THE ARCHIVES OF KANSAS AUTHORS CLUB

Kansas Authors Club ARCHIVES
—by Gail L. Martin, state archivist

At the 1999 Kansas Authors Club’s convention in Pittsburg I was privileged to tell our members about "The many famous Kansans I had found, while becoming familiar with the state archives." One of those was Wm. Allen White, who was a member from 1904 till his death in 1944.

I want to share with you some of the vast amount of memorabilia those and other members have left us through almost 100 years of our organization.

Take for instance our districts: In 1911 our writing organization realized the membership were becoming wide spread around Kansas & elected a vice-president from each of the eight Congressional Districts in Kansas.

1st: George Morehouse, Topeka

2nd: W.H. Carruth, Lawrence

3rd: J.M. Cavaness, Chanute

4th: Walt Mason, Emporia

5th: W.A. McKeever, Manhattan

6th: Mrs. Bessie A. Stanley, Lincoln

7th: A.B.Reeves, Dodge City

8th: Samuel F. Woolard, Wichita.

Then at some date that I haven’t found yet the districts were changed. In 1989 the districts were again realigned, so districts are the way they are today.

The KAC archives are stored in 4 file drawers, 2 foot long and a foot wide fitted with hanging file racks.

File drawer #1 contains 9 different files:

file #1 Kansas Collection Spencer Library : The club voted in 1907 to start a collection of all books by Kansas Authors. I want to encourage everybody to promote this collection by telling every Kansan you met that has had a book published, no matter when, to donate a copy to the collection.

file #2 Yearbook information: tells about collections of other yearbooks. Some are at the Forsyth Library at Fort Hays State College; some at Ks. Historical Society in Topeka & the biggest collection is at Spencer Research Library at KU. The 1954 yearbook shows the club celebrated it’s 50th ann. & 1979 was their 75th Diamond Jubilee annual meeting. All held in Topeka, so our 100th will in 2004 & also be held in Topeka.

We still need some of the older yearbooks for the late 1920/1930’s. The two oldest books we had in the archives have been sent to Spencer library to be preserved. They were hard bound books composed of yearbooks 1913/1920 & 1921/1924 The library gave KAC copies of the two books for research purposes, I have them in two notebooks. The rest of the yearbooks we have in the archives date from 1934 through 2002 and they are stored in order. Extras year books are stored away in boxes.

I found the Kansas Authors Club had a display of members published books at the state fair in Hutchinson in year book of 1923.

file #3 KAC History: has stationary used in the past & membership lapel pen information, do you have one. I think it is an honor to wear this pen. file #4 KAC Constitution & Bylaws;

file #5 KAC Charter information;

file #6 KAC Bonds & Audits;

file #7 Income Tax Information;

file #8 Tax Exemptions Information;

file #9 Executive Board Minutes since 1956:

File drawer #2 contains 12 different folders:

file #1 State and District Newsletters:

file #2 Web Page online: http://www.skyways.org/orgs/kac

file #3 Writers in the School project:

file #4 ACAAK:

The Association of Community Arts Agencies for Kansas Districts applications for grant

#7, 1990; #1, 1991; #2, 1992; #4, 1994; #5, 1995

file #5 Coffin Awards: Since 1979

file #6 Governor’s Art Award: The state organization applied for this in 1994 & 1995

file #7 Lyons Award: 1986 through 1998

file #8 State Writing Contest:

file #9 State Conventions:

file #10 Past Presidents:

file #11 State Secretary’s records: 1950 to current.

file #12 Special KAC Awards:

File drawer #3 contains:

District Information: districts #1 through #7 contain inf. on members & district activities.

File drawer #4 contains:

Financial Records from 1940:

Two hand stamps of Kansas Authors Club

A real to real tape recording of KSAC Creative Writers

a box of woodcuts with pictures of early members used in the yearbooks.

and a membership book 1928 through 1930.

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The current years files are stored in a rolling file and added to the other files each year.


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Membership Card Files

The archives have 4 small metal files holding index cards of members labeled A -- D; E --K; L -- Q; R -- Z. These are updated as new members join and now they are being kept on the computer as well. These cards contain any information on members that is available.

So in conclusion this is the a sample of how the Kansas Authors Club’s archives look.

(Provided by State Archivist Gail Martin,1995-2002, who lives in El Doradto, Kansas)

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