Thomas L. Kane papers on the Mormons

Thomas L. Kane papers on the Mormons

Dates: 1846-1884

Contains material dating from Kane's initial meeting with the Mormons in 1846 through his relationships with various Mormons throughout his lifetime. Includes key materials relating to the call of the Mormon Battalion in 1846, the settlement of the Mormons on Indian lands in Nebraska during the winter of 1846-47, the establishment of Winter Quarters and Kanesville, their westward movement, Kane's public defense of the Mormons, the Utah War period, and later work with individuals like George Q. Cannon.

  • Extent: 5 boxes
  • Creator: Kane (Family : Kane, Thomas L. (Thomas Leiper), 1822-1883)
  • Call Number: Vault MSS 792 Series 3
  • Repository: L. Tom Perry Special Collections; 19th Century Western & Mormon Manuscripts; 1130 Harold B. Lee Library; Brigham Young University; Provo, Utah 84602;
  • Access Restrictions: Open for public research.
Languages and Scripts
Arranged in fourteen subseries: 1. Correspondence from early Mormon contacts. 2. Correspondence regarding Winter Quarters. 3. Note and orders for Mormon Battalion. 4. Legislative drafts on Utah statehood. 5. Address to the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. 6. Papers on Utah Expedition. 7. Brigham Young correspondence and other material. 8. Correspondence with George Q. Cannon. 9. Correspondence with other Mormons. 10. Letters and notes from visit to Utah, 1872-1873. 11. Account of visit to Utah, 1877. 12. Correspondence and other material on Mormon business ventures. 13. Manuscripts, correspondence, and other material on Mormons. 14. Newpaper clippings on Mormons.
Conditions of Use
It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances. Permission to publish material from Kane family papers must be obtained from the Supervisor of Reference Services and/or the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Coordinating Committee.
Publications derived from manuscripts in the collection include Elizabeth W. Kane, Twelve Mormon Homes (1874); A Gentile Account of Life in Utah's Dixie, 1872-73: Elizabeth Kane's St. George Journal (1995); and John K. Kane Autobiography (privately published, 1949).
Preferred Citation
Thomas L. Kane papers on the Mormons; Vault MSS 792; Kane family papers; L. Tom Perry Special Collections; 19th Century Western & Mormon Manuscripts; 1130 Harold B. Lee Library; Brigham Young University; Provo, Utah 84602;
Other Finding Aids
File-level inventory available online.
Related Material
See also the Elizabeth Wood Kane papers (Vault MSS 792 Series 6) for materials she produced as her husband's secretary, which help document his activities.
Subject Terms
Mormons; Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Genre / Form
Clippings (Books, newspapers, etc.); Letters
Finding Aid ID Number
Finding Aid Title
Kane family papers
Finding Aid Author
Leslie Evens
Finding Aid Creator
This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on 2018-10-29 18:53:05 -0600.
Finding Aid Language
Biographical Info:

Biographical History

Thomas L. Kane (1822-1883) was a lawyer, abolitionist, Civil War soldier, frontiersman, and Mormon advocate.

Thomas Leiper Kane was born January 27, 1822 in Philadelphia to Judge John Kintzing Kane and Jane Duval Leiper. He attained the bar in 1846, after studying law with his father. He served as clerk in his father's court until 1850, at which point he resigned due to a moral conflict with the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850. He went on to become an active member of the Underground Railroad. Kane became interested in the Mormon migration to the West, and was crucial in securing government aid for the movement. His friendship with Brigham Young is credited with the non-violent resolution of the Utah War. At the advent of the Civil War Kane organized a volunteer Union Army regiment known as the "Bucktails" and served as lieutenant-colonel of that outfit. He later was brevetted the rank of major-general for his service at Gettysburg. After his military service he retired to found the town of Kane, Pennsylvania. In 1853 Kane married Elizabeth Dennistoun Wood, and together they had four children: Harriet Amelia Kane (1854-1896); Elisha Kent Kane (1856-1935); Evan O'Neill Kane (1861-1932); and Thomas Leiper Kane, Jr. (1863-1929). Kane died of pneumonia in Philadelphia on December 26, 1883.

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Ryan Lee
Curator - 19th Century Western & Mormon Manuscripts