Interracial Marriage and Divorce in Kansas and the Question of Instability of Mixed Marriages

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2019-04-08 17:50Z by Steven

Interracial Marriage and Divorce in Kansas and the Question of Instability of Mixed Marriages

Journal of Comparative Family Studies
Volume 2, Number 1 (SPRING 1971)
pages 107-120

Thomas P. Monahan, Professor of Sociology
Villanova University, Villanova, Pennsylvania

Some critical comments on studies of interracial marriage are offered, and caution is urged in using information purporting to disclose the nature of the interracial marriage phenomenon, including United States Census and Vital Statistics data. The legal history of racial intermarriage in Kansas is outlined, and its statistical data upon these events are briefly evaluated. Beginning with the year 1947, mixed race marriage and divorce statistics for White, Mexican, Negro, Indian, Chinese, Japanese, and Other races in Kansas are presented. The figures show a rather steady rise in the proportion of mixed marriages, but Negroes appear to be the least intermarried of the minority groups and account for less than one-half of mixed marriages. In the late 1960′ s about 15 per cent of all the nonwhite marriages (7 per cent for Negroes separately) were mixed. Important differences appear for the several other races. In Kansas, as in Iowa, mixed Negro marriages probably have been more stable than homogamous Negro marriages. Again, whether or not a certain type of mixed race marriage will endure would seem to depend upon the particular races intermarrying, the social circumstances surrounding them at the time, and the nature of the marital choice itself.


Although broadly theoretical and interpretive articles have been written upon interracial, interethnic, and intercaste marriages (Davis, 1941;; Merton, 1941; van den Berghe, 1960), the statistical basis for such studies is rather fragmentary and selective material (Monahan, 1970a, 1970b). On the whole, even though individual countries have at times assembled such data, factual information is sparse, and none appears in the 1968 Demographic Yearbook of the United Nations. A cross-cultural comparison of the demographic concomitants of this phenomenon requires sets of carefully drawn data, analyzed first within their separate cultural contexts. As part of a larger study of the past and present situation in the United States, information about interracial marriage and divorce in the mid-American state of Kansas should add a segment to our understanding of the American pattern.

In their recent book on Marriage and Divorce (1970:129), Carter and Glick propose that the number of interracial marriages, while “extremely small,” has shown an upward trend and in the coming decades will register substantial increases. Their findings are also interpreted to support the theory that mixed marriages are relatively unstable as compared to homogamous ones (pp. 124-125). Unfortunately these hypotheses are based on 1960 Census data, about w’hich there are serious doubts as to accuracy and significance, acknowledged in part by the authors (Carter and Glick, 1970:424-426; Monahan 1970a:462). It would seem that answers to these questions on the trend and instability of interracial marriages in the United States should be derived from statistics on marriage and divorce occurrences, rather than from secondary Census information showing marital status of the population.

Reliance upon Census data is to some extent due to the lack of national statistics on marriage and divorce in depth and in detail. Also, because they are based upon a very small sample of state records, the marriage data of the National Center for Health Statistics are not very meaningful as to interracial marriage trends, as yet; and, with respect to interracial divorce, only a few states have records by race for a sufficient number of years. Indeed, race-or-color has been poorly defended as a statistical item and has been obliterated from the marriage records in some major population areas (California, Maryland, Michigan, and New York) by civil rights protagonists, thus making objective findings on interracial marriage more difficult…

Read or purchase the article here.

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Obama Returns to His Biography

Posted in Articles, Barack Obama, Biography, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2016-07-29 01:09Z by Steven

Obama Returns to His Biography

The Atlantic

Yoni Appelbaum, Senior Editor/Washington Bureau Chief

Mark Kauzlarich / Reuters

Twelve years after introducing himself to the American public as the son of an immigrant, the president recast himself as a bearer of Scotch-Irish values.

Twelve years ago, Barack Obama introduced himself to America as just a skinny kid with a funny name. He made his story into the American story—a tale of immigrant hopes, of opportunities, of success that could only come true in the United States. That speech launched him to the presidency.

In Philadelphia on Wednesday night, as he tried to anoint his successor and secure his legacy, he returned to his biography to close his appeal. But this time, he pulled out a different strand of the story. He spoke not just of his grandparents in Kansas, whose stories he has told many times before, but of their kin and communities, of their vision and values. They were, he said:

Scotch-Irish mostly, farmers, teachers, ranch hands, pharmacists, oil-rig workers. Hardy, small-town folk. Some were Democrats, but a lot of them, maybe even most of them, were Republicans—Party of Lincoln. My grandparents explained that the folks in these parts, they didn’t like show-offs. They didn’t admire braggarts or bullies. They didn’t respect mean-spiritedness, or folks who were always looking for shortcuts in life. Instead, what they valued were traits like honesty and hard work. Kindness; courtesy; humility; responsibility; helping each other out. That’s what they believed in. True things. Things that last. The things we try to teach our kids.

It’s a different kind of American story. Not the son of a Kenyan goatherd rising directly to the highest office in the land, but working families toiling for generation after generation with quiet pride, relying on each other…

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Tracing Trails of Blood on Ice: Commemorating “The Great Escape” in 1861-62 of Indians and Blacks into Kansas

Posted in Articles, History, Media Archive, Native Americans/First Nation, Slavery, United States on 2011-10-22 15:57Z by Steven

Tracing Trails of Blood on Ice: Commemorating “The Great Escape” in 1861-62 of Indians and Blacks into Kansas

Negro History Bulletin
Jaunary-December 2001

Willard B. Johnson

My heart raced and emotions surged before I consciously grasped the meaning of what I was reading in that footnote. Reading all the footnotes had become routine for me, because ages ago I learned that important information about my people and my interests would more often than not be buried there, if mentioned at all. But, here was something really startling to me—mention of Humboldt, Kansas. That tiny southeast Kansas town had been the lifelong hometown of my grandmother, Gertrude Stovall (who was 101 years old when she died in 1990), and it is where I plan to be buried, amidst five previous generations of my mother’s family. Here it was being specifically proposed as the place for an event that, had it occurred, might very significantly have impacted if not altered American history during the Civil War.

The footnote quoted a letter to President Lincoln from emissaries of Opothleyahola, a legendary leader of the traditionalist faction of the Muskogee Indians (whom the whites called “Creeks”). I had come to focus on this leader in my quest to understand the famous “Trails of Tears” over which almost all of the Indians of the southeastern states had trekked when they were forced out of their traditional homeland to “Indian Territory” (now Oklahoma).

In the letter, the Native American leader was proposing to convene all the mid-western Indian tribes in a gigantic General Council meeting, to demonstrate their continued loyalty to the Union and to secure enforcement of the treaties that his people had signed with the United States government decades before. Now they needed to meet to make good on those pledges. Of all places, Opothleyahola proposed to hold that meeting in Humboldt!

In researching the story behind this note, I was able to tie together many disjointed strands of family and folk history. The answers to questions such as why it was that so much of the black family folklore of this region spoke so vaguely of having Indian connections; how it was that some of our black families seemed to have been among the first settlers in that area of Kansas; how it was that some spoke of having come through Indian Territory; and why and how it was that after the Civil War so many black families returned to or stayed in Indian Territory became more clear.

Understanding the connections between African Americans and Native Americans is difficult and sometimes painful because these connections were quite complex and ranged from marriage, brotherhood, and adoption into families, to Indian enslavement of blacks. That many African Americans had shared the suffering of Native Americans on the Trail of Tears had come to my attention through the writings of a family friend, former Cherokee principal chief, Ms. Wilma Mankiller.  Many of the blacks who were forcibly relocated with the Indians were natural or adopted family members, or incorporated communities, but perhaps as many as four thousand of them had been slaves.  They shared all the ordeals of the removals…

…In pursuit of information about my own ancestors I was struck by several features of the 1860 federal census rolls for Arkansas, which includes the schedules for Indian Territory. Most notably, nearly all the Creek Indians were listed as “Black.” Would that designation have today’s significance?

I had read about extensive African and Creek mixing. After all, it was probably to the Creeks that blacks had escaped as early as 1526 from L. Vasquez deAyllon’s shipwrecked settlement on the Carolina coast. I had read about the ancient Creek migrations from the Southwest, where the indigenous populations were considerably darker than the Cherokee and other Iroquoian speaking peoples of the East, and may have mixed with Africans during early Spanish exploration and colonial times, as seems evident among Mexican populations, and some say even well before that! But could such mixing have been so extensive as to affect the majority of the Creeks?

I began to suspect these particular white census enumerators impulsively listed persons of dark complexion simply as “black.” This would not necessarily reflect the standard “one-drop” American practice and imply “African.” Moreover, many of the dark Creek Indians have very straight hair, so I became skeptical.

Another interesting feature of the census for Indian Territory was the special note by the enumerator that the Seminoles refused ever to allow a listing of “slaves”; it seemed to be a reaffirmation of the earlier removal-treaty negotiation experience. However, the Seminoles, whose Nation arose out of a significant social, political, and genetic integration of persons of Native American and African American background, were not all listed as “black.” Perhaps the color designations for the Creeks were valid clues to their identity after all.

The key breakthrough in this genetic conundrum came with an examination of an adjutant general’s descriptive record of the First Indian Home Guard Regiment, where color designations were quite nuanced. Seven variations were used, from “light,” to “Indian,” through “red” and “copper” to “black” and “Negro” and even “African.” The majority did not fall on the darker end of this range, but I did count about fifty persons in the last three categories…

Read the entire article here.

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Census Bureau Reports Final 2010 Census Data for the United States

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Louisiana, Media Archive, Mississippi, Texas, United States, Virginia on 2011-03-25 02:15Z by Steven

Census Bureau Reports Final 2010 Census Data for the United States

United States Census Bureau
Census 2010

The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that 2010 Census population totals and demographic characteristics have been released for communities in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. These data have provided the first look at population counts for small areas and race, Hispanic origin, voting age and housing unit data released from the 2010 Census. With the release of data for all the states, national-level counts of these characteristics are now available.

For each state, the Census Bureau will provide summaries of population totals, as well as data on race, Hispanic origin and voting age for multiple geographies within the state, such as census blocks, tracts, voting districts, cities, counties and school districts.

According to Public Law 94-171, the Census Bureau must provide redistricting data to the 50 states no later than April 1 of the year following the census. As a result, the Census Bureau is delivering the data state-by-state on a flow basis. All states will receive their data by April 1, 2011.

Highlights by Steven F. Riley

  • The United States population (for apportionment purposes)  is 308,745,538. This represents a 9.71% increase over 2000.
  • The U.S. population including Puerto Rico is 312,471,327.  This represents a 9.55% increase over 2000.
  • The number of repondents (excluding Puerto Rico) checking two or more races (TOMR) is 9,009,073 or 2.92% of the population. This represents a 31.98% increase over 2000.
  • The number of repondents (including Puerto Rico) checking TOMR is 9,026,389 or 2.89% of the population.  This represents a 29.23% increase over 2000.
  • Hawaii has the highest TOMR response rate at 23.57%, followed by Alaska (7.30%), Oklahoma (5.90%) and California (4.87%).
  • California has the highest TOMR population at 1,815,384, followed by Texas (679,001), New York (585,849), and Florida (472,577).
  • Mississppi has the lowest TOMR response rate at 1.15%, followed by West Virginia (1.46%),  Alabama (1.49%) and Maine (1.58%).
  • Vermont has the lowest TOMR population at 10,753, followed by North Dakota (11,853), Wyoming (12,361) and South Dakota (17,283).
  • South Carolina has the highest increase in the TOMR response rate at 100.09%, followed by North Carolina (99.69%), Delaware (83.03%) and Georgia (81.71%).
  • New Jersey has the lowest increase in the TOMR response rate at 12.42%, followed by California (12.92%), New Mexico (16.11%), and Massachusetts (17.81%).
  • Puerto Rico has a 22.83% decrease in the TOMR response rate and New York has a 0.73% decrease in the TOMR response race.  No other states or territories reported decreases.
2010 Census Data for “Two or More Races” for States Above
# State Total Population Two or More Races (TOMR) Percentage Total Pop. % Change from 2000 TOMR % Change from 2000
1. Louisiana 4,533,372 72,883 1.61 1.42 51.01
2. Mississippi 2,967,297 34,107 1.15 4.31 70.36
3. New Jersey 8,791,894 240,303 2.73 4.49 12.42
4. Virginia 8,001,024 233,400 2.92 13.03 63.14
5. Maryland 5,773,552 164,708 2.85 9.01 59.00
6. Arkansas 2,915,918 72,883 2.50 9.07 59.50
7. Iowa 3,046,355 53,333 1.75 4.10 67.83
8. Indiana 6,483,802 127,901 1.97 6.63 69.02
9. Vermont 625,741 10,753 1.71 2.78 46.60
10. Illinois 12,830,632 289,982 2.26 3.31 23.38
11. Oklahoma 3,751,351 221,321 5.90 8.71 41.89
12. South Dakota 814,180 17,283 2.12 7.86 70.18
13. Texas 25,145,561 679,001 2.70 20.59 31.93
14. Washington 6,724,540 312,926 4.65 14.09 46.56
15. Oregon 3,831,074 144,759 3.78 11.97 38.20
16. Colorado 5,029,196 172,456 3.43 16.92 41.14
17. Utah 2,763,885 75,518 2.73 23.77 60.01
18. Nevada 2,700,551 126,075 4.67 35.14 64.96
19. Missouri 5,988,927 124,589 2.08 7.04 51.82
20. Alabama 4,779,736 71,251 1.49 7.48 61.28
21. Hawaii 1,360,301 320,629 23.57 12.28 23.63
22. Nebraska 1,826,341 39,510 2.16 6.72 64.95
23. North Carolina 9,535,483 206,199 2.16 18.46 99.69
24. Delaware 897,934 23,854 2.66 14.59 83.03
25. Kansas 2,853,118 85,933 3.01 6.13 52.10
26. Wyoming 563,626 12,361 2.19 14.14 39.15
27. California 37,253,956 1,815,384 4.87 9.99 12.92
28. Ohio 11,536,504 237,765 2.06 1.59 50.59
29. Connecticut 3,574,097 92,676 2.59 4.95 23.82
30. Pennsylvania 12,702,379 237,835 1.87 3.43 67.23
31. Wisconsin 5,686,986 104,317 1.83 6.03 55.94
32. Arizona 6,392,017 218,300 3.42 24.59 48.98
33. Idaho 1,567,582 38,935 2.48 21.15 52.04
34. New Mexico 2,059,179 77,010 3.74 13.20 16.11
35. Montana 989,415 24,976 2.52 9.67 58.78
36. Tennessee 6,346,105 110,009 1.73 11.54 74.32
37. North Dakota 672,591 11,853 1.76 4.73 60.22
38. Minnesota 5,303,925 125,145 2.36 7.81 51.25
39. Alaska 710,231 51,875 7.30 13.29 51.92
40. Florida 18,801,310 472,577 2.51 17.63 25.58
41. Georgia 9,687,653 207,489 2.14 18.34 81.71
42. Kentucky 4,339,367 75,208 1.73 7.36 77.20
43. New Hampshire 1,316,470 21,382 1.62 6.53 61.81
44. Michigan 9,883,640 230,319 2.33 -0.55 19.70
45. Massachusetts 6,547,629 172,003 2.63 3.13 17.81
46. Rhode Island 1,052,567 34,787 3.30 0.41 23.14
47. South Carolina 4,625,364 79,935 1.73 15.29 100.09
48. West Virginia 1,852,994 27,142 1.46 2.47 71.92
49. New York 19,378,102 585,849 3.02 2.12 -0.73
50. Puerto Rico 3,725,789 122,246 3.28 -2.17 -22.83
51. Maine 1,328,361 20,941 1.58 4.19 65.58
52. District of Columbia 601,723 17,316 2.88 5.19 71.92
Total (with Puerto Rico) 312,471,327 9,026,389 2.89 9.55 29.23
U.S. Population 308,745,538 9,009,073 2.92 9.71 31.98

Tables compiled by Steven F. Riley. Source: United States Census Bureau

2000 Census Data for “Two or More Races” for States Above
# State Total Population Two or More Races (TOMR) Percentage
1. Louisiana 4,469,976 48,265 1.08
2. Mississippi 2,844,658 20,021 0.74
3. New Jersey 8,414,250 213,755 2.54
4. Virginia 7,078,515 143,069 2.02
5. Maryland 5,296,486 103,587 1.96
6. Arkansas 2,673,400 35,744 1.34
7. Iowa 2,926,324 31,778 1.09
8. Indiana 6,080,485 75,672 1.24
9. Vermont 608,827 7,335 1.20
10. Illinois 12,419,293 235,016 1.89
11. Oklahoma 3,450,654 155,985 4.52
12. South Dakota 754,844 10,156 1.35
13. Texas 20,851,820 514,633 2.47
14. Washington 5,894,121 213,519 3.62
15. Oregon 3,421,399 104,745 3.06
16. Colorado 4,301,261 122,187 2.84
17. Utah 2,233,169 47,195 2.11
18. Nevada 1,998,257 76,428 3.82
19. Missouri 5,595,211 82,061 1.47
20. Alabama 4,447,100 44,179 0.99
21. Hawaii 1,211,537 259,343 21.41
22. Nebraska 1,711,263 23,953 1.40
23. North Carolina 8,049,313 103,260 1.28
24. Delaware 783,600 13,033 1.66
25. Kansas 2,688,418 56,496 2.10
26. Wyoming 493,782 8,883 1.80
27. California 33,871,648 1,607,646 4.75
28. Ohio 11,353,140 157,885 1.39
29. Connecticut 3,405,565 74,848 2.20
30. Pennsylvania 12,281,054 142,224 1.16
31. Wisconsin 5,363,675 66,895 1.25
32. Arizona 5,130,632 146,526 2.86
33. Idaho 1,293,953 25,609 1.98
34. New Mexico 1,819,046 66,327 3.65
35. Montana 902,195 15,730 1.74
36. Tennessee 5,689,283 63,109 1.11
37. North Dakota 642,200 7,398 1.15
38. Minnesota 4,919,479 82,742 1.68
39. Alaska 626,932 34,146 5.45
40. Florida 15,982,378 376,315 2.35
41. Georgia 8,186,453 114,188 1.39
42. Kentucky 4,041,769 42,443 1.05
43. New Hampshire 1,235,786 13,214 1.07
44. Michigan 9,938,444 192,416 1.94
45. Massachusetts 6,349,097 146,005 2.30
46. Rhode Island 1,048,319 28,251 2.69
47. South Carolina 4,012,012 39,950 1.00
48. West Virginia 1,808,344 15,788 0.87
49. New York 18,976,457 590,182 3.11
50. Puerto Rico 3,808,610 158,415 4.16
51. Maine 1,274,923 12,647 0.99
52. District of Columbia 572,059 13,446 2.35
Total (with Puerto Rico) 285,230,516 6,984,643 2.45
  United States 281,421,906 6,826,228 2.43

Tables compiled by Steven F. Riley.  Source: United States Census Bureau

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Bleeding Borders: Race, Gender, and Violence in Pre-Civil War Kansas

Posted in Books, History, Media Archive, Monographs, Native Americans/First Nation, Slavery, United States on 2009-11-02 02:40Z by Steven

Bleeding Borders: Race, Gender, and Violence in Pre-Civil War Kansas

Louisiana State University Press
April 2009
224 pages
Series: Conflicting Worlds: New Dimensions of the American Civil War
Illustrations: 5 halftones, 1 map
Cloth ISBN-13: 978-0-8071-3390-3

Kristen Tegtmeier Oertel, Associate Professor of History
Millsaps College

In Bleeding Borders, Kristen Tegtmeier Oertel offers a fresh, multifaceted interpretation of the quintessential sectional conflict in pre-Civil War Kansas. Instead of focusing on the white, male politicians and settlers who vied for control of the Kansas territorial legislature, Oertel explores the crucial roles Native Americans, African Americans, and white women played in the literal and rhetorical battle between proslavery and antislavery settlers in the region. She brings attention to the local debates and the diverse peoples who participated in them during that contentious period.

Oertel begins by detailing the settlement of eastern Kansas by emigrant Indian tribes and explores their interaction with the growing number of white settlers in the region. She analyzes the attempts by southerners to plant slavery in Kansas and the ultimately successful resistance of slaves and abolitionists. Oertel then considers how crude frontier living conditions, Indian conflict, political upheaval, and sectional violence reshaped traditional Victorian gender roles in Kansas and explores women’s participation in the political and physical conflicts between proslavery and antislavery settlers.

Oertel goes on to examine northern and southern definitions of “true manhood” and how competing ideas of masculinity infused political and sectional tensions. She concludes with an analysis of miscegenation–not only how racial mixing between Indians, slaves, and whites influenced events in territorial Kansas, but more importantly, how the fear of miscegenation fueled both proslavery and antislavery arguments about the need for civil war.

As Oertel demonstrates, the players in Bleeding Kansas used weapons other than their Sharpes rifles and Bowie knives to wage war over the extension of slavery: they attacked each other’s cultural values and struggled to assert their political wills. They jealously guarded ideals of manhood, womanhood, and whiteness even as the presence of Indians and blacks and the debate over slavery raised serious questions about the efficacy of these principles. Oertel argues that ultimately, many Native Americans, blacks, and women shaped the political and cultural terrain in ways that ensured the destruction of slavery, but they, along with their white male counterparts, failed to defeat the resilient power of white supremacy.

Moving beyond a conventional political history of Kansas, Bleeding Borders breaks new ground by revealing how the struggles of this highly-diverse region contributed to the national move toward disunion and how the ideologies that governed race and gender relations were challenged as North, South, and West converged on the border between slavery and freedom.

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