Tag Archives: James Lane

Maybe it’s time to let this one go

Historical memory combined with small-town politics.  It’s like a perfect storm of petty histrionics!

The tiny Missouri town of Osceola has a simple request.

It wants the University of Kansas to drop its mascot, the Jayhawk.

Oh, and another thing: Get rid of that big K.

“No citizen of the City of Osceola or the alumni of the University of Missouri shall ever capitalize the ‘k’ in ‘kansas’ or ‘kU,’ as neither is a proper name or a proper place,” Osceola’s Board of Aldermen ordered in a resolution passed last week. The resolution marked the upcoming 150th anniversary of a Civil War raid in which an abolitionist Kansas militia — “a group of domestic terrorist(s) referred to as ‘the jayhawkers’” — burned down four of the city’s five buildings and executed several Osceola residents.

The “Sack of Osceola” was the work of anti-slavery Kansans commanded by Senator James Lane who blew into town on September 23, 1861 and proceeded to loot private property, rob the bank, and set the buildings on fire, leaving nine dead citizens in their wake and taking a couple hundred slaves with them. 

I can see how that sort of thing would leave a bad taste in one’s mouth, but to be fair, the Missourians gave as good as they got

Besides, we’re talking about an anthropomorphic bird.  Sheesh.


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Filed under Civil War, History and Memory