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NEBRASKA STATE HISTORICAL SOCIETY MANUSCRIPT FINDING AID



RG3281.AM:  Edwin Augustus Fry, 1851-1936



Papers:  1878-1938

Niobrara, Knox County, Neb.; South Dakota; Colorado:  Newspaper editor

Size:  3 boxes; 1.5 cu.ft.



BACKGROUND NOTE



Edwin Augustus Fry was born in Norwalk, Connecticut, April 12, 1851, the son of John and Josephine (Preston) Fry. Edwin attended the common schools of Norwalk and in 1866, at the age of fifteen, began a two-year apprenticeship in the jewelers trade. After purchasing a small printing outfit, a “fad” among young men in 1867, he embarked on his initial journalistic project, publishing an amateur newspaper called the “Yankee Pedler” which had over 1,000 subscribers. His real apprenticeship in the printing trade began in the office of the Norwalk Gazette. In 1869 he attended a convention of boy editors and printers at the home of Charles Scribner, from which the Society of “Fossils, Amateur Journalists of the Past” developed.



Fry went to Brooklyn, New York, in 1871 and for several months was employed on a weekly newspaper, The Herald, at Williamsburg, New York. He also worked briefly for the firm of D. Appleton and Company publishers, until the spring of 1873 when he traveled to Yankton, South Dakota, where he worked on the Herald. Soon after he became local editor and printer on the Times at Springfield, until Fall of 1874 when he founded the Niobrara Pioneer at Niobrara, Knox County, Nebraska. He owned and operated the Pioneer until 1905, when he stopped publication, returned to South Dakota and founded the Lake Andes Wave. In the years following 1907, Fry took over newspapers in various towns in South Dakota and Colorado, rehabilitating them physically and financially. At the time of his death he was the publisher of the Herrick News in Herrick, South Dakota.



In addition to his journalistic activities, Fry was postmaster at Niobrara in 1874 and again in 1881. The following year, he became an Indian trader at the Pine Ridge Agency, holding this office until 1885. He also served as a member of the Joint Commission to determine the boundary line for an Island in the Missouri River in 1895. Among his other interests and activities were politics, the building of the first bridge across the Niobrara River in 1884, promotion of plans for bridging the Missouri River at Niobrara, and helping to assure the construction of the Northwestern Railroad into Niobrara.



Edwin A. Fry died in Herrick, South Dakota on October 20, 1936, at the age of 85 years.



SCOPE AND CONTENT NOTE



This collection consists of manuscript materials arranged in five series: 1) Correspondence, 1878-1936; 2) Manuscripts; 3) Scrapbooks, 1906-1935; 4) Miscellany; and 5) Clippings.



The bulk of this collection dates from 1911 to 1933 and consists of correspondence relating to Edwin Fry’s activities as a newspaper editor in Niobrara, Nebraska; Herrick, Yankton, and Ft. Pierre, South Dakota; and Julesburg and Sedgwick, Colorado. The collection includes information on Fry’s associations with the South Dakota Direct Legislation Organization, the South Dakota Progressive Republican Primary Organization, the Kansas, Nebraska, Dakota Highway Association, and the Missouri River Navigation Association. Of special interest is the correspondence regarding the Council of Defense and their accusations against Fry during the first World War when he was living in Julesburg, Colorado. Fry was also very active in South Dakota political campaigns at the state and national level. Correspondents include Valentine T. McGillicuddy, 1894; Lorenzo Crounse, 1894; Edgar Howard, 1923-1933; Robert M. LaFollette, 1914-1918; Richard O. Richards, 1911-1920; Victor Rosewater, 1901-1906; and Addison E. Sheldon, 1924-1925.



Note:  See the photo component [RG3281.PH] for related images. The NSHS Library contains issues of the Niobrara Pioneer on microfilm. See the Nebraska History index for articles relating to Edwin A. Fry.



DESCRIPTION



Series 1 – Correspondence, 1878-1936


Box 1

Folder

  1. 1878

  2. 1880

  3. 1884

  4. 1885

  5. 1886

  6. 1887

  7. 1889

  8. 1890

  9. 1891

  10. 1892

  11. 1893

  12. 1894

  13. 1895

  14. 1901

  15. 1902-1903

  16. 1904

  17. 1906

  18. 1907

  19. 1908

  20. 1909

  21. 1910

  22. 1911

  23. 1911 – R.O. Richards

  24. 1912

  25. 1913

  26. 1913 – Lee Baker

  27. 1913 – R.O. Richards

  28. 1913 – Roy Willy

  29. 1914

  30. 1915

  31. 1914-1915 – R.O. Richards

  32. 1916

  33. 1916 – R.O. Richards

  34. 1916 – John C. Wagner

  35. 1917

  36. 1917 – James R. Noland

  37. 1917 – Courtland Smith

  38. 1917 – John Wagner

  39. 1918

  40. 1918 – Council of Defense Colorado

  41. 1918 – Samuel Lewis

  42. 1918 – James R. Noland

  43. 1918 – John Wagner

  44. 1919

  45. 1919 – F.C. Marshall

  46. 1919 – J.R. Noland


Box 2

Folder

  1. 1920 – R.O. Richards

  2. 1920

  3. 1921

  4. 1922

  5. 1923

  6. 1923 – Edgar Howard

  7. 1923 – A.E. Sheldon

  8. 1924

  9. 1924 – Edgar Howard

  10. 1925

  11. 1925 – Edgar Howard

  12. 1926

  13. 1926 – Edgar Howard

  14. 1926 – R.B. Howell

  15. 1927

  16. 1927 – Edgar Howard

  17. 1928

  18. 1929

  19. 1930

  20. 1931

  21. 1931 – Fossils

  22. 1931 – Edgar Howard

  23. 1932

  24. 1933

  25. 1934

  26. 1934 – Marie Weekes

  27. 1935

  28. 1936

  29. Undated Howard, Howell, Farnell, Wagner, Grace

  30. Undated



Series 2 – Manuscripts


Box 3

Folder

  1. Manuscripts



Series 3 – Scrapbooks, 1906-1935




  1. 1906-1977

  2. 1907-1935



Series 4 – Miscellany




  1. Biographical data

  2. Libel case

  3. Council of Defense, Liberty Bonds

  4. Council of Defense – Clippings

  5. Miscellany

  6. Certificates, Yankton map, etc. (See OB006)



Series 5 – Clippings




  1. Clippings

  2. Clippings – Bridges



 


ADDED ENTRIES:

Colorado. State Council of Defense

Fry, Edwin Augustus, 1851-1936

Howard, Edgar, 1858-1951

Journalists — Colorado

Journalists — Nebraska

Journalists — South Dakota

Richards, Richard Olsen, 1866-



 



JEP/ht   12-01-1972

Revised KFK   10-29-1996

Encoded TMM   04-06-2010