Charles L. Capen


American lawyer

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According to Wikipedia, Charles Laban Capen was a prominent Illinois lawyer. He was born in Union Springs, New York on January 31, 1845, the son of Luman Capen, a direct descendant of Bernard Capen, who was one of the 140 emigrants who left Dorchester, Dorset to found Dorchester, Massachusetts in 1630. Luman Capen was an ardent abolitionist and maintained a station of the Underground Railroad in Union Springs. A supporter of the short-lived Free Soil Party, in the wake of the Kansas–Nebraska Act, Luman Capen answered the call of the New England Emigrant Aid Company for abolitionists to settle in the Kansas Territory. Luman Capen thus moved his family to Lawrence, Kansas, with the Kansas Territory in the middle of the Bleeding Kansas series of events. Shortly after arriving in Lawrence, Luman Capen saw Jim Lane shoot a man dead in the streets of Lawrence. Appalled by this violence, the Capens returned to New York. The family then moved west a second time, initially settling on a farm near Bloomington, Illinois before moving into Bloomington in March 1856. As a boy of twelve, Charles L. Capen attended the founding meeting of the Illinois Republican Party, held in Bloomington, where he heard Lincoln's Lost Speech of May 29, 1856. Charles L. Capen attended the high school of the Illinois State Normal University, beginning in 1862.

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