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Holsinger and Rose family papers

Call Number: RH MS 663


The Holsinger and Rose families immigrated to the United States in the 1700s. The collection reflects their activity in the Rosedale, Kansas, area during the late 19th and early 20th centuries by means of correspodence, poetry, newspaper clippings, and brief biographies, which address topics ranging from accounts of the Civil War, Kansan identity, politics and Christianity.


  • Creation: 1883 - 1933


Conditions Governing Access

No access restriction

Conditions Governing Use

Spencer Library staff may determine use restrictions dependent on the physical condition of manuscript materials.

Biography of Frank Holsinger

Frank Holsinger was born April 3, 1836 in Bedford County, Pennsylvania to George and Susan (Myers) Holsinger, of Pennsylvania German Dunkard descent. He went to Mt. Morris Seminary in Illinois in 1855 to study but, becoming interested in the populary soveignty issue and the free state cause, went to Kansas in 1857.

Holsinger staked a claim a few miles south of Lawrence, Douglas County, Kansas, and remained in Kansas fighting for the anti-slavery cause for a couple years before heading back east before the Civil War started. When war broke out, he initially enlisted with an Ohio company, where he was then residing; he transferred to the Pennsylvania Reserves.

Holsinger fought at Antietam, was wounded at Fredericksburg, and organized the 19th U.S. Colored Troops. He was wounded again at Petersburg, more severely this time, and never regained the use of his right arm. He was promoted to major at this point.

Holsinger went south to Texas, overseeing a Freedmen's Bureau there. After mustering out of the military in 1867, he went back to Pennsylvania to marry Frances (Fannie) Long. They moved to Kansas, settling this time in Wyandotte County, near what would become Rosedale, Kansas.

The Holsingers had 6 children who survived to adulthood: Gerald, Clarence V., George, Maude (Holsinger) Wilson, Edna Frances, and Mary Reichard (Holsinger) Rose, who married George Rose, whose family had come to Kansas from New York in the early 1870s and settled in Wyandotte County. George and Mary Rose's children included Helen, Sibyl Frances, Edith Mildred (Rose) Ruble, George Edmund, and Franklin Thomas (F.T.R.).

Holsinger became a staunch prohibitionist, was a strong supporter of education, and helped found the Kansas State Horticultural Society, serving at various times as both its president and treasurer.

Frank Holsinger died January 2, 1916.


.75 Linear Feet (3 boxes + 1 oversize box)

Language of Materials


Physical Location

RH MS 663

Physical Location

RH MS Q138

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift, Roland Ruble, 2005; 1858/1859 diary of Frank Holsinger purchased from Mrs. Hudson's Fine Books, 2013.



Guide to the Holsinger and Rose Families Collection
Holsinger and Rose family papers
Finding aid prepared by rlf, 2006; revised by cl, 2010. Finding aid encoded by rlf, 2006; revised by mwh, 2017.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Finding aid written in<language encodinganalog="language">English.</language>
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Preferred citation
Holsinger and Rose family papers, RH MS 663, Kenneth Spencer Research Library, University of Kansas

Repository Details

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

1450 Poplar Lane
Lawrence KS 66045-7616 United States