Displaying 1 - 20 of 41

Letter from John T. Harding to Governor Lloyd C. Stark, discussing corruption in the city and county government, as well as the local police department. He tells Stark that until he enacts new laws, "Kansas City will be at the mercy of the Organization. The Police Department is their gun; as long as they have it, they will make us step around." Harding also suggests that the Pendergast Machine has control over nearly every aspect of the city, "except the sewer system," and indicates that he believes most policemen are good and only acting on orders from above.

May 5th 1939

Letter from J. R. Morgan to Governor Lloyd C. Stark regarding Stark's work cleaning up Kansas City and its police department. He describes Captain Dougherty at Station #4 as "crooked as any man that ever walked the face of the earth."

June 3rd 1939

Letter from George E. Kimball to Governor Lloyd C. Stark, discussing corruption in public service. Kimball identifies himself as "a former judge of the Jackson County Court, a former City Comtroller of Kansas City, and a Republican candidate for Mayor of Kansas in 1930." He writes to recommend Fred H. Carlson as trustworthy, "clean in his private life as well as his public service," and "highly in favor of taking the police department out of the hands of the corrupt political machine here in Kansas City."

June 8th 1939

Draft of an editorial for True Detective Mysteries, a true crime magazine, about the political corruption in Kansas City and how it is being brought down.

Press release containing the test of a statement given by William Hirth, publisher of the Missouri Farmer and president of the Missouri Farmers' Association, regarding the state Democratic convention. Hirth reports that the recent "convention in St. Louis was the most shameful gathering of its kind in the history of Missouri," and describes animosity between Clark-Pendergast forces and Governor Lloyd C. Stark.

April 21st 1940

Letter from Charles E. Ellis, one of Kansas City's 12th Ward election judges, to Governor Lloyd C. Stark, concerned about threatened violence against poll workers who don't obey the Pendergast machine in upcoming elections, and requesting military protection due to distrust in the police. He reports that when he acted as an election judge, that he "was forcibly ejected by two North End Ruffians" when he didn't obey a Democratic precinct captain.

February 20th 1938

Letter signed "A Kansas Citian" to Governor Lloyd C. Stark, requesting assistance in ensuring honest elections in Kansas City by protecting voters, judges, and clerks.

March 22nd 1938

Letter signed "A booster" to Governor Lloyd C. Stark, concerned about the lack of law enforcement anticipated at the March 29 election and requesting the presence of National Guard troops to aid in election security and safety. He thinks that would provide "a source of Security to the election workers & would have a bearing on the way lots of citizens would vote."

March 24th 1938

Letter from Bessie Peppard, to Governor Lloyd C. Stark, describing local women in her political organization being threatened by city employees.

March 25th 1938

Letter from Fred C. Reynolds, former election judge and policeman, to Governor Lloyd C. Stark, suggesting that state troopers be used to protect the upcoming elections, because "I do not think the police can handle it."

March 29th 1938

Pamphlet describing how Pendergast, "King of Kansas City, Emperor of Missouri," and his machine gained power in Kansas City and its role in statewide election fraud.


Letter from L. E. Myers to Governor Lloyd C. Stark, stating that Jackson County prosecutor W. W. Graves is corrupt, and accusing him letting rapists and thieves go free in a case for a bribe.

February 15th 1940

An anonymous letter praising Stark for his efforts to dismantle the Pendergast machine.

April 10th 1939

Anonymous letter implicating the Kansas City Police Department in voting irregularities and that state control of the department is what enabled fairer elections.

Letter from John E. Robertson to Guy B. Park regarding violence and election fraud taking place at a March 6th primary election.

March 13th 1934

Letter from Rich Correll to Governor Park referencing an attached editorial which excoriates the Kansas City Star for its supposed anti-Democratic leanings.

April 20th 1934

Letter from Lewis Goodson to Ralph Lozier hoping for Lozier's and Tom Pendergast's assistance in keeping his job.

April 1st 1932

Letter from Special Agent R. C. Lynn regarding his investigation into Otto P. Higgins, Inmate #55996-L. Lynn argues that Higgins was appointed to his post as director of the Kansas City Police department "over the objections of Mr. T. J. Pendergast and the late Mr. H. F. McElroy, and was merely 'tolerated' by Pendergast while serving in that role.

November 6th 1939

Transcript of the parole hearing for Otto P. Higgins, Inmate #55996-L, before the Judge T. Webber Wilson. Wilson questions Higgins about his crime of income tax evasion, his work and personal history, and his plans for work should he be paroled.

July 17th 1940

Report containing information received from an undercover informant on counterfeiting and narcotics and liquor distribution stemming from a group in Kansas City during the years 1943, 1944, and 1945. The informant asserts that the name individuals are still engaging in the same activities at the time of her report.

September 11th 1950


Civil War on the Western Border: The Missouri-Kansas Conflict,1855-1865.
The Pendergast Years, Kansas City in the Jazz Age & Great Depression.
KC History, Missouri Valley Special Collections at the Kansas City Public Library.