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Kansas Historical Notes - November 1940

November 1940 (Vol. 9, No. 4), pages 416 to 419.
Transcribed by lhn;
digitized with permission of the Kansas Historical Society.

Eight Kansas Historical Markers were placed on state highways during the three months' period ending October 31, 1940. These are the first of fifty selected by a committee of the Kansas Chamber of Commerce and the State Historical Society. Inscriptions are furnished by the Historical Society. The Kansas State Highway Commission builds, sets up and maintains the markers. Locations and dates of dedication of the first eight are: Shawnee Friends Mission, in roadside park at junction of K-10 and US-50, near Shawnee, Johnson county, August 31, 1940; Pike-Pawnee Village, on US-36 near Republican river bridge in Scandia, Republic county, September 20; Battle of Black Jack, in roadside park on US-50 three miles east of Baldwin, Douglas county, October 8; Highland Presbyterian Mission, on US-36 one-fourth mile east of east city limits of Highland, Doniphan county, October 9; Elwood, on US-36 near east city limits of Elwood, Doniphan county, October 16; Battle of Mine Creek, on US-69 13/4 miles south of Pleasanton, Linn county, October 25; Fort Dodge, on grounds of State Soldiers' Home, US-154, four miles southeast of Dodge City, Ford county, October 25, and St. Marys, on US-24 at the east edge of St. Marys, Pottawatomie county, October 27.

Temporary organization of the Washington County Historical Society was completed at a meeting at Hanover, July 22, 1940. About fifty persons were present, and the following temporary officers were elected: Leo Dieker, president; Ed. J. Flaherty, secretary, and John Merk, treasurer. A committee was appointed to draft a constitution and bylaws. A second meeting was held at Hanover, August 26. The chief objective of the society is to acquire and preserve the Hollenberg ranch house, near Hanover, which was built in 1857 and served for many years as a station on the Oregon trail and the Pony Express route. It is said to be the only Pony Express station still standing as it was first built.

The Northwest Kansas Historical Society opened its museum at Colby on August 3, 1940, the display consisting mainly of dishes, dolls, and novelty hobby collections. The present quarters are temporary, and the society expects that a permanent location will be secured when sufficient museum pieces are added.



The first Kansan to become commander-in-chief of the Grand Army of the Republic, W. W. Nixon of Jewell, was elected on September 12, 1940, at the seventy-fourth annual encampment of the organization held in Springfield, Ill.

Officers of the Riley County Historical Society elected to serve during 1940-1941 are: Judge Fred Smith, president; Mrs. Florence F. Harrop, vice-president; Mrs. F. L. Murdock, secretary; Mrs. Caroline Smith, treasurer; F. I. Burt, custodian, and G. H. Failyer, assistant custodian and historian. The directors are Mrs. Harrop, Mrs. Smith, Judge Smith, Sam C. Charlson, C. M. Correl, C. W. Emmons, S. A. Bardwell and Joe Haines.

New officers of the Ness County Historical Society elected at the annual meeting at Ness City, September 21, 1940, are: Mrs. G. Beardslee, president; Nina Bondurant, vice-president; Nelle Holtom, secretary, and Martha Borthwick, treasurer. The following members were chosen to serve as directors: Luke Pembleton, Belle Cole, J. R. Price, Neoma Henry, Mary Meik, J. C. M. Anderson, J. O'Brien, Lea Maranville, Sylvia Kerr and Belle Unruh. Plans for the coming year were discussed, and arrangements were made for a Hobby Fair held October 19. The annual election of officers of the Shawnee Mission Indian Historical Society was held September 23, 1940, at the Shawnee Methodist Mission near Kansas City. Mrs. Ross A. Smith of Merriam was chosen president, Mrs. X. Ouray Meyer, vice-president; Mrs. O. Wendell Shepard, recording secretary; Mrs. A. V. Fuller, corresponding secretary; Mrs. C. F. Terry, treasurer; Mrs. Carl Harder, historian, and Mrs. Percy Miller, curator of the museum. Frank C. Wornall of Kansas City, Mo., who was born eighty-five years ago in the north building of the mission, was again appointed supervisor of the society. Officers were formally installed October 28 when the society observed its founder's day. Mrs. Jack Weems Quarrier was the retiring president.

Crawford county is the most recent recruit to the growing list of Kansas counties establishing active organizations for collecting and preserving local history. On September 26, 1940, the Crawford County Historical Society was organized at Pittsburg with an initial membership of forty. Dr. Ralph H. Smith, of the State Teachers College at Pittsburg, was elected the first president. Other officers are H. B. Price, Cherokee, and Mrs. C. D. Gregg, McCune, vice-


presidents; Ralph Shideler, Girard, secretary; and Miss Gunnelia Smith, Cato, treasurer. The committee to nominate a board of directors includes Mrs. O. P. Dellinger, Mrs. J. U. Massey and F. W. Brinkerhoff. Speakers at the meeting were F. W. Brinkerhoff, editor of the Pittsburg Headlight and Sun, and Dr. C. M. Montee, former mayor of the city. The society plans soon to become affiliated with the Kansas Historical Society.

At the annual meeting of the Dickinson County Historical Society held at Abilene October 3, 1940, Bert Ramsey of Solomon and Mrs. Claudius Pontius of Enterprise were elected Vice-president and secretary respectively, replacing the outgoing officers, Mrs. A. B. Seelye and Mrs. H. M. Howard, whose terms had expired. Walter Wilkins of Chapman spoke on the subject, "Pioneer Landmarks," and presented to the society a large map of Dickinson county on which many pioneer locations are marked. Mrs. Tim Riordan of Solomon showed motion pictures taken by her son Robert at the spring meeting, mentioned in the May Quarterly. The president, Mrs. Carl Peterson of Enterprise, conducted the business session.

George T. Dawson of Elmdale was elected president of the Chase County Historical Society at its annual meeting October 5, 1940, at Cottonwood Falls. Other offIcers are Henry Rogler, vice-president; Mrs. Helen Austin, secretary; T. R. Wells, treasurer, and Mrs. Clara Hildebrand, historian. The executive committee reported that the manuscript of volume one of "Historical Sketches of Chase County" had been delivered to the printer, and that the finished book had been promised for delivery about December 1.

At the annual business meeting of the Hodgeman County Historical Society, held October 18, 1940, in Jetmore, the following officers were elected: L. W. Hubbell, president; Mrs. J. E. Mooney, vicepresident; E. W. Harlan, secretary; Mrs. 0. L. Teed, treasurer, and Mrs. Margaret Raser, historian. Mrs. Teed, Mr. Harlan and S. H. Pitts were named to three-year terms as directors, and Mrs. Raser was appointed chairman of the program committee. The society intends to mark several historic sites in Hodgeman county and to gather historical data on early county history.

The Rev. Angelus Lingenfelser, 0. S. B., secretary of the Kansas Catholic Historical Society, reports that during the past year several historical projects have received encouragement and assistance from his organization. The most noteworthy was that of the Clark County Council of Clubs for the erection of a marker on the site.


where a Benedictine monastery was established in 1876. Newspaper and periodical files, scrapbooks, pictures, books and letters have been added to the collections, and the Rev. Peter Beckman has been given continual assistance in preparing his doctoral dissertation on the early Catholic church in frontier Kansas.

One of the few definitive studies in the field of Kansas history was published in June, 1940, by the University of Kansas as the first in a new series of social science publications. The Birth of Kansas, by G. Raymond Gaeddert, comprising the major portion of a doctoral dissertation written in 1937 and titled "A History of the Establishment of the Kansas State Government," deals with the political problems of the years 1859-1862, from the period of the establishment of the Republican party in Kansas and the Wyandotte constitutional convention to the close of Governor Robinson's administration. The book is based almost entirely on original manuscripts, public archives and newspapers in the collections of the Kansas Historical Society. A detailed review of the book, by Cecil Howes, appeared in the Kansas City (Mo.) Times, July 2, 1940.

A History of the Kansas State College of Agriculture and Applied Science by the college historian, Dr. Julius T. Willard, was published recently by the Kansas State College Press at Manhattan. The volume of 568 pages is a detailed history of the school since its founding in 1858 as Bluemont Central College and its reorganization as a land-grant institution in 1863. Doctor Willard was born in 1862 only a few miles from the campus. He was enrolled as an undergraduate from 1879 to 1883 and has been a member of the faculty ever since.

John White Geary, Soldier-Statesman, by Harry Marlin Tinkcom (University of Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia, 1940), is a biography of the Mexican War soldier and one-time postmaster and mayor of San Francisco who served during 1856-1857 as the third commissioned governor of Kansas territory. The book is the first of a Pennsylvania Lives series published by the University Press.