Skip to main content

James P. Davis papers

Call Number: RH MS 662


The papers of James P. Davis are those of a Kansas City, Kansas attorney who served in the State House of Representatives and as County Commissioner for the 2nd District of Wyandotte County.


  • Creation: 1952 - 1983


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 James. P. Davis

James Parker Davis was born July 21, 1921 in Memphis, Tennessee. After attending school in Memphis, Davis received his Bachelor of Science degree from LeMoyne College (Memphis) and his LL.B. degree from Washburn University. After settling in Kansas City, Kansas, Davis served as an Assistant County Attorney from 1951-1969. During that time he also was the special attorney for the Kansas Highway Department (1966-1969) as well as for the Urban Renewal Agency in Kansas City, KS (1969). In 1959, Davis was elected to the Kansas State House of Representatives from the 8th district, which became the 6th district after redistricting, the 30th and the 34th districts. He served as a Representative until his resignation in 1973. That year Davis was appointed County Commissioner of the 2nd District of Wyandotte County; he was then elected to the position in 1974 and reelected in 1978. He served as Commissioner until his death on 22 October 1979.

Davis was active in a number of organizations including the NAACP, Omega Psi Phi, Trouveurs Social Club, and Our Lady St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church. He was a member of various bar associations in Kansas. Davis was also a US Army veteran, having served in World War II.

Davis married Marita Burnett in 1947. The couple had three children, Je Parker, Daphne, and Lezlie.


.75 Linear Feet (2 document cases + 7 folders, 1 oversize folder, 1 oversize box)

Language of Materials


Scope and Contents

The Papers of James P. Davis date from 1952-1983 and are arranged in two series: Career Papers and Personal Papers. Career Papers include clippings, correspondence, and election materials. The Personal Papers includes correspondence and clippings. Folders are arranged alphabetically by topic within each series. Photographs from the James P. Davis Collection are located at RH MS-P 662 and RH MS-P (f) 662. Oversize materials are at RH MS R136.

Series List

The Papers of James P. Davis date from 1952-1983 and are arranged in two series: Career Papers and Personal Papers.

Physical Location

RH MS 662

Physical Location

RH MS-P 662

Physical Location

RH MS-P (f) 662

Physical Location

RH MS R136

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift, Marita Davis, 1988, 1993.

Guide to the James P. Davis Collection
James P. Davis papers
Finding aid prepared by mbw, 2006; revised by, cl 2010; revised by skt, 2010; Finding aid encoded by mbw, 2006; revised by skt, 2006
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Finding aid written in <language encodinganalog="language">English.</language>
Support for the processing of this Collection was provided by the Dana and Sue Anderson African American Collecting Program Endowment Fund.
Finding aid permalink
Preferred citation
James P. Davis Collection, Kansas Collection, RH MS 662, 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