From the collections at the Leavenworth County Historical Society and Museum. Reprinted with permission from The Leavenworth County Historical Society and Museum and the Leavenworth Times. Donated by Debra Graden.
The Anthony Letters
Travels to Cincinnati, Gets Fitted up With Big Gilt Sign
Leavenworth Times, 1956-7
Editors note: This is another in a series of letters written by Col. D. R. Anthony to his family in the east almost 100 years ago when Leavenworth was a new town and Kansas was still a territory. The letters give a clear picture of Leavenworth in its early period. The Times is publishing the letters each Sunday and Thursday.
Aetna Ins. Co. Offices
Cincinnati, March 1, 1858
Arrived here last night at 7 o'clock. Found all O.K. with the exception of my not remitting for December business and not writing them where I was and their not receiving any report for January or February.
All right now and General Bennett is fitting up for me a large supply of blanks--also a gilt letter sign 16 feet long by 2 feet wide. The Phoenix think they will give me their agency.
Compared with Leavenworth there is a good stage of water here in the river and boats are running freely. Shall go tonight or Sunday night to St. Louis.
This town has 220,000 people -- is very smokey. Well built and must do an enormous business.
The Aetna office here is fitted up equal to anything I ever saw--about like the Mutual Life office in New York. Some 10 or 15 clerks are employed.
D. R. Anthony
April 24, 1858.
About one month ago I sent you a note for $1,000 with directions to get it discounted and have bank notes forwarded to me by express.
I have not heard one word from it.
I have sold the land warrants I brought out with me from Rochester (880 acres) at a profit of $95. Many emigrants are coming in, mostly bonafide settlers.
In pleasant weather our Levee, Main, Cherokee and Delaware Streets are fairly blocked up with teams.
Leavenworth is the commercial metropolis of Kansas and will be of the whole country west of this point.
Our best business lots sustain good prices. Outside suburban property has depreciated slightly. Have made up my mind not to engage in any land speculations.
But any lands bought at or near the government price will be profitable and a large tract will come into the market next July.
I have been buying some exchange on New York this month and have written New York to open an account with some bank, and have also ordered a book of drafts to be got up in good style.
Have just engaged a very competent German to canvass for me amongst our foreign people -- we have a large number of Germans here. His name is Aug Shiekedauty. He was educated in an insurance office in Germany. I like him very much as he is a genuine go-ahead fellow. He says he is an advertisement himself-he is popular.
Hope you will write by first mail. Have small notes sent. It will have good circulation.
D. R. Anthony
Myron Strong has gone east. He has made some good business arrangements here.
Doct. John Reid has gone into the country with Wilder.
H. D. Mann has gone also. He likes the country very much.
Mr. Williams, son of Major John Williams, is here. He goes out to Utah as trainmaster.
Rev. Mr. Kalloch, of Boston came up on the same boat I did. He is to locate in this city and practice law.
Mr. Green, of South Adams, Mass. is clerking here.
Mr. March, formerly ticket agent of South Adams, is at Wyandotte.
The above are all of the personal items I can think of at present.