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G.W. Fry correspondence

Call Number: RH MS 1149


The G.W. Fry Collection contains the 1885 to 1896 correspondence of Ohio resident George W. Fry regarding his Butler County, Kansas landholdings at El Dorado. Fry's letters and financial records describe improvements made on his Butler County lands, his pursuit of railway access and a depot, successes and failures in crop production, and his hardships in defense of lawsuits by a tenant.


  • Creation: 1885 - 1896


Conditions Governing Access

No access restrictions

Conditions Governing Use

No restrictions Spencer Library staff may determine use restrictions dependent on the physical condition of manuscript materials.

Biography of G. W. Fry

George W. Fry was born in 1838 in Jackson County, Ohio to Isaac and Hannah (Wyatt) Fry. He became a schoolteacher and, in 1885, while living in Vinton County, Ohio, Fry partnered with Hiram S. Robb and G. W. Washburn, forming G. W. Fry & Company for the purpose of land investment at El Dorado in Butler County, Kansas. Fry's investments necessitated his extended stays at El Dorado, not only for purposes of land oversight and improvements, including advocacy for railway access, but also for legal defense against prolonged lawsuits brought by one of his tenants. From 1887 to 1889, Fry's Ohio residence was at Adelphi in Ross County. In early 1890, he lived at Wheelersburg in Scioto County, but returned to Ross County later that same year. He remained a resident of Ohio throughout his life, dying in Ross County when more than ninety years old.


.25 Linear Feet (1 box)

Language of Materials


Scope and Contents

These papers of Ohio resident G. W. Fry contain Fry's 1885 to 1896 correspondence regarding his landholdings near El Dorado in Butler County, Kansas. Fry's business correspondence is chiefly with his investment partners, Hiram S. Robb and G. W. Washburn; with adjacent Butler County landholder J. C. Tomlinson of Atchison, Kansas; with his Butler County tenants, and with El Dorado attorneys defending him against a prolonged tenant lawsuit.

The correspondence reflects the various Ohio locations at which Fry taught school as well as the periods of his lengthy stays at El Dorado. Included are Fry's El Dorado letters to his wife Ella; letters from his son Charles and brother George of Ohio; and letters from his sister Rebecca Fry Kruger at El Dorado--eager to quit the hardships of Kansas farm life and return to Ohio. With Fry's correspondence are handwritten financial statements of expenditures for his Butler County land improvements and notices of Butler County court actions. Collection arrangement is chronological.

Physical Location

RH MS 1149

Guide to the G. W. Fry Collection
G.W. Fry correspondence
Finding aid prepared by mh, 2008; Finding aid encoded by mh, 2008
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Finding aid written in <language encodinganalog="language">English.</language>
Finding aid permalink
Preferred citation
G. W. Fry Collection, Kansas Collection, RH MS 1149, Kenneth Spencer Research Library, University of Kansas Libraries

Repository Details

Part of the University of Kansas. Kenneth Spencer Research Library Repository

1450 Poplar Lane
Lawrence KS 66045-7616 United States