15 March 2018

Etzanoa – The City Before Arkansas City

Etzanoa - The Great Settlement sat in 1601 where the city of Arkansas City now sits!
Etzanoa - The Great Settlement

Long before there was a city named Arkansas City, before Kansas was a state, even before the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock in 1620, the Rayados people had a large and thriving settlement at the confluence of the Walnut and Arkansas Rivers where Arkansas City sits now.

On Monday, March 26th, Sandy Randel, Director of the Cherokee Strip Land Museum and Coordinator for the Etzanoa Conservancy, will speak to the Sumner County Historical and Genealogical Society and share the story of “Etzanoa – the city before Arkansas City” with a video and PowerPoint presentation and answer questions. The meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. at the Wellington Public Library, lower level, 121 W. 7th, Wellington. P program is free; visitors welcome.  For questions or weather cancellation, contact Jane at 620-447-3266 or Sherry at 316-833-6161.

They were hunting for gold…

It was 1601, 417 years ago, when Juan de Oñate, colonial governor of the Santa Fe de Nuevo México province in the Viceroyalty of New Spain set out with approximately 130 Spanish soldiers, a dozen Franciscan priests, servants, scouts, cannons, and weapons to search for gold.
They didn’t find it. 
But according to diaries, eyewitness accounts, and maps from the Conquistadores, they did find herds of “monstrous cattle” that they pronounced “good to eat”, grass so high in places that it “hid a horse,” and when they reached what is now Oklahoma, they found the Escanxaque native people who were nomadic hunters, and enemies of the native people of Etzanoa.

The Escanxaque told the Conquistadores about the “great settlement” called Etzanoa, and then followed Oñate and his troops north to the Great Settlement at the confluence of what is now the Walnut and Arkansas rivers.

There, Oñate and his soldiers found at least 2,000 post and pole, grass-thatched houses seventy to eighty feet in circumference. Houses separated by crops of beans, squash, and maize, houses big enough for eight to ten occupants.
Because of the paint and tattoos on their faces, the Conquistadores called the natives at Etzanoa the “Rayados”, which means “striped” in Spanish.
When Oñate decided to return to Nuevo México, the Escanxaque attacked the troops. Even though they were outnumbered, the Spanish cannons and muskets forced the Escanxaque to take shelter in a rocky gully, leaving behind evidence of the battle. Several of the Escanxaque were killed or wounded. Some of Oñate’s troops were injured, but none were killed. 
The next day, Oñate and his troops began their journey back to New Mexico; they arrived on Nov 24, 1601.

After a new translation of the Spanish records of Oñate’s journey was done in 2013 it helped Dr. Donald Blakeslee, Professor of Anthropology and Archeology at Wichita State University to locate and verify the location of the Great Settlement.

And that battle between the Conquistadores and the Escanxaque left behind cannon and musket balls that helped Dr. Blakeslee verify that this is the site of the Etzanoa village.

How Old Was the Settlement?

They don’t know how long Etzanoa existed prior to 1601, and they aren’t sure how long it was there after 1601, but Randel knows that a town of that size didn’t spring up overnight.
 “We know it was there in 1601,” Randel said., “there would have needed to be quite a bit of things in place to support that many people.”
Currently, the estimated size of Etzanoa at a population of 20,000 puts it second in size only to the 13th Century settlement of Cahokia near St. Louis, but the exact boundaries of the settlement at Etzanoa is still unknown and some suspect that further discoveries may show that Etzanoa is larger than Cahokia.
“The settlement does go north of Arkansas City,” Randel said, “We don’t know how far north it goes.”

How to Get Involved in the Project…

Randel stated that the Etzanoa Conservancy welcomes volunteers and involvement with the project and she will bring information on volunteering and getting involved.  For more information, check out www.ks-schgs.blogspot.com.
 Articles about Etzanoa:

Lost city found: Etzanoa of the great Wichita Nation

Lost City of Etzanoa Found

Etzanoa: The Great Settlement

WSU professor, students continue research on archaeological discovery

 WikiPedia - Rayado Indians

Etzanoa Facebook Page

Searching for Etzanoa

Has a High School Student Found the Mythical City of Etzanoa

The Lost Ancient City of Etzanoa Has Been Hidden in Kansas All This Time

07 November 2017

Newspaper Article - Thief steals Money from old soldier's Stocking

"Took it From His Stocking"

Walnut Valley Times
3 July 1901
Wednesday, Page 3, Column 1

"Took it From His Stocking"
Walnut Valley Times
3 July 1901
Wednesday, Page 3, Column 1

Arkansas City, Kan. July 3 - C. O. Cato, an old soldier from Davis county, IA., 
en route to the new Indian country, was robbed of $327 cash while asleep in 
his wagon here. Cato put the money i his stocking and while he slept a thief 
cut the bottom out of the stocking and took the money.

Old newspapers are fascinating!

07 September 2017

June 23, 1894 - Mayfield Voice
Page 359 - "Mayfield: Then & Now"

Mayfield has been visited by quite a few tramps on their way to join the Coxey Army.

Quite a number of our Mayfield people attended Children's day exercises at Silver Creek.

The Mayfield Voice was published from March 16, 1894, until February 28, 1895.  Subscription price was $1.00 per year in advance, and it was published every Friday by Lyman Naugle. Office of Publication on Washington Avenue,Wellington, Kansas.  Telephone No. 26. 

30 August 2017

June 15, 1894 - Corbin News - page 359, Mayfield Then and Now

June 15, 1894 - Corbin News in the Mayfield Voice
Page 359, Mayfield: Then and Now

Charlie, when you go swimming, don't leave your clothes in the wagon unless you tie your team.
("Mayfield: Then and Now" co-author Elaine Clark's note: I'll bet everyone in Corbin - and many in Mayfield - knew Charlie's last name!)

(Sherry's Note: I love old newspapers!  You never know what you'll find when you turn the page, but small-town news often had cute little tidbits like this!)

The Mayfield Voice was published from March 16, 1894, until February 28, 1895.  Subscription price was $1.00 per year in advance, and it was published every Friday by Lyman Naugle. Office of Publication on Washington Avenue,Wellington, Kansas.  Telephone No. 26. 

06 August 2017

December 24, `1891 – The Sumner County Standard
Page 358 - "Mayfield: Then & Now"

Mr. Editor, we thought to furnish the many readers of the STANDARD a few facts in reference to the productiveness of Osborn township and vicinity of Mayfield, would not be amiss, and following we will give names of farmers from who we have gathered this information.

Sanford McCormick
50 acres of wheat average yield per acre         27 bu
30 acres oats, average per acre                       50 bu
50 acres corn average yield per acre               40 bu

John Baker
60 acres wheat, average yield                          27 bu
40 acres corn average yield                             35 bu

James Daily
50 acres wheat, average yield                          30 bu
50 acres corn average yield                             35 bu

B. P. Brummett
60 acres wheat, average yield                          25 bu
40 acres corn, average yield                            40 bu
 6 acres oats, average yield                              60 bu

Minor Umau
11 acres wheat, average yield                           32 bu
50 acres corn, average yield                             40 bu

W. J. Nunn
300 acres wheat, average yield                          20 bu
45 acres corn, average yield                              40 bu
60 acres oats, average yield                               40 bu

Goodrum Bros
100 acres wheat, average yield                          27 bu
90 acres corn, average yield                              40 bu
100 acres oats, average yield                             40 bu

John Good
90 acres wheat, average yield                             25 bu
35 acres corn, average yield                               45 bu

Alexander Hill
70 wheat, average yield                                      20 bu
35 acres corn, average yield                               45 bu
15 acres oats, average yield                                50 bu

Weeber Bros
115 acres wheat, average yield                            23 bu
15 acres oats, average yield                                30 bu

Ed Threlfall
110 ten acres wheat, average yield                      23 bu
40 acres corn, average yield                               40 bu

Lee Evans           
100 acres wheat, average yield                           27 bu

Raider Bros
45 acres wheat, average yield                             26 bu
18 acres oats, average yield                                62 bu
50 acres corn, average                                       40 bu

15 March 2017

"Women Writers on the Santa Fe Trail" - Saturday, March 18th



March 12, 2017                                     Sherry Kline, 1st Vice President/Programs
Sumner County Historical & Genealogical Society
PH: 316-833-6161;
www.ksschgs.com; www.ks-schgs.blogspot.com

“Women Writers on the Santa Fe Trail"

Wellington –Dr. Leo Oliva, author and former professor of history at Fort Hays State University, is fascinated by 19th century Kansas early settler’s history, Native-American, and military history, and is currently working on a book with Alice Anne Thompson about women who traveled the Santa Fe Trail.

“I’m mostly interested in the 19th century,” Oliva said, “twentieth century seems too recent”

Oliva will present a few of his stories about “Women Writers on the Santa Fe Trail” to members and guests of the Sumner County Historical & Genealogical Society on Saturday, March 18th, at 1:00 p.m. at the Wellington Public Library. Everyone is invited to attend the free program. For information or weather cancellations: President Jane Moore - 620-441-9835 or Vice-President Sherry Kline at 316-833-6161.

Dr. Oliva has been a member of the Kansas Humanities Council Speakers Bureau since 2010. He attended college at Ft. Hays State, received his PhD from the University of Denver, Colorado, and is the author of a dozen books, most about frontier military history (including Soldiers on the Santa Fe Trail and six of the eight fort histories in the Kansas Forts Network series).

“We are working to find stories on all the women that we can,” Oliva said, adding that they are continually finding new stories, many coming from the descendants of those women.

Oliva said that the trail was used by a very diverse group of people: African-American slaves and non-slaves, whites, Native Americans, Mexicans, and more.

According to Oliva, Susan Shelby Magoffin, Kentucky, was granddaughter of Isaac Shelby, the first governor of Kentucky, and traveled the trail in 1846 with her husband’s wagon train.

“There was an African-American woman who served in the Army for two years,” Oliva said.

“We think that she decided she wanted out of the Army because of the poor treatment of African-Americans in the service,” Oliva said, “even the discharge papers don’t state that she was a woman.”

“Another woman served in the Mexican American war and was discharged without any mention of her being a woman,” Oliva said, “she applied for a land warrant and the soldiers testified in her behalf and she got her land grant.”

Marian Sloan Russell traveled the trail five times from the age of 7 to 17, with her “single” mother. Marian’s mother, Eliza Sloan, was married to an Army officer.

According to Oliva, Marian’s grandsons have located two marriage records for Marian’s mother Eliza, but no divorce records. From all evidence, she traveled the trail with her daughter, married and remarried, and - leaving both husbands behind, though not divorcing either, continued to travel the trail. (Possibly to avoid being in the same area as either of her ex-husbands?) Oliva said that she even ran a boarding house at Ft. Hays for a short time.

Lydia Spencer Lane, who was an Army officer’s wife, traveled the trail at least 7 times, Oliva said, and Katie Bowen traveled the trail in 1851, and suffragist and abolitionist Julia Archibald Holmes, traveled the Santa Fe Trail across Kansas Territory to the Rocky Mountains, where she became the first woman to climb Pike’s Peak.

Dr. Oliva is a founding member of the Santa Fe Trail Association and Fort Larned Old Guard, served as editor of the Santa Fe Trail Association Quarterly, Wagon Tracks, for 25 years and writes a weekly newspaper column titled “Our Kansas Heritage.”

Dr. Oliva and his wife Bonita operate the family farm in north-central Kansas.

This talk is being presented thanks to a grant from the Kansas Humanities Council.

19 September 2016

Kansas Farm Bureau Century Farm Program

Monday, September 26th, 2016 
 "The Kansas Farm Bureau Century Farm Program"

Wellington – Sumner County Historical & Genealogical Society will host “The Kansas Farm Bureau Century Farm Program,” a presentation by Helen Norris, Wellington, on Monday, September 26th, at 6:00 p.m.  at Good Taste Chinese Buffet, 1311 E. 16th St., Wellington.  Buffet available from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m.; business meeting at 6:00 p.m.  Everyone is invited to attend the free program. Contact Jane Moore, President, at 620-441-9835 or Sherry Kline, Vice President, at 316-833-6161 for more information.

“There are some very interesting stories included with some of the Century Farm applications,” Norris said, adding that she will share a few from Sumner County, as well as some from across the state.

Norris stated that many of these farms have been in the farm families since early statehood, and she will share a PowerPoint presentation with the group along with her talk, and there will be time for questions and answers.
What are Century Farm Requirements?

According to www.kfb.org, to be eligible in the 2017 program, the current owner/operator must be related to the owner/operator of the farm in 1917 or before.

The farm must have been owned for 100 years within that family, and it must have at least eighty acres of the original farmland. 

How Can You Apply?
The applications are available to print out at www.kfb.org/Get-Involved (click on Century Farm Program). To be considered for the 2017 program, you must submit your application to the Sumner County Farm Bureau by May 15, 2017.

The application asks for the date of the original purchase, and requires that you list the legal of the property and all the owners from the first family purchaser to the current owner. (Information easy to obtain at the courthouse).
The application also has several questions that are not required to be filled out, but that future family historians will appreciate knowing if you do. For more information about the Century Farm program, email Debbie Hargrave hargraved@kfb.org

The farms that qualify will be recognized by the Kansas Farm Bureau and receive a farm sign that designates its Century Farm” status.

According to www.kfb.org, twenty-three Sumner County farms have earned the Century Farm designation, and more than 2500 Kansas farms have qualified since the program’s inception in 2000.  

For more information about “The Kansas Farm Bureau Century Farm Program”
in Wellington, Kansas contact President Jane Moore 620-447-3266 or Vice President Sherry Kline 316-833-6161 or visit www.ks-schgs.blogspot.com.

19 August 2016

August 27th 2016

 “Wichita’s Dockum Drug Store Sit-Ins Make History”

Wellington – The Sumner County Historical & Genealogical Society will host “Wichita’s Dockum Drug Store Sit-Ins Make History,” a video presentation and discussion by Dr. Galyn Vesey, Wichita, on August 27th at 1:00 p.m., at the Good Taste Chinese Buffet, 1311 E. 16th St., Wellington.  Buffet available from 12:00 Noon to 1:00 p.m. The program is free. Visitors are always welcome. Contact Sherry Kline, Vice President of the Sumner County Historical & Genealogical Society at 316-833-6161 for more information.

In the mid 1950’s Galyn Vesey was attending junior high and working in the kitchen at Kress’s.

Vesey said this was an era when blacks sat in the back of the bus and most job opportunities for blacks were for kitchen or janitorial work.

It was a time when young Vesey could work in the restaurant’s kitchen, but was not allowed to eat at that restaurant’s counter.

When Vesey was a twenty-one-year-old Wichita University student and a member of the of the Young Adult Chapter of the NAACP, the Young Adult Chapter decided to address these inequalities.

“Because, see, it was not unusual to be treated shabbily downtown, so our leaders were looking for an activity of a civic nature,” Vesey said.

The group decided to hold a sit-in at the Dockum Drug Store Lunch Counter.  A lunch counter that only served whites. The sit-in was to be a peaceful demonstration during which young black students would sit down at a. lunch counter they had never been allowed to sit at, and politely wait to be served.  

Vesey said that the planning and preparation for the 1958 sit-in began in 1957. Because of violence in other parts of the country, including the treatment of the high school students in Little Rock, and the murder of Emmet Till, Vesey’s group was concerned enough to prepare for anything that might happen.

They prepared by rehearsing all the possible scenarios, each playing a different role.  They were instructed to wear their “Sunday best clothes.” They were told to be polite.

“I went during the day or on Saturday mornings” Vesey said. According to Vesey, twelve to twenty young people, usually students of high school, college, and some of elementary school age, came and took turns sitting at the Dockum Drug Store counter waiting to be served.

“Sometimes if some whites came in and saw what was going on, they would turn around and leave,” Vesey said.

“There were youths whose parents knew they were down there,” Vesey said, “and there were other youths like myself, whose parents didn’t know.”

“My father had the kind of job that if they had known, my father could have lost his job,” Vesey said, “my dad died and never knew what I had done, but my mother lived long enough to attend the banquet in 2006.”

In August of 1958, after approximately two weeks, the sit-in was over when a Dockum Drug Store executive said “Serve them, I’m losing too much money.”

They had no idea when they began that their success would have such far reaching effects. Sit-ins were staged across the nation, and restaurants began to be desegregated.

“Once I got up to Syracuse University, and started reflecting on my life I decided that it needed to be written about,” Vesey said, “when I was working on my PhD, a light came on about all that.”

Now, Vesey is the Project Director for the “Research on Black Wichita” Project, (www.robwks.com), which focuses on black history from 1873 to the mid-1970’s.  

Vesey said that the project will focus on individual interviews, focus groups, and “all the documents that I can find.”

“To make it come alive, I get into the individual adversities that individuals had to deal with,” Vesey said, “sometimes people are in their graves before they are recognized. Now that I look back there were a lot of heroic people in Wichita.”

“I’m proud of what I did. It took some bravery.  We could have been thrown in jail or worse,” Vesey said, “it takes a lot of steps to get someplace and it took a lot of steps to make this a better planet to live on.”

For more information about “Wichita’s Dockum Drug Store Sit-Ins Make History,” in Wellington, Kansas contact President Jane Moore 620-447-3266 or Vice President Sherry Kline 316-833-6161.  Or visit www.ksschgs.com or www.ks-schgs.blogspot.com.