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Mary S. Learnard collection

Call Number: RH MS P803


This small collection purportedly relates to early Lawrence, Kansas resident Mary S. (Mrs. Oscar E.) Learnard, who was a daughter of Lawrence pioneer Shalor Eldridge. Included is an unattributed typescript describing Lawrence's early history. Also included is the record of an account (entries dated 1871-1872) with Iowa City, Iowa businessman Justin DeWitt Bowersock who later moved to Lawrence, where he was prominent in business and in state and local politics. The Iowa City account with Bowersock is that of his future mother-in-law, Mrs. James H. Gower.


  • Creation: 1871-1875, 1938


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 Mary S. Learnard

Mary S. Learnard was born in Massachusetts in January 1842 to Shalor Winchell and Mary R. (Norton) Eldridge. Her father, a railroad contractor, relocated to Kansas City in 1854, where he bought the American House, operated as a free state hotel. In 1856, he began operating the Free State Hotel at Lawrence, which was twice burned by pro-slavery factions and rebuilt by Eldridge. In 1862, Mary Eldridge married Oscar Eugene Learnard, a member of the first territorial legislature of Kansas and one of the first state senators.


3 folders ; 25 x 38 cm.

Language of Materials


Physical Location

RH MS P803

Guide to the Mary S. Learnard Collection
Mary S. Learnard collection
Finding aid prepared by mh, 2007 Finding aid encoded by mh, 2007
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Finding aid written in English.
Finding aid permalink
Preferred citation
Mary S. Learnard Collection, RH MS P803, 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