The Topeka Network
Dr. William O. Wagnon writes that Topeka had been founded by a group of nine settlers from the east on December 5, 1854. Their antislavery orientation attracted settlers of like mind. In November, 1855, 71 of its male inhabitants, as the local militia, went to aid Lawrence, then under siege by Missourians eager to drive antislavery residents from the territory. This militia became known as “the Topeka boys,” for their ardent opposition to proslavery control of the territory. Militia from antislavery communities throughout the territory had joined in protecting Lawrence. From that assemblage, individual associations developed into the Underground Railroad. To see the entire story click on Topeka Boys.