Kate L. Cowick

MISS KATE L. COWICK, now serving her second term as county treasurer of Wyandotte County, probably has the most responsible office of any woman in Kansas. She has the business efficiency needed in the administration of such an office. She is thoroughly trained in the public service, having for many years been a teacher and administrative official of schools, and her work as county treasurer has given her not a little of justly earned fame among the women of Kansas.

Miss Cowick is a native of Missouri, born at Tarkio in Atchison County on February 8, 1885. She was the youngest of the three children of Samuel R. and Katherine (Travers) Cowick. Her mother was born, in the South of England and went with her parents to Ireland and from there to the State of Illinois; where she was reared and where she married Samuel R. Cowick. Samuel R. Cowick was for many years a well known figure in newspaper work. He was editor of a Missouri paper and subsequently moved to Trego County, Kansas, locating at Wakeeny, when that town was on the frontier. There he was connected with the Western Kansas World, a paper which was established in 1879 and is the oldest journal of the county. The family had their home in Wakeeny for fourteen years, when Samuel R. Cowick moved to Lyndon, Osage County, and for three years was proprietor of the Lyndon Herald. After that he lived for several years in Oklahoma, and while living in that state had the misfortune of suffering a stroke of apoplexy. From this he never entirely recovered; and after many years of suffering died in Kansas City, Kansas, in April, 1917.

Miss Kate Cowick was reared and educated chiefly at Wakeeny, and spent twelve years in the schools of that city. She attended high school at Wichita and at the age of eighteen began teaching at Waggonner. Oklahoma. She was connected with the schools of that town both in the grade and high schools for seven years, and was principal of the high school when she left the city to enter school work in Kansas City.

On coming to Wyandotte County Miss Cowick taught three years in the grade schools of Quindaro as principal, subsequently was principal for two years of the Longfellow School, and in 1915 entered upon her present duties as county treasurer, an office to which she was elected on the democratic ticket in 1914 by 1,200 majority. Her first term was a revelation of what a business woman could do in the handling of such an office and in 1916 she was chosen for a second term by the remarkable majority of 6,000 votes. Miss Cowick is a thorough student of public affairs, and belongs to various civic and philanthropic organizations in Kansas City, Kansas.

Her father was for many years actively identified with the republican party. While teaching school after his marriage he had read law in the office of an Illinois judge, and on moving to Trego County, Kansas, he served as county attorney four years and as probate judge a similar time. Samuel R. Cowick was a Mason and Odd Fellow and the family are all active in the Presbyterian Church.


A Standard History of Kansas and Kansans, written and compiled by William E. Connelley, Secretary of the Kansas State Historical Society, Topeka. Chicago: Lewis Publishing Company, copyright 1918; transcribed 1997.
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Tom & Carolyn Ward
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