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William Charles Chamberlin papers

Call Number: RH MS 1080


This collection provides some information about the Chamberlin family and its migration west during the 19th century, particularly William Charles Chamberlin's branch that moved to Osage County, Kansas. The collection includes William Charles Chamberlin's diary for the years 1882-1883, including a transcript; a family history of John and Lomira Chamberlin compiled in 2007; and source material. The source material includes excerpts from an account book involving Chamberlin's grandfather who lived in Massachusetts, copies of family documents from the 19th century, Civil War-era artifacts from Chamberlin's father, some family correspondence from the 20th century, and information about the family's land ownership in Kansas.


  • Creation: 1834 - 2007


Conditions Governing Access

No access restrictions.

Conditions Governing Use

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

Biography of William Charles Chamberlin

William Charles Chamberlin was born in Beaver Dam Township in Dodge County, Wisconsin September 17, 1857 to Charles Lorum Chamberlin and Sarah E. Hurd. Charles L. moved his family to Ridgeway Township in Osage County, Kansas in 1866. While Charles and Sarah left Kansas in 1905 for points further west, their son remained a Kansas resident the rest of his life.

On October 30, 1884 William Charles married Harriet “Hattie” C. Ellis, daughter of John and Sarah Ellis, in Afton, Iowa. Harriet had been born in Peoria, IL on June 4, 1858. The couple had five sons: Walter (died at 6 months of age), Fred, Frank, John, and Ralph.

William passed away in August 1941 in Overbrook, Kansas at the age of 89. Harriet (Ellis) Chamberlin passed away on October 11, 1948 in Topeka, Kansas at the age of 90.


.5 Linear Feet (2 document cases + 2 oversize folders)

Language of Materials


Physical Location

RH MS 1080

Physical Location

RH MS 1336

Physical Location

RH MS Q390

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gifts, Vernon and Marilyn Chamberlin, 2007 and 2013.

Guide to the William Charles Chamberlin Collection
William Charles Chamberlin papers
Finding aid prepared by mt, 2007; revised by eml, 2014; revised by mhr, 2015
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Finding aid written in English.
Finding aid permalink
Preferred citation
William Charles Chamberlin Collection, RH MS 1080, 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