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On offer is a collection of 8 diaries, the earliest is of 1909, 7 diaries are for the period from 1916 to 1921, and the last one is of 1949. Diaries of 1909, 1921, and 1949 have 60 pages each, diaries for 1916 through 1919 are 91 pages each, diary of 1920 is 365 pages and the record book is 152 pages. All diaries are in good condition and 100% complete, except the record book which is 90% complete. The author of 7 of these diaries was William Robert King Jr. of St. Louis, MO. He was the son of William Robert King, a Presbyterian minister and founder of Henry Kendall College, now the University of Tulsa. King Sr. was married and he and his wife had one child - a son also named William Robert King. A reference in the second diary notes King Sr.'s birthday which coincides with other records. A second reference (Sept 1, 1919) records his 24th birthday indicating he was born in 1895. This accords with his and his family's history. William Robert King Jr. was a graduate of Monmouth College and post-graduate in chemistry from the University of Illinois. He worked at the university for a while as an instructor of chemistry, then as a chemical engineer, and was connected with the National Carbide and Chemical Company in Cleveland. The first diary in the collection is written in 1909. It does not appear to have been written by King Jr. The age and experiences of the writer do not match up. The unknown author appears to be teaching in a high school as well as working as a minister: "... Second election for high school [ ]. Disqualified election and serious mistake in the counting ..." [Feb 19, 1909]. He probably writes about elections of school students for a trip to Washington as guests of Post-Dispatch, a major St. Louis newspaper, to see inauguration of President Taft, that were held in February of that year. "Preached this morning on John 1:46 ..." [Feb 28, 1909]. A great many entries referred to him studying but the specifics are not mentioned: "... Studying in A.M. Teachers meeting [ ] at College" [May 31, 1909]. This could in fact belong to King's father, Rev. William Rober King Sr. For part of his career, King served as superintendent of the American Sunday School Union's southwestern office in St. Louis, Missouri. The second diary definitely belongs to King Jr. as he has entered his name in the ID page. Written in 1916, he is attending high school in St. Louis. His entries are filled with references to classes, assignments and family: "Assigned to make up Physics and French exams in March. English Class: 9 - 10' French Class: 10 - 11' Economics Class: 12 - 1" [Feb 5, 1916]; "History lecture. Took French make-up exam - complete failure suppose it means I quit school as I cannot get credit on anything unless I have French ... " [Mar 31, 1916]. In fact, he does graduate and attends in Monmouth College in Monmouth, Ill. He was involved with his church and often participated in activities there: "... Taught class, communion services. Led C.E. consecration services, subject: consecration of time Ps 90: 1-17, Illustrated lecture on Philippines ..." [Apr 2, 1916]. He mentions a number of landmark buildings in St. Louis including the New Central Theatre and the Jefferson Hotel. He also references the 1916 presidential elections: "... race of Wilson and Hughes doubtful ..." [Nov 6, 1916]; " ... Election Wilson vs Hughes at 2 A.M. looks like Hughes Republicans carried Ill" [Nov 7, 1916]; "Election still doubtful looks like Wilson" [ Nov 8, 1916] "... election still doubtful ... claiming fraud" [Nov 9, 1916]; "Wilson seems elected Hurrah! ..." [Nov 10, 1916]. Amongst the many people he references is a girl referred to only as "M". The third diary, 1917, continues with his college life. "M" is still very much a part of it. "M" in fact is 'Marjorie' (Marjorie Scott) who becomes frequently referred to in later years. Eventually, they become engaged and married. WWI is indirectly referenced as well: "... company organized in college to drill every night ... " [Apr 11, 1917]; "... Situation getting critical quickly ... college presidents considering disbanding schools and giving whole time to military training" [Apr 14, 1917]. Throughout the year, he keeps track of his classes and comments on assignments and marks. He is in frequent communication with his father and mother. The fourth diary in 1918 sees him still at Monmouth College. He references the sensational Dawson trial in which John Wesley Knight, a 35-year-old black man, was sentenced to 19 years in Joliet penitentiary for the slaying of William E. Dawson; his wife, Charity and their daughter, 13-year-old Georgia: "Dawson trial most of A.M. State vs John Knight ..." [Jan 29, 1918]; "Down at trial in A.M. ..." [Jan 31, 1918]; "... Dawson trial went to jury ..." [Feb 1, 1918]; "... jury convicted Knight - 19 years ..." [Feb 2, 1918]. Extensive contemporary research suggests that the Dawson murder was the work of a German serial killer named Paul Mueller who travelled the country by rail killing perhaps as many as 100 Americans before returning to Europe, where he may have continued his spree. For those killings, the authors contend that four innocent people were executed, seven were killed by lynch mobs and four - including John Knight-served prison sentences. ?In August, he notes a very special date: "... Red Letter Day. M promised to be my wife" [Aug 28, 1918]. The fifth diary (1919) sees him continue his education at Monmouth. He also becomes a member of Tau Delta Phi ( ) and mentions their activities frequently. ??? He notes president Wilson's visit to St. Louis: "President Wilson in city today speaking tour for League of Nations ..." [Sept 5, 1919]. The sixth diary (1920) sees him continuing his education, at the University of Illinois at Champaign. Most of his entries revolve around university classes, activities with friends and family and his relationship with Marjorie. In December, he takes a major step: "Marjorie and I married by Dad at 10 A.M in church ..." [Dec 28, 1920]. The seventh (1921) continues with his university education and his married life with Marjory. He is working, at least part time and Marjory is working full-time: "M is teaching class often girls for Mrs. Camp this summer ..." [July 10, 1921]; "... notice of appointment as graduate associate in chemistry from Board of Trustees ..." [Aug 8, 1921]; He finishes the year working as an associate at the university in the field of Chemistry. The eighth diary (1949) is part of the collection but was not authored by William Robert King. Records suggest that King died in 1939 at the age of 44. It might have been authored by William Robert King, Sr., who after retirement and until his death in 1951 lived on his farm Church Hill near Kingsport. There are references to Kingsport, TN where both King Sr. & King Jr. are buried: "Good day in old Kingsport …" [Dec 18, 1949]. A number of references are agricultural: "Repairing barn." [Feb 2, 1949]; "Sell pigs..." [Apr 15, 1949]. There is a fascinating, brief reference to international affairs in January: "Pan Asian Conference [ ] Chiang Kai Shek decided to give up presidency of China. President Truman [ ]…" [Jan 28, 1949]. There is a reference to Washington College in Tennessee, where William R. King, Sr. received his degree in divinity in 1890: "Board Meeting Washington College 12:15 …" [Feb 28, 1949]. The author ends the year on a somewhat dispirited note: "This has been an eventful year. ... Dirty politics, financial greed, infidelity of men and women & break up of homes, aftermath of war ..." [Dec 31, 1949]. The last volume is a loose-leaf binder compiled by William Robert King. It is really a collection of lists and data that matter to him. Although undated, the 'Christmas Card' lists begin in 1923 and continue annually until 1941. As noted above, King passed away in 1939 and it appears that most likely his wife Marjorie maintained this particular list for another two years. She later remarried. Other lists include names and birth dates of many other family members, lists of possessions, particularly coins and silver plate, courses studies in university (along with marks) and more. It is interesting that his son, William Robert King III was educated as an architect at the University of Illinois, served in WWII and was present during the D-Day invasion and then later became a Presbyterian minister and missionary. Overall, this is a superb collection of daily notes covering an extensive period of time in early 20th century America. For a genealogist, it is a veritable goldmine. The last volume alone recounts dozens and dozens of names, many associated with Monmouth College. It gives a very clear picture of university education during WWI.
Title: 1909 - 1921 + 1949 SUPER GROUP OF ORIGINAL MANUSCRIPT DIARIES HAND WRITTEN BY A YOUNG MAN  AND ONE BY HIS NOTED FATHER AND FOUNDER OF THE UNIVERSITY OF TULSA
Publisher: MISSOURI ; ILLINOIS; TENNESSEE, 1909
Book Condition: Good
Item: 1.00 Item
Seller ID: 0008177
Keywords: KEYWORDS: HISTORY OF; 20TH CENTURY; PROGRESSIVE ERA; 1900s; 1910s; 1940s; WW1; UNITED STATES; ST. LOUIS; MISSOURI; ILLINOIS; KINGSPORT, TN; TENNESSEE; HAWKINGS COUNTY; AMERICAN EDUCATION OF THE EARLY 20TH CENTURY; PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH; PRESBYTERIAN MINISTERS IN AMERICA; WILLIAM ROBERT KING JR.; WILLIAM ROBERT KING, SR.; MONMOUTH COLLEGE; UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS; TAU DELTA PHI (???); DAWSON TRIAL 1918; JOHN WESLEY KNIGHT; SERIAL KILLER PAUL MUELLER; CHIANG KAI SHEK; WOODROW WILSON, LEAGUE OF NATIONS; D-DAY; MONMOUTH COLLEGE ALUMNI; EDUCATION IN EARLY 20TH CENTURY AMERICA; COLLEGE LIFE IN 1910s AMERICA; MURDER TRIALS IN EARLY 20TH CENTURY AMERICA; WOODROW WILSON VISITS ST. LOUIS; AMERICANA, HANDWRITTEN, MANUSCRIPT, DOCUMENT, LETTER, AUTOGRAPH, WRITER, HAND WRITTEN, DOCUMENTS, SIGNED, LETTERS, MANUSCRIPTS, DIARY, DIARIES, JOURNALS, PERSONAL HISTORY, SOCIAL HISTORY, HISTORICAL, HOLOGRAPH, WRITERS, AUTOGRAPHS, PERSONAL, MEMOIR, MEMORIAL, ANTIQUITÉ, CONTRAT, VÉLIN, DOCUMENT, MANUSCRIT, PAPIER ANTIKE, BRIEF, PERGAMENT, DOKUMENT, MANUSKRIPT, PAPIER OGGETTO D'ANTIQUARIATO, ATTO, VELINA, DOCUMENTO, MANOSCRITTO, CARTA ANTIGÜEDAD, HECHO, VITELA, DOCUMENTO, MANUSCRITO, PAPEL