Destruction of Fort Saunders

Friday, August 15, 1856

Camp Saunders, Douglas County, Kansas. Courtesy of the Kansas Historical Society.

Fort Saunders, one of three proslavery "forts" in Douglas County, Kansas (12 miles southwest of Lawrence, on Washington Creek), falls under attack from Free-Staters, led by James H. Lane and angered at the Sacking of Lawrence and the murder of Major S. D. Hoyt, who had traveled to Fort Saunders to request an end to hostilities. The proslavery men at Fort Saunders (which is really no more than a sturdy log cabin), surrender before the fighting has a chance to begin. The building is burned to the ground, and the Free-Staters turn their attention to Fort Titus.

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