Register of the Small Plains States Collections, 1841-1938

Processed by Don Walker; machine-readable finding aid created by Don Walker
Holt-Atherton Department of Special Collections
University Library, University of the Pacific
Stockton, CA 95211
Phone: (209) 946-2404
Fax: (209) 946-2810
© 1998
University of the Pacific. All rights reserved.

Register of the Small Plains States Collections, 1841-1938

Collection number: Mss2

Holt-Atherton Department of Special Collections

University Library

University of the Pacific

Contact Information

  • Holt-Atherton Department of Special Collections
  • University Library, University of the Pacific
  • Stockton, CA 95211
  • Phone: (209) 946-2404
  • Fax: (209) 946-2810
  • URL:
Processed by:
Don Walker
Date Completed:
October 1998
Encoded by:
Don Walker
© 1998 University of the Pacific. All rights reserved.

Descriptive Summary

Title: Small Plains States Collections,
Date (inclusive): 1841-1938
Collection number: Mss2
Extent: 0.25 linear ft.
Repository: University of the Pacific. Library. Holt-Atherton Department of Special Collections
Stockton, CA 95211
Shelf location: For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the library's online catalog.
Language: English.

Administrative Information


Collection is open for research.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Small Plains States Collections, Mss2, Holt-Atherton Department of Special Collections, University of the Pacific Library

Access Points


Fort Hays (Kan.) -History -Sources
Droughts -Kansas
Ness County (Kan.) -History -Sources
Frontier and pioneer life -Kansas
Farm life -Kansas
Farm life -Illinois
Smith Center (Kan.) -History -Sources
Leon (Kan.) -History -Sources
United States. Army -Military life -Documentation
Hancock County (Ill.) -History -Sources
Farm life -Minnesota -Mankato
Cookery, American -Recipes
Mankato (Minn.) -History -Sources
Railroads -Texas
Beaumont (Tex.) -History -Sources
Kansas City Southern Railway Company
Farmers -North Dakota -Correspondence
Norwegians -North Dakota -Correspondence
Farm life -Wisconsin
North Dakota -History -Sources
Wisconsin -History -Sources
Farm life -Iowa -Wright County
Women -Iowa -Scranton
Wright County (Iowa) -Social life and customs

Personal Names

Sheldon, Dora Crabtree (1856-1946)


Henry D. Crow was a homesteader at Bazine, Ness County, Kan. This collection consists of typescript copies of nine family letters describing the dismal financial situation and drought conditions of that time (1878-1880). [Ms2.C953]
The Foys were a farming family, first in Illinois (1850s), then in Leon and in Smith Center, Kansas (1880-1900). John and Rachel Foy apparently settled in Hancock, Ill. before 1854. Evidence in the correspondence suggests that they had a nephew, William, who fought in the Civil War. John Foy was apparently living in Leon, Kan. by 1875. One "Lois," possibly a granddaughter of John and Rachel Foy was living in Palmdale, Calif. in 1895. A "Grandma" Foy [Rachel?] wrote to her children in "Equality" [not a Kansas town] as late as 1900. This collection consists of photocopies of seven family letters describing: farm life in Illinois (1854); a soldier's life in various Southern locations, including Savannah, Ga. and Ft. Griffin, Texas (1861, 1864, 1877); a California emigrant's life in Palmdale (1895); and, farm life in Smith Center, Kan. (1900). [Ms2.F796]
S.H. Grannis was a Mankato, Minn. farmer and merchant (1840s-1870s). Little else is known of Grannis save that he was the maternal grandfather of Leland C. Case, founder of Westerners International and one-time editor of The Rotarian magazine. Case has identified this account book as having belonged to Grannis. The book chronicles payment for a wide variety of farmwork, other services, and houshold goods. The earliest entries date from 1841, but the book seems to have been used by several individuals for items dating as late as 1879. Toward the end of the volume are some recipes. [Ms2.G759]
Herbert Jonté was a conductor on the Kansas City Southern Railway. This collection consists of orders advising the conductor on the Beaumont-Vidor (Texas) passenger run of times when other trains would be using the tracks. [Ms2.K16]
Ole Tidemandson Kensrud and his brother Erik immigrated from Norway to America in 1867. They settled first in Iowa, then moved to West Mitchell, Wisc. (1876-1877), then to Fargo, N.D. (1878) and finally to Hillsboro, N.D., a few miles north of Fargo (1879). This collection consists of typescript translations by Anne Kensrud Thykeson of excerpts from letters the two Kensruds sent to relatives in Norway describing farm life on the Northern Plains. As many as sixteen letters are excerpted dating between May 1867 and March 1883. [Ms2.K36]
Dora Sheldon (1856-1946) was born and raised in Wright County, Iowa. She and her second husband, Newton B. Sheldon, farmed in Scranton, Iowa (1880-1900). This collection consists of reminiscences by Mrs. Sheldon of her childhood and early married life in the form of letters to various relatives (1938). There is also a brief biographical sketch of Mrs. Sheldon by an anonymous relative. [Ms2.S544]
Company A, 6th Cavalry marched 285 miles from Ft. Hays to Cedarville, Kan. and back during May and June 1872. Their purpose was to protect new railroad lines and cattle drives from marauding Indians. This collection consists of a report listing Company illnesses, injuries and treatments on that march. [Ms2.U58 C377]

Container List


1: CROW (HENRY D.) CORRESPONDENCE, 1878-1880 [C953] [typescript transcriptions]


1.1: HDC, Bazine, Kan. to "wife and father," 10-11-78


1.2: HDC to "father & family," 1-12-79


1.3: HDC to "father," 3-2-79; 3-9-79 [2 pp.]; 5-11-79; 9-7-79 [2 pp.]


1.4: HDC to "mother," 11-26-79


1.5: Mary Crow to "Mr. Crow," 1-18-80


1.6: HDC to "parents," 5-4-80


2: FOY FAMILY CORRESPONDENCE, 1854-1900 [F796] gift of Dean DeCarli [photocopies of originals]


2.1: Rachel & John Foy, Hancock Co., Ill. to "daughter," 11-9-54 [2 pp.]


2.2: William Foy, Co. B, 34 Regiment, Illinois Vol. Militia to ?, 11-5-61 [2 pp.]


2.3: William Foy?, Camp Shiloh near Savannah, Ga. to "Uncle John," 1864? [2 pp.]


2.4: "Your Pal," Leon, Kan. to "David," 1-17-? [2 pp.]


2.5: "Cousin John Foy," Leon, Kan. to "David," 1-30-75


2.6: "Pa J. Foy" to "Cousins," 1-30-75


2.7: N.D.? Foy, Ft. Griffin, Tex. to "mother," 9-18-77 [2 pp.]


2.8: "Lois," Palmdale, Calif. to "grandma," 6-29-95 [2 pp.]


2.9: "Your old mother," Smith Center, Kan. to "children in Equality," 2-25-00 [4 pp.]


3: GRANNIS (S.H.) BUSINESS RECORDS, 1841-1871 [G759] gift of Leland D. Case [one ledger of farm & store? accounts also containing a few recipes in a different hand; 163 pp.]


4: KANSAS CITY SOUTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY RECORDS, 1918 [K16] gift of Mrs. Herbert Jonté [Orders #41, 66 & 68; ink on printed forms]


5: KENSRUD FAMILY CORRESPONDENCE, 1867-1883 [K36] gift of Erling Erickson [dated excerpts; 5 pp. typescript]


MS 2 N 882 1941: NORTON, ARTHUR O Letter, 1941 October 2, Wellesley, Mass., to Judge H. D. Norton, Medford, Oregon. Holograph. Retired Wellesley College professor describing family history to his cousin. Nephew of Alfred B. Norton, Kansas pioneer & buffalo hunter who lived with Indians in 1850s.


6: SHELDON (DORA CRABTREE) DIARY AND REMINISCENCES, 1938 [S544] gift of Reginald R. Stuart [2 copies of similar text]


6.1: "Letters [1938] & parts of a diary by Dora Crabtree Sheldon" [photocopy of typescript; 47 pp.; letters are addressed to "Cousin" and to "Fanny"; diary is addressed to "Dora and Doris"]


6.2: [untitled, undated version of Mrs. Sheldon's epistolary account of her life in Wright County, Iowa; typescript, 11x14, 27 pp.; addressees as above]


7: U.S. ARMY, 6TH CAVALRY, COMPANY A. MONTHLY REPORT OF SICK & WOUNDED, 1872 [U58 C377] gift of Douglas Boyce


MS 2 W 734: WILLIS, FERN CLARK Diary of Fern Clark Willis, chronicling her first year of marriage and life in remote Northeastern Montana, 1910-1911. Typescript photocopy.


MS 2 W 861: WOLGAMOTT, BOON Letter, 1903 November 26, Downing, Missouri. Ms. Family matters; house construction plans. House floor plan drawn on reverse.