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A petition in equity and attached exhibits for the case of T. J. Pendergast Wholesale Liquor Company, Plaintiff, vs. Shrader P. Howell, Federal Prohibition Director of Missouri, Defendant. In this petition, T. J. Pendergast Wholesale Liquor Company asks the court to settle a dispute with Howell, who issued the company an order “that [their liquor] permit… is revoked and canceled.” The petitioner reaffirms “that it at all times in good faith conformed to the provisions of the National Prohibition Act.”

Date: 
December 3rd 1920

A subpoena in chancery for the case of T. J. Pendergast Wholesale Liquor Company, Plaintiff, vs. Shrader P. Howell, Federal Prohibition Director of Missouri, Defendant. This subpoena commands Howell to be present at the U.S. District Court in Kansas City on December 23, 1920 to answer for the claims made by the T. J. Pendergast Wholesale Liquor Company.

Date: 
December 6th 1920

An answer to the petition in equity for the case of T. J. Pendergast Wholesale Liquor Company, Plaintiff, vs. Shrader P. Howell, Federal Prohibition Director of Missouri, Defendant. In this answer, Howell denies the plaintiff’s claims and “prays that the decision and order of the defendant as said Prohibition Director be affirmed and that plaintiff’s petition be dismissed at plaintiff’s cost.”

Date: 
December 23rd 1920

One motion and two orders for the case of T. J. Pendergast Wholesale Liquor Company, Plaintiff, vs. Shrader P. Howell, Federal Prohibition Director of Missouri, Defendant. In these documents, the plaintiff motions to reinstate the case in equity and the court orders the same.

Date: 
January 27th 1922

Letter signed "Your Friend" to Governor Lloyd C. Stark, reporting that Pendergast's influence (namely liquor sales and gambling) stretches across the state line into Missouri, and encloses a newspaper clipping on that subject.

Date: 
July 20th 1938

Letter from John T. Harding to L. H. Forman, discussing anti-Clark/Douglas circulars being "thrown into the river" in St. Louis.

Date: 
August 2nd 1938

Citizens' League Bulletin issue with the main article entitled "King of Kansas City, Emperor of Missouri" about the corrupt activities of Boss Tom Pendergast of Kansas City.

Date: 
March 6th 1937

Pamphlet written by Ewing Young Mitchell, former Assistant Secretary of Commerce in Franklin D. Roosevelt administration's first term. He asserts "[t]he first nomination for United States Senator of Harry S. Truman was stolen," and proceeds to argue that point. The Pendergast machine is described as "the most corrupt, the most brazen, gang of thieves who ever looted an American city," and describes the Pendergasts' businesses' activities and obstructions around the city.

Date: 
October 6th 1944

Letter from Ewing Young Mitchell, Jr. to R. E. Joyce on March 24, 1934. Mitchell inquires if it is true that Thomas J. Pendergast recently received a license to distill spirits.

Date: 
March 24th 1934

Letter from R. E. Joyce to Ewing Young Mitchell, Jr. on March 26, 1934. After Mitchell inquires if Thomas J. Pendergast received a license to distill spirits, Joyce clarifies that the Pendergast Wholesale Liquor Co. received a permit to rectify (purify) previously distilled spirits.

Date: 
March 26th 1934

Blank letterhead for T.J. Pendergast Wholesale Liquor Co. at 525-527 Delaware Street, Kansas City, Missouri.

Blank order form for the T.J. Pendergast Wholesale Liquor Co. at 525-527 Delaware Street, Kansas City, Missouri.

Interrogatories to Defendant City Beverage Company in Equity Case No. 5532: Rhea Graef, Plaintiff vs. City Beverage Company, et al., Defendants. The document includes 39 sets of questions "to be answered by an officer or agent of the City Beverage Company." Part of the document includes inquires as to City Beverage Company's business connections to the T. J. Pendergast Wholesale Liquor Company. The litigant asks that all answers be "limited to the period between January 1, 1936, and May 4, 1948."

Date: 
May 13th 1949

Transcript of testimony given by Thomas J. Pendergast Jr. in the office of the Intelligence Unit of the Internal Revenue Service at 1301 Oak Street, Kansas City, Missouri. Internal Revenue Agent P. J. McGrath asks various questions related to Thomas J. Pendergast Jr.'s finances starting in 1932.

Date: 
April 18th 1939

Correspondence from Thomas Pendergast Jr. to Margaret Truman Daniel, likely dated after the 1973 publication of her biography about her father, Harry S. Truman. It is unclear if the note was ever delivered or if it remained in Pendergast Jr.'s possession. In it, Pendergast Jr. accuses Harry Truman and James M. Pendergast of betraying his father.

Letter from Miss Reta Walters accusing Harry Truman of being in league with Tom Pendergast and providing evidence to support her claim. She also notes prominent Kansas Citians who advocated for clemency for Pendergast after his conviction of tax evasion. Documents also address Pendergast's involvement in the liquor distilling and distribution business.

Date: 
April 7th 1944

Letter from William A. Kitchen to Senator Harry S. Truman in which Kitchen describes in detail an investigation by Harvey L. Duncan concerning an alleged theft of an interstate shipment of liquor. Kitchen warns against a conspiracy charge, which would reflect poorly on the Kansas City organization. Thus, he suggests that any suspect be tried separately, and not as co-conspirators in a large scheme. In order to do this, Kitchen recommends Truman has Bennett C. Clark call Maurice M. Milligan and request that Milligan prosecutes violators separately.

Date: 
May 12th 1936

Issue of the anti-corruption, Kansas City-based newspaper, Future: The Newsweekly for Today. The front page includes an article, continued on pages 3 and 8, about the selling of merchandise stolen from Kansas merchants in Kansas City pawn shops, and description of the subsequent closing of small shops not tied to the Pendergast machine and sentencing of a black man to 40 years in jail in lieu of convicting the proprietor of a guilty shop at 9th and Main Streets, and other issues. Other featured articles include: “Fame!” (p.

Date: 
March 1st 1935

Issue of the anti-corruption, Kansas City-based newspaper, Future: The Newsweekly for Today. The front page includes an article, continued on page 8, describing the inequality of property tax assessments throughout Jackson County and other costs of homeownership. Other featured articles include: “He Beats the Rap but You Take It” (p.

Date: 
May 17th 1935

Issue of the anti-corruption, Kansas City-based newspaper, Future: The Newsweekly for Today. The front page includes a notice that Future’s publishers plan to temporarily suspend publication to reorganize the paper, and also note that “youth is interested and youth is organizing,” and “FUTURE is their paper.” Other featured articles include: “Why Charge a Cover?” (p.

Date: 
July 19th 1935
KANSAS CITY PUBLIC LIBRARY | DIGITAL HISTORY
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.