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First page of the Topeka Constitution, 1855

First page of the Topeka Constitution, 1855

One of the major provisions of the Kansas-Nebraska Act was to allow residents of the territories to decide whether the new states would be free or would allow slavery. As a result, competing state constitutions were proposed in Kansas—the anti-slavery Topeka constitution in 1855, the proslavery Le Compton constitution in1857 and the anti-slavery Leavenworth constitution 1858. However, fraud and other voting irregularities mired the elections and Congress rejected all three constitutions.

RG 46, Records of the U.S. Senate

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