The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 101, July 1997 - April, 1998

Book Reviews

historical facts about locations, events, and individuals. This makes for dull read-
ing. Also, the inclusion of long family epistles in the narrative makes for hard
reading. The book would have been better served had Dixson only quoted the
relevant parts of the letters to support his narrative and left the full transcrip-
tions for an appendix.
Nevertheless, the book will be a worthy addition to the library of any individual
interested in the life ofJohn Wesley Hardin or the history of Navarro County.
Austin THOMAS RICKS LINDLEY
For God & Mammon: Evangelicals and Entrepreneurs, Masters and Slaves in Territorial
Kansas, z854-z860. By Gunja SenGupta. (Athens: University of Georgia
Press, 1996. Pp. xiii+2 19. List of tables, acknowledgments, maps, introduc-
tion, notes, index. ISBN o-8203-1779-9. $35.00, cloth.)
In the popular imagination, Kansas of the late 1850s stands at the focal point
of the conflict between North and South, and between antislavery and proslavery
forces. "Bleeding Kansas" in this context foreshadowed the collapse of the union
and the coming of the Civil War. Gunja SenGupta has challenged this view of
Kansas territorial history as simplistic and one-dimensional. Using census data,
correspondence, and the records of emigration and settlement societies to detail
the economic and social characteristics, as well as the ideology, of settlers and
their communities, she argues that conflict over slavery in Kansas was accompa-
nied by a pragmatic economic cooperation, and that if "the Kansas conflict pre-
saged the Civil War," the economic cooperation between northerners and south-
erners in Kansas "provides a clue to the relatively quick sectional reunion follow-
ing Reconstruction" (p. 6).
SenGupta does not underestimate the power of the slavery issue in Kansas in
the 185os. However, as she details the ideology of the various antislavery factions
that sent emigrants to freedom's southern line, she emphasizes divisions within
the ideology as well as the fact that much of the antislavery argument was
couched in economic terms. Likewise, she points out that the southern emi-
grants who defended slavery and southern concepts of individuality were socially
and ideologically diverse and actually included relatively few who had a direct
economic stake in the survival of slavery. These issues, coupled with the facts
that demographic data demonstrated that there were no rigid lines separating
the areas settled by immigrants from slave states and free states, that there were
actually relatively few settlers sent to Kansas by antislavery societies, and that
southern immigrants brought relatively few slaves to Kansas, provide the founda-
tion for SenGupta's explanation of how economic cooperation overshadowed
sectional hostility in territorial Kansas.
SenGupta's major contribution is her use of demographic data to analyze life
in territorial Kansas. Her study of voting records in the December 1855 election
on black exclusion suggests that free-soilers differed little from their proslavery
neighbors in their attitudes toward blacks, while her examination of occupation-
al backgrounds indicates that most Kansas immigrants, whether originating in

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 101, July 1997 - April, 1998. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117155/. Accessed July 29, 2014.