Kansas State Historical Society.

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lishment in 1946 now totals nearly three million. During the past year more
than 340,000 were made: 277,976 of newspapers and 64,728 of archives, books
and manuscripts.

One major project, the filming of the Fort Scott Monitor and the Tribune,
has been completed through 1950. The files included were the Weekly Monitor,
June 12, 1867-December 8, 1869; the Daily Monitor, November 9, 1869-April

12, 1904; the Daily Tribune, January 1, 1904-April 13, 1904; and the Tribune
and Monitor, April 14, 1904-December 30, 1950.

Because of their poor condition the following files of early Sherman county
newspapers were microfilmed: The Adviser, Voltaire, December 3, 1885-
December 2, 1886; Sherman Center News, July 22, 1886-October 13, 1887;
Sherman County News, Voltaire, October 1, 1886-April 27, 1888; Sherman
County Dark Horse, Goodland, June 10, 1886-December 27, 1894; Sherman
County Republican, Goodland, August 27, 1886-June 27, 1890; Goodland
Republican, July 4, 1890-December 25, 1891. Three North Topeka newspapers,
The Kansas Breeze, April 13, 1894-September 6, 1895; the Mail, October 20,
1882-September 6, 1895; and the Topeka Mail and Kansas Breeze, September

13, 1895-December 26, 1903, were also filmed because of deterioration of the
original files, as were the Kansas City (Mo.) Commercial Indicator, March 9,
1882-November 15, 1883, and the Livestock Indicator, November 22, 1883-
December 29, 1892; and the Oklahoma Capital and Oklahoma State Capital,
Guthrie, March 30, 1889-September 24, 1892.

Microfilming of the Salina Journal was completed early in the year, and the
following runs of other Salina papers were filmed: the Semi-Weekly Journal,
April 16, 1912-May 29, 1917; Kansas Farm Journal, May 31, 1917-June 27,
1918; Western Kansas Journal, July 4, 1918-March 11, 1920; Salina Daily
Journal, March 31, 1887-May 31, 1888, Salina Daily Union, April 9, 1917-
December 31, 1918.

J. L. Napier, editor of the Newton Kansan, lent the following newspapers
for microfilming: Newton Kansan, August 22, 1872- August 14, 1873, and
August 20, 1874-August 10, 1876; and the first Harvey County News of Newton,
August 18, 1875-August 16, 1876. Mr. Napier's co-operation was greatly ap-
preciated since the files, for the most part, represented a period not previously
covered in the Society's collections for Newton.

The Topeka Daily Capital was filmed for the period July 1, 1938-June 30,
1946. Files of the Arkansas City Traveler are being collated, and filming has
been completed from January 1, 1888, to May 31, 1898.


Nearly 13,000 certified copies of census records were issued during the year,
an increase of more than 66 percent over the preceding year. In July, 1952,


1,386 records were issued, the largest number in any month in the history
of the division. The steady increase in requests for census records is due in
part to employment relating to the defense effort, and to the increasingly large
number of persons who need proof of age for social security and other retire-
ment programs. The copies are furnished by the Society without charge.

During the year 4,237 patrons called in person at the newspaper and census
divisions. In the resulting research 7,056 single issues and 3,520 bound volumes
of newspapers, 982 microfilm reels and 16,328 census volumes were examined.

The Society's List of Kansas Newspapers and Periodicals, which was issued
more than 50 times during the past 75 years, has been discontinued. In 1951
the printing appropriation was insufficient. This year the Kansas Press Service
began publication of the Kansas Newspaper Directory and Advertising Rate
Book, making publication of the Society's list unnecessary. Practically all
Kansas newspapers continue to be received for filing, however. These include
59 dailies, one triweekly, 11 semiweeklies, and 317 regular weeklies.

The Society's files of original Kansas newspapers as of January 1, 1952,
totaled 54,787 bound volumes, in addition to more than 10,000 bound volumes
of out-of-state newspapers dated from 1767 to 1952. The Society's collection
of newspapers on microfilm now totals 3,619 reels.

The following publishers are regularly donating microfilm copies of their
current issues to the Society: Angelo Scott, lola Register; Dolph Simons, Law-
rence Daily Journal-World; Dan Anthony, III, Leavenworth Times; and Henry
Blake, Milton Tabor, and Leland Schenck, Topeka Daily Capital

Among the older newspapers collected this year were five volumes of lola
newspapers from the San Diego Historical Society, a gift of Mrs. Fred Myers,
Fallbrook, Cal. Included were issues of the Allen County Courant from January
11 to August 1, 1868, and the Neosho Valley Register from August 5, 1868, to
June 2, 1869, periods for which the Society had no coverage. The late W. W.
Graves, St. Paul, donated Vol. 1, No. 1, of the Osage Mission Daily Transcript,
dated October 2, 1873. Alan W. Farley, Kansas City, Kan., presented The
New South, Port Royal, S. C., January 3, and June 20, 1863, a Civil War sol-
dier's newspaper, and the Wyandott City Register, July 18, 1857. The Inde-
pendence Pioneer, July 2, 1870, was received from C. G. Connelly, Tribune
Printing Co., Independence.

Donors of miscellaneous newspapers included: John W. McReynolds, Man-
hattan; Willard C. Heiss, Indianapolis, Ind.; Mrs. Luella P. Britt, Fort Smith,
Ark.; and W. F. Thompson, Walter Saar, J. H. Whipple, and Mrs. Guilford
Dudley, Topeka.


On August 26 a Kansas newspaper began an editorial as follows:

"My eye was attracted yesterday to an article in The Kansas Historical
Quarterly entitled 'The Annals of Kansas/ It told of the massive volume of
Annals published in 1875 by Daniel W. Wilder almost 700 pages of fine print;
of the revision in 1886 with 11 years added; and of the 1& million words since
written by Jennie Owen and now being edited and compressed for publication.

"Gosh, I thought, how dull can a subject be? Who could yawn enough
times to prepare a day-by-day chronology of state history, let alone read it?

"But the Quarterly went on and printed, for an example, the newly prepared
Annals of the single year 1886. And I'll be darned if I didn't find it fascinating


Many others felt as this editor did about the sampling of the new Annals
of Kansas, which appeared in the August number of the Quarterly. There is not
room, of course, to publish the entire work, covering 1886 through 1925, in the
Quarterly. This will require two or three full-sized volumes, and publication
cannot be undertaken without a special printing appropriation. The problem
will be submitted to the legislature this winter. If support is obtained, it is
hoped that the Annals can be published for release early in the centennial years
of territorial Kansas, 1954-1961, as a part of our observance.

During the year the manuscript has been revised, condensed, and copy read
to 1904. As already noted, the year 1886 was published in the August Quar-
terly, and 1887 appears in the November issue, which will be in the mail this
week. The copy for the years 1888-1895 is ready for the printer. Copy for
the years 1896 to 1904 has been read, revised, condensed, and re-checked, and
is almost ready for final typing. When completed for printing the entire manu-
script will have been cut about 50 percent.


The attendance in the museum for the year was 41,289. Thirty-one relics
were accessioned, including the official state seal used by the governor from
the beginning of statehood in 1861 to 1952. A bronze bust of Ed Howe,
sculptured by Mrs. Sheila Burlingame of New York City, has been given by
Mrs. Clyde Robertson of Boulder, Colo. Mrs. H. G. Beall gave several small
medical instruments, once owned by Dr. G. M. Morrow of North Topeka, which
were found after the 1951 flood. The Woman's Kansas Day Club and the
Daughters of the American Revolution have added several items to their

The appearance of the museum has been improved by painting the floors
and replacing some of the old display cards. Many of the oil paintings have
been cleaned and restored.


Extended research on the following persons and subjects was done during
the year: Jedediah Smith; Horace Greeley; Lewis Bodwell; Dr. John Brinkley;
William Becknell, father of the Santa Fe trail; contributions of Dr. Johnston
Lykins and Robert Simerwell to missions and evangelism; the administration of
missions in the Kansas Baptist convention; history of the American Indian As-
sociation; Indian enterprises of Isaac McCoy; Osage ceded tracts in Neosho
and Labette counties; Delaware Indians; Pottawatomie Indian claims; economic
development of southwest Kansas; population movements in southwest Kansas,
1880 to date; economic history of Ness county; southeast Kansas land history;
pioneer history along the Santa Fe trail; pioneer days in Kansas; the Boston
Syndicate and the development of street railways in Topeka; Chisholm trail;
the circuit Chautauqua; Mennonites; physical education curriculum in Kansas
colleges; state lands; and histories of Abilene, Monrovia and Atchison county,
Blue Rapids, and Enterprise.


October 1, 1951, to September 30, 1952


Books 977

Pamphlets 1,587

Magazines (bound volumes) 229


Separate manuscripts 3,200

Manuscript volumes 3,336

Manuscript maps None

Reels of microfilm 58

Private manuscripts:

Separate manuscripts 1,200

Volumes None

Reels of microfilm 2

Printed maps, atlases and charts ....: 386

Newspapers ( bound volumes ) 653

Reels of microfilm 427

Pictures 768

Museum objects 31


Books, pamphlets, newspapers (bound and microfilm reels)

and magazines 451,736

Separate manuscripts (archives) 1,793,811

Manuscript volumes (archives) 61,653

Manuscript maps ( archives ) 583

Microfilm reels ( archives) 740

Printed maps, atlases and charts 12,168

Withdrawn 2,462

Total 9,706

Pictures 25,963

Museum objects 33,537


The Kansas Historical Quarterly is now in its 21st year. Reduction of the
Society's binding and printing appropriation for the current biennium made it
necessary to postpone some of the routine binding of books, magazines, and
newspapers; and the Quarterly is being issued with fewer pages. The current
volume 20 will consist of the eight numbers of the Quarterly appearing in 1952
and 1953.

The lack of sufficient funds will be brought to the attention of the budget
director and legislature this winter. Not only should the cut be restored, but
enough in addition should be allocated to meet increased costs, and increased
printing, if the Society is to publicize adequately Kansas history and historic
sites in the centennial years just ahead.

Meanwhile, one of the Society's Chicago members, taking notice of our
straitened circumstances, sent five dollars to aid the printing fund.


Among the interesting articles published in 1952 are Dr. Robert Taft's
"Pictorial Record of the Old West/' No. 15 of the series; "The Great Flood of
1844," by S. D. Flora; "Vincent B. Osborne's Civil War Experiences," edited by
Joyce Farlow and Louise Barry; "The Administration of Federal Land Laws
in Western Kansas, 1880-1890," by Dr. George L. Anderson; and "The Rev.
Louis Dumortier, S. J., Itinerant Missionary to Central Kansas, 1859-1867," by
Sister M. Evangeline Thomas.

Special thanks continue to be due Dr. James C. Malin of the University of
Kansas who has always given generously of his time and knowledge in the
selection of articles for the Quarterly.


Hundreds of school children were among the thousands who visited Shawnee
Mission the past year. Occasional letters of appreciation are received, such as
the following from a Brownie troop: "We enjoyed the trip to the Old Indian
Mission. We liked going up the creaky stairs. We liked the school room.
We liked the teacher's desk and we liked the loom. We liked the little model
house. Thank you for your time."

A miniature covered wagon, hitched to a yoke of white oxen, and two farm
wagons, one of which is hitched to ten horses, were interesting accessions.
The miniatures were made by H. C. Douglas, an early settler of Shawnee, who
carved the animals with a pocket knife. A hand carder was given by Mrs.
James Glenn Bell, retiring president of the Shawnee Mission Indian Historical


Though our wheels seemed to grind as slowly as those of a covered wagon
traveling down the Santa Fe trail a century ago, they also turned as surely,
and the Old Kaw Mission was finally opened September 18 as a museum.

Following the floods of July, 1951, when water three-feet deep flowed
through the building, available funds were sufficient only to give the building
and grounds a rough cleaning. Major repairs and redecorating had to await
action by the state's emergency fund board, which met March 18, 1952, and
allocated $2,230 for the work. The contractor, who was immediately engaged,
finished on September 13. On September 18 his work was inspected, an old
display case and several exhibits were moved in, and the Kaw Mission became
a state museum. It will feature the histories of the Old Santa Fe trail, Council
Grove, and the Kaw Indians for whom Kansas was named.


There were 3,087 visitors at the First Capitol the past year, which is a slight
increase. Although the number is considerably below the totals in prewar
years, the new trend upward is encouraging.


Having been closely associated with the members of the Society's staff for
21 years, it gives me real pleasure to state publicly that I deeply appreciate the
fine co-operation they have always given me. As in the past, many of the
accomplishments mentioned in these reports have been due to their efforts.

Recently one of our directors asked if we could help him run down an out-
dated rural school geography textbook. We could and did. And he wrote
back: "Thanks, thanks and thanks. I had not seen that picture, nor the book,
for at least 52 years. When it comes to getting things for a fellow, the Kansas
State Historical Society is unbeatable."


Special mention should be made of the heads of the departments: Edgar
Langsdorf, assistant secretary and manager of the building; Mrs. Lela Barnes,
treasurer; Helen M. McFarland, librarian; the late Edith Smelser, curator of
the museum; Kirke Mechem, editor; and Jennie S. Owen, annalist.

Note should also be made of the work of the custodians of the historic sites
under the Society's management: Mr. and Mrs. Harry Hardy at Shawnee Mis-
sion, John Scott at the First Capitol, and Mr. and Mrs. Elwood Jones at the
Kaw Mission. Some of these people have been on the job for years, working
virtually seven days a week, and commendation is due them for their loyalty
and good managership.

Respectfully submitted,

NYLE H. MILLER, Secretary.

At the conclusion of the reading of the secretary's report, T. M.
Lillard moved that it be accepted. Motion was seconded by Mrs.
W. D. Philip, and the report was accepted.

President Beck then called for the report of the treasurer, Mrs.
Lela Barnes:


Based on the audit of the state accountant for the period
August 22, 1951, to July 31, 1952.

Balance, August 22, 1951:

Cash $4,963.27

U. S. savings bonds, Series G 8,700.00


Memberships $942.00

Reimbursement for postage 842.67

Interest on bonds . . 242.50


Disbursements $1,406.71

Balance, July 31, 1952:

Cash $5,583.73

U. S. savings bonds, Series G 8,700.00




Balance, August 22, 1951:

Cash $122.88

U. S. treasury bonds 950.00


Bond interest $27.24

Savings account interest 1.46

~ $1,101.58

Disbursements :

Books $89.22

Balance, July 31, 1952:

Cash $62.36

U. S. treasury bonds 950.00

~ $1,101.58

Balance, August 22, 1951:

Cash $81.04

U. S. treasury bonds 500.00


Bond interest $14.42

Saving account interest .73


Balance, July 31, 1952:

Cash $96.19

U. S. treasury bonds 500.00



This donation is substantiated by a U. S. savings bond, Series G, in the
amount of $1,000. The interest is credited to the membership fee fund.


Balance, August 22, 1951:

Cash (deposited in membership fee fund) $783.69

U. S. savings bonds (shown in total bonds,

membership fee fund) 5,200.00



Interest ( deposited in membership fee fund )


Hiram Hill papers, dated mainly 1855-1873, and

relating to financial and business matters in early Kansas ....

Balance, July 31, 1952:

Cash . fc $763.69

U. S. savings bonds, Series G 5,200.00






This report covers only the membership fee fund and other custodial funds.
It is not a statement of the appropriations made by the legislature for the main-
tenance of the Society. These disbursements are not made through the treasurer
of the Society but through the state auditor. For the year ending June 30,
1952, these appropriations were: Kansas State Historical Society, $106,882.00;
Memorial building $28,428.00; Old Shawnee Mission, $6,724.00; Kaw Mission,
$2,500.00; First Capitol of Kansas, $2,362.00.

On motion by John S. Dawson, seconded by Joseph C. Shaw, the
report of the treasurer was accepted.

The report of the executive committee on the audit by the state
accountant of the funds of the Society was called for and read by
John S. Dawson:


October 17, 1952.
To the Board of Directors, Kansas State Historical Society:

The executive committee being directed under the bylaws to check the
accounts of the treasurer, states that the state accountant has audited the funds
of the State Historical Society, the Old Shawnee Mission, the First Capitol
of Kansas and the Kaw Mission, from August 22, 1951, to July 31, 1952, and
that they are hereby approved.

JOHN S. DAWSON, Chairman,




On motion by John S. Dawson, seconded by C. M. Correll, the
report was accepted.

The report of the nominating committee for officers of the Society
was read by John S. Dawson:


October 17, 1952.
To the Board of Directors, Kansas State Historical Society:

Your committee on nominations submits the following report for officers of
the Kansas State Historical Society:

For a one-year term: Robert Taft, Lawrence, president; Angelo Scott, lola,
first vice-president; F. D. Farrell, Manhattan, second vice-president.
For a two-year term: Mrs. Lela Barnes, Topeka, treasurer.

Respectfully submitted,
JOHN S. DAWSON, Chairman.

The report was referred to the afternoon meeting of the board.
There being no further business, the meeting adjourned.


The annual meeting of the Kansas State Historical Society was
called to order at 2 P. M. The address by President William T.
Beck follows:

Address of the President




TYEING a newspaper publisher, I have been a fairly constant
*-* reader of The Kansas Historical Collections and Quarterly since
their publication began in 1881. But only recently, when 28 of the
36 fat volumes were added to my library, did I realize the immensity
of the task that had been accomplished in assembling and record-
ing in permanent form such a complete history of Kansas people
and events. It constitutes a saga of the state's 91 years of colorful
life, and reaches even farther into its early background. I may say
the people make the history, the writers record it, and the State
Historical Society collects and preserves it for the use of present and
future generations. Certainly the people of Kansas can be no less
than deeply appreciative of this valuable service that has been done
for their state.

In the senate last session, in pleading for an adequate appropria-
tion to finance the publication of the Quarterly, I ventured the
opinion that the Historical Society was rendering to the state one of
the choicest and most worthwhile services, and if in a spasm of
economy, commendable most of the time, the body should cripple
the publication and preservation of Kansas' history and noble tra-
ditions, the state would be poor indeed! I trust and believe future
legislatures will offer a generous hand in the support of this Society.

An important segment of the state's recorded history is supplied
by Wilder's Annals of Kansas. This rare volume (my copy was
published in 1875) is a scarce number on library shelves. In cate-
gorical form it reviews the life of the commonwealth from the year
1542 down through 1874. Then in 1886, Wilder issued a second
edition, a reprint of the first, with 11 years added. Of late years
much attention has been focused on this history, which William
Allen White pronounced a monumental work.



In the August, 1952, number of the Quarterly, former secretary
Kirke Mechem writes interestingly of the successful effort to con-
tinue the Annals from the date Wilder left off and to bring the
history more nearly to date. He tells briefly of a legislative appro-
priation in 1945 for the work, names the committee in charge of
the project, and the employment of Miss Jennie Owen, who with
assistants has collected material to extend the history through the
year 1925. Mr. Mechem's article includes a reprint of the first year
of the new section, 1886, and it is noted that the style and diction
follow closely that of Mr. Wilder.

Indeed, this resurgence of a literary and historical feat of the
long ago suggests the subject of this paper something of the life,
character, and habits of Daniel Webster Wilder, the student, the
country editor, the politician and office holder, the historian, the
literate, who brought culture, wide knowledge, and a spirit of ad-
venture from his secure Eastern home to the wild uncharted plains
of Kansas territory.

The salient points of Web Wilder's life have been beautifully
written by the late William E. Connelley and recorded in the
archives here his birth in Blackstone, Mass., July 15, 1832; his
marriage to Mary E. Irvin March 3, 1864; his death in Hiawatha,
July 15, 1911. He was the seventh son of Dr. Abel Wilder.

Dr. Wilder was able to give his son a thorough course in educa-
tion; four years in the Boston Latin School, four years at Harvard,
and a course in law afterwards. During his Harvard days, he
roomed with Artemus Ward, and was a member and orator of the
Hasty Pudding Club. In all his years of schooling, he invariably
was awarded prizes for superior scholarship. It was during his
days in the Boston Latin School that his scholarly traits first revealed
themselves. During his school years he kept a diary. These little
hand-written notebooks are in possession of a living daughter and
will be presented to this Society. Diaries are usually ephemeral
things, maintained for short periods, but Wilder's daily notations
were kept sedulously throughout his school courses and long after-
wards, in fact from 1848 to 1876, exceeding the period covered by
the famous Pepys' Diary in London, which was seven years. For
a boy in his 'teens, they reflected a serious attitude towards his
studies. Each day's entry recorded the weather, then his attend-
ance at classes, his pleasure in attending concerts and lectures. At
the end of each day's entry was found this unvarying duty per-
formed: "Have read four chapters in the Old Testament." In the


diary are found lengthy resumes of sermons by his pastor which he
had transcribed from notes taken at the church services.

A notation reveals he had gone to church to hear Dr. Lyman
Beecher preach, and later he had heard in concert the Swedish
nightingale Jenny Lind. Interspersed through his daily entries,
increasing as his store of knowledge broadened, can be found quo-
tations from the classics and the Bible. They give first evidence of

Online LibraryKansas State Historical SocietyThe Kansas historical quarterly (Volume 20) → online text (page 43 of 76)