James Henry Lane

James Henry Lane

Lawrenceburg, Dearborn County, Indiana, USA
Death 11 Jul 1866 (aged 52)
Fort Leavenworth, Leavenworth County, Kansas, USA
Burial Lawrence, Douglas County, Kansas, USA
Memorial ID 10284 · View Source
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US Congressman, US Senator, Civil War Union Brigadier General. Born in Lawrenceburg, Indiana, his father was Indiana Congressman Amos Lane. After received a common school education and studying law in his father's office, he was admitted to the Indiana State Bar in 1840. When the Mexican War began he helped raise the 5th Indiana Volunteer Infantry regiment, and served as it's Colonel and commander. After serving as Lieutenant Governor of Indiana from 1849 to 1853, he was elected as a Democrat to represent Indiana's 4th Congressional District in the United States House of Representatives, serving from 1853 to 1855. A few months after the end of his Congressional term he emigrated to the Kansas Territory, and became in the pro-and anti-slavery section conflicts there that became known as "Bleeding Kansas". In 1856 he was elected to the United States Senate under the Topeka Constitution, the validity of which Congress refused to recognize. Indicted for treason, he left Kansas for a while returning in August 1856. After Kansas was admitted to the Union in 1861 James Henry Lane was elected as a Republican Senator to the United States Senate, and left for Washington, DC. Arriving in the capital, he immediately raised a company of infantry to guard President Abraham Lincoln. He was appointed by the President as a Brigadier General of US Volunteers, a commission that was disputed because of the legality whether a sitting Senator can hold and serve at the rank. He was heavily involved in raising of Union troops of Kansas "Jayhawkers", and commanded a brigade of Kansas Volunteers known as "Lane's Brigade". The troops he raised would fight at the September 1861 Battle of Dry Woods Creek in Missouri, and the September 23, 1861 sacking of Osceola, Missouri, of which he was heavily criticized. In late 1862 he recruited the all-African American 1st Kansas Volunteer Infantry (Colored) regiment, who when skirmishing with Confederates in October 1862 became the first African-American Union soldiers to see combat. He was the main target of what became known as "Quantrill's Raid" and "The Lawrence Massacre" on August 21, 1861 when Confederate partisan leader William Quantrill attacked pro-Union Lawrence, Kansas, killing an estimated 200 people. Senator Lane escaped the massacre spending the night hiding in a cornfield. In 1864 he served as a aide-de-camp to Major General Samuel R. Curtis, who commanded the Union's Army of the Border, and was present at the October 24, 1864 Battle of Westport, Missouri, which was a victory for Union forces and permanently secured Missouri for the Union. After the war James H. Lane sided with President Andrew Johnson against the Radical Republicans, making powerful enemies and was soon accused of being involved in fraudulent Indian contracts. Severely depressed while defending himself and in fragile mental health, he shot himself in the head on July 1, 1866, lingering for 10 days before succumbing.

Bio by: JustinM

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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Added: 3 Jul 2000
  • Find a Grave Memorial 10284
  • Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for James Henry Lane (22 Jun 1814–11 Jul 1866), Find a Grave Memorial no. 10284, citing Oak Hill Cemetery, Lawrence, Douglas County, Kansas, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .