives Lawrence

October 1854 Anson Arrives in Lawrence as 1 of original 107 founders of Lawrence w Emmigrant Aid. Very tough first winter

Nativist Party - Anti Catholic WASP 40 members

Democratic Party

Republican Party swept into majority within five months of forming party

1855 spring 3709 eligible voters in Kansas.

Ira Ackley Private in Kansas Free State Militia Company 1855

November 29, 1854, Border Ruffians elected a pro-slavery territorial representative to Congress. On March 30,1855, the Ruffians elected a pro-slavery legislature.

1856-1857 - 250 killed in night time raiding in Kansas Border War

April 26 1856 - Ira Ackley testifies to election fraud in Lawrence

Oct 1856 - John Brown returns to New England

Arrived 1856 John Brown

Tabor Iowa - J Brown

Aug 17 1858 death of Emery Alverson's wife Mary Ann Strong in Burlingame, Kansas

November 1862 Horatio Woodruff arrives SF with a relative.

Dec 11, 1862 – Dec 15, 1862 Battle of Fredricksburg, Anson Alverson

July 1, 1863 Gettysburg

August 21 1863 - Quantrill's Raid - Massacre

December 24, 1863 Emery Johnson marries Widow Jane Bewley (Murdured minister's widow) near Lawrence Kansas,

Anson E Alverson


Anson E. ALVERSON, son of Emory and Mary A. (STRONG) ALVERSON, was born in Gerry, N. Y., Sept. 17, 1832. His grandfather, James R. ALVERSON, a soldier in the War of 1812 and a native of Connecticut, came to Gerry from Vermont at a very early day. He held town offices and raised a large family. Emory ALVERSON, born in Brattleboro, Vt., in 1806, married Mary Ann, daughter of Gilbert STRONG, about 1830. In 1836 he removed to Gowanda and purchased a manufactory for making pails and tubs. In 1850 he exchanged this for the old Point Peter farm. In 1856 he joined his son Anson E. in Lawrence, Kan., and died in Clay county, Kan., in 1881. Mrs. ALVERSON died in 1857. Anson E. ALVERSON finished his education in the academy at Ellington, N. Y. April 26, 1852, he married Melissa, daughter of Ira W. and Mary (SEABROOK) ACKLEY, and settled on the homestead, when he went to Lawrence, Kan., and joined the Emigrant Aid Society from Massachusetts, being one of the 107 founders of that settlement. In the summer of 1859 he and his father made an overland trip to Denver, Col., with four ox-teams. Mr. ALVERSON is a natural mechanic and assisted his father-in-law as a millwright. In 1860 he returned to this county and settled in Cattaraugus village. In July, 1861, he enlisted in Co. A, 64th N. Y. Vols., and was discharged Feb. 23, 1863, for disability. He served as private, corporal, and sergeant. In Oct., 1863, he went to the oil regions of Rouseville, PA., where he was a laborer, a well-driller, and an oil producer until 1875. He then removed to Cattaraugus. In 1888 he visited Virginia, Chicago, Duluth, and Washington territory, where he remained four years. He is now a farmer just outside the corporation of Gowanda. Mr. ALVERSON served as highway commissioner of New Albion in 1883 and built the first iron bridge in that town. Children: Rollin A., born in 1853, died in Lawrence in Aug., 1855; Mary U., born in 1856, married Thomas BABB, of Cattaraugus, and resides in Chicago; Corlin E., born in 1860; George S., born in 1864; Nathan A., born in Dec., 1869; and Chanley W., born in 1875.


Bio from:

Historical Gazetteer and Biographical Memorial of Cattaraugus Co. NY, ed by William Adams, pub 1893

History of the Town of Persia – Chapter XLII (42)

Page 987

Ira Wilbur Ackley


Ira W. ACKLEY, born in Lancaster, N. Y., in 1806, married Mary SEABROOK, a descendant of the English family who settled SEABROOK Island, South Carolina. He early settled in Hidi, and being a millwright assisted Ahaz ALLEN in building the first saw-mill there. Soon after he purchased 100 acres of woodland on lot 57 where his son John S. now lives. The place he chose for his home was near a large spring, which was evidently a resort of the Indians. The present proprietor has found numerous arrowheads, stone axes, and stone implements for skinning game, a stone rasp, and other curiosities. Mr. ACKLEY was elected to several town offices. He was deputized by Sheriff WHITE to call out the militia and went with them to the Dutch Hill war. He joined the Emigrant Aid Society of Massachusetts at the time of border ruffian troubles in Kansas and was one of the original founders of the city of Lawrence, and was also the millwright in building the first mill in that city. He died where his daughter, Mrs. ALVERSON, now lives in 1888. Mrs. ACKLEY died about 1875. Children: Orlando A.; Melissa E. (Mrs. ALVERSON); John Seabrook, who married Alzina, daughter of William CRANDALL, of Persia; Thomas B. (deceased); and Mary, widow of Luther N. WELLS.

Kansas Territory

DEC 1858 - John Brown's raids - along potawamie -

Oct 1859 Harpers Ferry Raid December 2, 1859 John Brown Executed 1881 speech on John Brown by Frederick Douglass http://www.wvculture.org/history/jbexhibit/bbspr05-0032.html

Summer 1859 - Anson and Emery take 4 ox team to denver - Anson returns to NY permanently

November 6, 1860 Abraham Lincoln of the Republican Party elected, triggering secession of 11 states DEC-APR

April 12, 1861 first battle of Fort Sumter - confederate victoru

Jul 1861 - Battle of Bull Run

31 May - 1 June 1862 Battle of Fair Oaks - Anson

September 17 1862 - First union victory Antietam


Burial Place In Gerry Of Strongs, Shepardsons and Alversons


Several came via Chenango County ?

History Of Gerry Mentioning The Alversons Ackleys and Strongs


Emery Alverson excerpt from Widow Bewley article:

Jane (Winton) Bewley married (2) at Baldwin, Douglas County Kansas in 1863, Emery Alverson, son of James Reynolds and Damaris Billings (Shepardson) Alverson. He was born at Brattleboro, Windham County Vermont August 27, 1806 and died at Clay Center, Clay County Kansas July 9, 1881. Jane died at Cordell, Washita County Oklahoma August 29, 1894 and is buried in the Pleasant View Cemetery, Cordell.

In 1880 they were living with her son, William Winton Bewley, at Clay Center.

Bleeding Kansas

The Republican Party was born out of opposition to Kansas Nebraska