My interest in my genealogy has lead me to a general interest in the history of Missouri and the Kansas City area. I am more interested in the early history of the area as opposed to modern history and am particularly interested in the effect Lewis and Clark had on the area, how Fort Osage was founded, the Mormon struggle in western Missouri and slavery in Missouri and Jackson County. Preparing these articles may take some time, so please check back!
I have read a book entitled A History of Missouri, Volume II, 1820 to 1860 by Perry McCandless (McCandless) and ran across a couple of pieces of information that I find interesting.
First, McCandless (McCandless, p. 57) notes that the state supreme court declared Indian slavery illegal in 1834. As for black slavery, there was no specific law allowing it, but all blacks were assumed to be slaves. Then in 1857, the state supreme court apparently ruled that black slavery had existed under Spanish and French authority and was continued in the territory under the United States and therefore it was not necessary for there to be any legislation authorizing it. While no race or ethnic group deserves slavery more than another, both Indians and blacks were looked on as inferior by the white men of the time and why this dual standard existed deserves further research. I will try to get these two decisions and report on them further.
Missouri did enact a slave code which limited the rights of slaves. Included in the restrictions were the right to assemble and the right to marry. And then in 1847, it became illegal to teach a slave to read or write (McCandless, p. 58). This situation raises the question for me: "How can you refuse to educate a person and then complain that they are ignorant?"