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Thomas L. Kane papers on the Civil War, 1861-1906

Identifier: Vault MSS 792 Series 5

Scope and Contents

Contains material relating to Kane's Civil War experience, including his correspondence with his wife, his capture by the Confederate Army, his release in a prisoner exchange, his Bucktails regiment, and a variety of post-war materials, including his correspondence with the artist of the murals for the Battle of Gettysburg.


  • 1861-1906


Conditions Governing 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.

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.


6 boxes

Language of Materials



Arranged in five subseries: 1. Papers on the 42nd Pennsylvania Infantry Regiment (1861-1906). 2. Thomas L. and Elizabeth Wood Kane correspondence from Civil War (1861-1863). 3. Correspondence from Civil War (1861-1877). 4. Notes, correspondence, and other material from Civil War (1861-1883). 5. Correspondence and other material on military service (1869-1878).

Other Finding Aids

File-level inventory available online.

Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States