EDMUND G. ROSS

EDMUND G. ROSS, one of the leaders in favor of a free Kansas, a pioneer editor of Topeka, afterward United States senator to succeed Gen. James H. Lane. He was born at Ashland, Ohio, December 7, 1826; mastered the printer's trade, spent several years as a journeyman, and was engaged in newspaper work at Milwaukee, Wisconsin, when Lawrence was sacked in 1856. He started overland in charge of a party of free-state men, who upon their arrival at Topeka, took the field with the anti-slavery forces. After the invaders had been driven out, Mr. Ross entered into partnership with his brother in the publication of the Kansas Tribune. He took an active interest in politics, was a member of the Wyandotte Constitutional Convention in 1859, and at its close began the publication of the Kansas State Record at Topeka, which became a very influential republican organ. In 1860 his paper aided in calling a territorial convention to plan a scheme for securing a practical railroad system for the anticipated State of Kansas. He assisted in raising the Eleventh Kansas Infantry in 1862, and at the organization of the regiment was elected captain of a company. Subsequently Governor Carney appointed him major of the regiment, when it was changed from infantry to cavalry, and he was present with his command in all the battles in which it was engaged. In 1865 Governor Crawford appointed him aide-de-camp with the rank of lieutenant colonel. At the close of the war he became editor of the Kansas Tribune at Lawrence, and on July 25, 1866, Governor Crawford appointed him United States senator to succeed James H. Lane, deceased. During the session he incurred widespread enmity by casting the deciding vote against the impeachment of President Andrew Johnson. In 1872 he was one of the liberal republican leaders of Kansas who supported Horace Greeley as against Grant. On his retirement from the United States Senate, he began to publish a paper at Coffeyville, but a cyclone destroyed his office and he became associated with the Spirit of Kansas and the Standard of Lawrence. In 1882 he went to New Mexico and for a time edited a paper at Albuquerque. He was appointed governor of the territory by President Cleveland in 1885, which position he held for four years. Mr. Ross continued to live in Albuquerque until his death on May 9, 1907.


A Standard History of Kansas and Kansans, written and compiled by William E. Connelley, Secretary of the Kansas State Historical Society, Topeka. Chicago: Lewis Publishing Company, copyright 1918; transcribed October, 1997.
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