Inside Spencer: The KSRL Blog

Throwback Thursday: Soccer Edition

July 12th, 2018

Each week we’ll be posting a photograph from University Archives that shows a scene from KU’s past. We’ve also scanned more than 34,800 images from KU’s University Archives and made them available online; be sure to check them out!

Who’s excited for the World Cup final this weekend?

Photograph of a KU soccer player kicking a ball, 1986-1987

KU soccer player kicking a ball, 1986-1987. University Archives Photos.
Call Number: RG 66/27 1986/1987 Practice Prints: Athletic Department: Soccer (Photos).
Click image to enlarge (redirect to Spencer’s digital collections).

This photo appears to have been taken at the Shenk Recreational Sports Complex, looking north. Moore Hall – home of the Kansas Geological Survey – is prominently visible in the background on the right.

Caitlin Donnelly
Head of Public Services

World War I Letters of Milo H. Main: July 9-15, 1918

July 9th, 2018

In honor of the centennial of World War I, this is the second series in which we follow the experiences of one American soldier: twenty-five year old Milo H. Main, whose letters are held in Spencer’s Kansas Collection. Each Monday we’ll post a new entry featuring selected letters from Milo to his family from that following week, one hundred years after he wrote them.

Milo Hugh Main was born in or near Pittsfield, Illinois, on November 21, 1892 to William and Rose Ella Henry Main. The family moved to Argonia, Sumner County, Kansas, in 1901. After his mother died in 1906, Milo remained in Argonia with his father and his two sisters Gladys (b. 1890) and June (b. 1899). His youngest sister Fern (b. 1905) was sent to live with relatives in Illinois.

As Milo reported to the Kansas State Historical Society in 1919, after graduating from high school he worked as a store clerk. He resigned in July 1917 and took a position at Standard Oil Company, possibly co-managing a gas station in Argonia.

Milo entered into military service on September 21, 1917. He served as a wagoner – a person who drives a wagon or transports goods by wagon – in Battery F, 130th Field Artillery. He was stationed at Camp Funston (September-October 1917) and Camp Doniphan (October 1917-May 1918). On May 19, 1918, he boarded the ship Ceramic in New York City and departed for Europe.

Image of Milo H. Main's letter to his family, July 15, 1918

Image of Milo H. Main's letter to his family, July 15, 1918

Image of Milo H. Main's letter to his family, July 15, 1918

Image of Milo H. Main's letter to his family, July 15, 1918

Image of Milo H. Main's letter to his family, July 15, 1918 Image of Milo H. Main's letter to his family, July 15, 1918

July 15th 1918.

Somewhere in France.

Dear Father and Sisters:-

This finds us (the Argonia bunch at a new training camp. We all are well and located nearer to each other than ever before.

I hated to leave the O.M. at the other camp for, we the O.M. force sure had a fine time during our stay. But (the O.M. bunch) we are together on same detail here. The night before we left, the lady of the café gave us, two cooks, a waiter and my self a seven course dinner, French style to be sure and some feed I want you to know with plenty of wine. I was carrying her pocket book before I left. Don’t misconstrue that. I carried it at meal time. She wants me to spend my furloughs at her home, but latest dope [inside information] out will have us in the States before I get a leave.

Am enclosing a letter which Ray Flory* sent me at Doniphan and it was then forwarded over here again. I have not heard directly from him over here, but am expecting a letter daily. Don’t know whether he is in England or here.

Received four letter from you last Thurs. dated 5/31, 5/28, 6/14, and 6/17. We get mail about twice each week.

You spoke of the French girls. Yes, some very beautiful but taken as a bunch, they are no comparison to the Kansas girls.

Sure a bunch of Sumner Co. boys answering the call to the colors, but they are to late to see any active service.

Sure looks good to see a real American girl in the Y.M.C.A.s and the boys who have been in the hospitals say that the Red Cross (American) nurses treat a Sammie** as a big brother from home.

Pardon me for writing with a pencil, but my time is limited this Monday evening as I spent the afternoon pressing a pair of O.D. [olive drab] pants. I am getting very neglectful about writing but enjoy a few lines from home as never before and it is real interesting to watch we boys from Argonia exchange letters to try and find some thing of interest our folks failed to mention. But this way we get it all.

Glad Bernice received the allotment at last. Tell them all “hello” for me.

Wheat and oats are ripe here. The grain crop is fine and talk about golden fields of grain. I saw them here. The grain is dead ripe before they commence cutting with their arm strong binders known as cradles in the U.S.A. years ago. The largest field I have seen was a 10 acre oat field. They farm every square foot down here in southern France, but am told that in northern France it is much more like the U.S. method.

Yes, June [Milo’s sister], would be glad to receive some of your kodak pictures, any time, but thanks for the cigarettes as I never use them, only smoke a cigar now and then. And can get them at the Y’s’.

About my F. & B. Life Ins. just pay the quarterly premiums and extend the war risk loans if any. There will be no Masonic dues for you to pay.

Will close for to nite.

Trusting all are well and prosperous at home

I am your son & bro.,
Milo H. Main

*Milo mentioned Ray Flory in his June 2nd letter. Biographical information about him can be found in that blog post.

**“Sammie” or “Sammy” was British slang for a U.S. soldier in World War I; it was a reference to Uncle Sam.

 

Meredith Huff
Public Services

Emma Piazza
Public Services Student Assistant

Wayback Wednesday: Lady Liberty Edition

July 4th, 2018

Each week we’ll be posting a photograph from University Archives that shows a scene from KU’s past. We’ve also scanned more than 34,800 images from KU’s University Archives and made them available online; be sure to check them out!

Photograph of a patriotic float in a Kansas Relays parade, 1950s

A patriotic float in the Kansas Relays parade, 1950s. University Archives Photos.
Call Number: RG 71/2 1950s Negatives: Student Activities: Kansas Relays (Photos).
Click image to enlarge (redirect to Spencer’s digital collections).

This picture was taken on Massachusetts Street at Ninth, looking south. The corner building on the right is Weavers Department Store; the spire in the background is the Douglas County Courthouse.

Zoom in to see the words on the sashes being worn by the four seated women. They refer to President Franklin Roosevelt’s “four freedoms,” articulated in his Annual Message to Congress (State of the Union Address) on January 6, 1941: the freedom of speech, the freedom of worship, the freedom from want, and the freedom from fear.

Caitlin Donnelly
Head of Public Services

The Liberty Boys of “76”: Dime Novel set during the American Revolution

July 3rd, 2018

Cover of Issue of the Liberty Boys featuring the story "The Liberty Boys Saving the Colors OR Dick Slater's Bravest Deed" (July 28, 1911)

Harry Judson bore the colors, and was the proudest boy in all the troop as he advanced, waving them over the heads of the brave boys who followed…. Suddenly a shot struck Harry and he was seen to fall, the flag trailing upon the ground…. Dick flew across the open space toward Harry, who was beginning to revive, not having been killed, but only wounded…. It was Dick Slater’s bravest deed, and now both redcoats and Liberty Boys cheered as he ran toward the wall, bearing Harry across his shoulders and waving the colors triumphantly. 

Quotation from p. 19 of  The Liberty Boys of “76,”  No. 552, (July 28, 1911), New York: Frank Tousey Publisher, 1911.  Spencer Research Library Call#: Children 6112.  Cover of that issue pictured above.  Click image to enlarge.

The term “dime novel” began as a serial title. Beadle’s Dime Novels (1860-1874) were small paper books, published in a series and sold for ten cents each. They laid the groundwork for what would come to be known as the dime novel. Every Beadle’s edition contained a fast-paced, fictional story with an exaggerated, melodramatic plot, and included a beautifully illustrated cover. Rival publishers soon began to produce their own versions of dime novels, resulting in an explosion of cheaply produced fiction in the latter half of the nineteenth century, and into the twentieth century, most of it aimed at young, male readers. Among them was The Liberty Boys of “76.”

From 1901 to 1925, young readers could follow the adventures of the Liberty Boys. Published every week by Frank Tousey, this dime novel told the stories of a fictional group of young Patriots that consisted of up to 100 members, all doing their part in the war for American independence. Their leader in every issue was Captain Dick Slater. The stories were ghost written by Cecil Burleigh and Stephen Angus Douglas Cox, under the pen name of Harry Moore. The authors drew heavily on Benson John Lossing’s Pictorial Field-Book of the Revolution for their research, and as a result, many historical figures appear in the stories, and most of the stories take place during actual battles and events of the Revolution. Thomas Worth, who also was an illustrator for Harper’s Weekly, produced many of the illustrated covers. Ironically, and sadly, as popular as the covers of dime novels became, the identity of most of the cover artists is unknown.

Passage describing the Battle of White Marsh in Lossing's Pictorial Field-Book of the Revolution Vol. 2, p.115   Cover of the issue of The Liberty Boys of "76" treating the Battle of White March (August 30, 1912)

On the left is a page from Lossing’s book, Pictorial Field-Book of the Revolution, describing events of the Battle of White Marsh, part of the Philadelphia campaign of 1777 from a copy contributed to the Internet Archive by the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (Vol. 2, p. 115). On the right is the fictional account of the Liberty Boys’ participation at White Marsh, no. 609 (August 30, 1912), call #: Children 6112. Click Images to enlarge.

Cover of Issue of the Liberty Boys featuring the story "The Liberty Boys and Widow Moore OR the Fight at Creek Bridge" (July 21, 1911)    Cover of the issue of The Liberty Boys containing "The Liberty Boys and Emily Geiger; or, After the Tory Scouts" (November 30, 1917)

While most of the stories were about the Liberty boys, a lot of them were about girls and women. The novel on the right is based on the story of Emily Geiger, an actual Patriot hero. Call#: Children 6112.  Click images to enlarge.

Cover of Issue of the Liberty Boys featuring the story "The Liberty Boys' Greatest Battle; Or Foiling the Read Coats" (July 12, 1912)    Cover of Issue of the Liberty Boys featuring the story "The Liberty Boys' Setback; Or Defeated but not Disgraced" (June 27, 1913)

Two more examples of The Liberty Boys of “76.” Call#: Children 6112.  Click images to enlarge.

The Liberty Boys of “76” provided children with entertaining reading material, but also slipped in a history lesson at the same time. This approach is still used in today’s historical fiction for children.

The publishers liked to keep their audiences coming back for more tales of adventure.  The July 28th, 1911 issue whose cover is featured at the top of this post ended with the following teaser:  “Next week’s issue will contain “THE LIBERTY BOYS’ SWAMP ANGELS; OR, OUT WITH MARION AND HIS MEN.” 

Kathy Lafferty
Public Services

SOURCES CONSULTED:

Anderson, Vicki. The Dime Novel in Children’s Literature. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers, 2005.

Cox, J. Randolph. The Dime Novel Companion: A Source Book. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press, 2000.

Lossing, Benson J. The Pictorial Field-Book of the Revolution. New York:  Harper & Brothers Publishers, 1860.

Moore, Harry. The Liberty Boys of “76.” New York, New York: Frank Tousey, Publisher, 1901-1925. Kenneth Spencer Research Library, Call Number: Children 6112.

World War I Letters of Milo H. Main: July 2-8, 1918

July 2nd, 2018

In honor of the centennial of World War I, this is the second series in which we follow the experiences of one American soldier: twenty-five year old Milo H. Main, whose letters are held in Spencer’s Kansas Collection. Each Monday we’ll post a new entry featuring selected letters from Milo to his family from that following week, one hundred years after he wrote them.

Milo Hugh Main was born in or near Pittsfield, Illinois, on November 21, 1892 to William and Rose Ella Henry Main. The family moved to Argonia, Sumner County, Kansas, in 1901. After his mother died in 1906, Milo remained in Argonia with his father and his two sisters Gladys (b. 1890) and June (b. 1899). His youngest sister Fern (b. 1905) was sent to live with relatives in Illinois.

As Milo reported to the Kansas State Historical Society in 1919, after graduating from high school he worked as a store clerk. He resigned in July 1917 and took a position at Standard Oil Company, possibly co-managing a gas station in Argonia.

Milo entered into military service on September 21, 1917. He served as a wagoner – a person who drives a wagon or transports goods by wagon – in Battery F, 130th Field Artillery. He was stationed at Camp Funston (September-October 1917) and Camp Doniphan (October 1917-May 1918). On May 19, 1918, he boarded the ship Ceramic in New York City and departed for Europe.

In this week’s letter, Milo describes French women and expresses his desire to visit Spain before leaving Europe and returning home to Kansas.

 

Image of Milo H. Main's letter to his family, July 7, 1918 Image of Milo H. Main's letter to his family, July 7, 1918

Image of Milo H. Main's letter to his family, July 7, 1918

Image of Milo H. Main's letter to his family, July 7, 1918

July 7th 1918

Dear Father and Sisters:-

This is a beautiful Sunday afternoon, warm enough for a June day in the States.

We served lunch at 1:P.M. to-day and nothing more doing until 6:30 dinner. After dinner I am going to ride a bicycle down to see Warlow and the bunch. The distance being about 5 kilometers from here.

Sure have the best of roads here, but their course is a winding one, no section cross roads; but find signs at every turn.

Fishing and bicycling are the sports of the season here. But the bunch from Camp Doniphan take more to “promenading” or walking with the many fair mademoiselles. We being the first American Soldiers in this section of France, we seem very attractive to them.

Well, the Allies are romping on the Dutch [Germans] now and the dope [inside information] is, “we will be back in the States within 6 months.” But I hope to have the pleasure of visiting Spain before my return. It is not every year that we have the opportunity to see these foreign lands and I want to go around the “globe” and take them all in if possible.

We had Regimental Sunday School just across the street this A.M. Arthur Knox and Bugler Hess* from South Haven [Sumner County, Kansas] were over. Most all natives are Catholics that I have seen and the church bells ring almost constantly.

The boys have been powdering the girls up here this afternoon. They don’t “compra” (understand) the art of using war paint [makeup] like the American girls. They also wonder why we “Yanks” shave and manicure our nails every day. We are entirely to “Sissy” in their estimation.

Will close for this afternoon as I don’t want to miss my “beauty sleep” before dinner.

Hoping all are well, which we are. I am

yours most truly
your son and bro.
Wag. Milo H. Main

Bat. F. 130 F. A.
American E. F.
France.

*These two soldiers appear to have been Milo’s neighbors. According to his World War I draft registration card, Arthur Miller Knox was born in Nardin, Oklahoma, on September 19, 1895. Bugler Hess was likely Claude Homer Hess. According to his World War I draft registration card, he was born in Mannington, West Virginia, on October 3, 1895. In 1917, Knox and Hess were farming in Sumner County, Kansas.

 

Meredith Huff
Public Services

Emma Piazza
Public Services Student Assistant