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RG3628.AM:  Rosewater Family

Papers:  1853-1940

Omaha, Douglas County, Neb.:  Newspaper publishers; politicians

Size:  7 reels of microfilm and 1 envelope


Edward Rosewater was born in the Village of Bukowan, Bohemia on January 28, 1841. He attended the common schools until he was 13 years old. On Christmas Day, 1854, the family arrived in New York City and went to Cleveland, Ohio where they settled. For the next several years, young Rosewater worked as a clerk in retail grocery and dry goods stores and later he learned telegraphy, pursuing this vocation successfully. In 1862, Rosewater entered the Military Telegraph Corps and served in and around Washington, D.C. until he left to take a position with the newly established Pacific Telegraph Company in September 1863. He was sent to the company’s Omaha office and soon became manager.

In his capacity as manager of a telegraph office, Rosewater was initiated into the methods of news gathering and in 1870, founded the Omaha Daily Tribune. Later the same year, however, he retired from the paper and was elected to the Nebraska Legislature where he played a leading role in the investigation and subsequent impeachment of Governor David Butler. He also sponsored a bill providing for the creation of an Omaha School Board, a measure which was to be submitted to the voters of Omaha. To counteract opposition to this proposal, Rosewater began, on June 19, 1871, a small paper which he named the Omaha Daily Bee. The Bee soon flourished and in a few years, became one of the leading newspapers in the west. Rosewater used the Bee as a forum for his outspoken political philosophies which most often favored the Republican party. Rosewater was largely responsible for the promotion and planning of the Trans-Mississippi Exposition of 1898.

Aside form his legislative service, Rosewater never attained high public office. He withdrew from a bitterly contested U.S. Senatorial contest in 1901, and was defeated in 1906 for a Senate seat following a strenuous campaign. Edward Rosewater married Miss Leah Colman of Cleveland, Ohio, and the couple had five children, including Victor Rosewater who succeeded his father as editor of the Bee when Edward Rosewater died on August 31, 1906.

Victor Rosewater was born in Omaha on February 13, 1871. He was educated in the public schools and entered Johns Hopkins University in 1888. He later enrolled in Columbia University and received his bachelors degree in 1891 and his Ph.D. in 1893. His major areas of study included history, economics and political science.

Rosewater returned to Omaha and became managing editor of the Bee in 1895. He became involved in political affairs with his service in 1908 as a member of the Republican National Committee. In 1912, he was chairman of the Committee. In addition to his work as editor of the Bee following his father’s death, Victor Rosewater was active in civic affairs in Omaha, as a director of the public library from 1894-1905, the Omaha Board of Review in 1903, and numerous social and fraternal clubs.

Victor Rosewater was married to Katie Katz in Baltimore on January 27, 1904. The couple had two children. He died on July 12, 1940.


This collection consists of the papers of Edward and Victor Rosewater, 1853-1940 on 7 reels of 16mm microfilm. These papers were microfilmed by the American Jewish Archives, Cincinnati, Ohio.

Arrangement of documents on the microfilm is primarily topical and the researcher is cautioned that targets and other identification is limited. Manuscripts, printed matter, and correspondence are interspersed throughout each reel, and it may be necessary to examine several reels in order to view all documents having a chronological similarity. The collection relates to Edward Rosewater’s political affairs, to Republican party activities, and to his ownership and publication of the Omaha Daily Bee. Also included are his diaries, 1855-1870, and family materials from 1854. The Victor Rosewater papers also relate to Nebraska and National politics, especially the Republican party after 1900; to the Philadelphia Sesqui-Centennial, 1923-1926; and to Jewish matters, 1906-1937. Victor Rosewater’s diaries, 1914-1935 have been included on the microfilm.

The microfilm was purchased from the American Jewish Archives in July of 1973. This microfilm cannot be interlibrary loaned, and any requests to publish materials from the microfilm should be directed to the American Jewish Archives.

Additional materials (not on microfilm) include an original Omaha Daily Bee subscription list, some biographical information about the Rosewaters, two manuscripts by Victor Rosewater, and a scrapbook of Julia A. (Warner) Rosewater, wife of Charles C. Rosewater.


Reel 1

Box No. 1915 – Edward Rosewater, correspondence, 1872-1905

Box No. 1916 – Edward Rosewater, correspondence and address, 1878-1908

Box No. 1917 – Edward Rosewater, correspondence and addresses, 1863-1903

Box No. 1918 – Edward Rosewater, miscellaneous correspondence and biography, 1887-1906

Reel 2

Box No. 1919 – Rosewater Family papers, 1854-1935

Box No. 1920 – Republican party and Victor Rosewater, 1901-1931

Box No. 1921 – Jewish Matters, 1906-1937

Box No. 1922 – Victor Rosewater, Activities, 1920-1940

Box No. 1923 – Victor Rosewater, Correspondence, A-B

Box No. 1924 – Victor Rosewater, Correspondence, C-D

Box No. 1925 – Victor Rosewater, Correspondence, E-H

Reel 3

Box No. 1925 – Victor Rosewater, Correspondence, E-H (Cont.)

Box No. 1926 – Victor Rosewater, Correspondence, I-M

Box No. 1927 – Victor Rosewater, Correspondence, N-Q

Box No. 1928 – Victor Rosewater, Correspondence, R-V

Box No. 1929 – Republican National Convention

Box No. 1930 – Nebraska History and Politics

Box No. 1931 – Republican party and Victor Rosewater

Reel 4

Box No. 1932 – Victor Rosewater and the Sesqui-Centennial, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1923-1926

Box No. 1933 – Victor Rosewater, postal matters

Box No. 1934 – Items relating to Omaha, Nebraska

Box No. 1935 – Presidential correspondence

Box No. 1936 – Victor Rosewater and the Sesqui-Centennial, Philadelphia, 1923-1926

Reel 5

Box No. 1937 – The Omaha Bee, 1871-1919

Box No. 1938 – Newspaper and Journalism

Box No. 1939 – Victor Rosewater Activities, 1888-1920

Box No. 1940 – Victor Rosewater, articles, invitations, programs

Reel 6

Box No. 1941 – Victor Rosewater, correspondence and addresses, 1904-1913

Box No. 1942 – Victor Rosewater, miscellaneous correspondence, 1897-1934

Box No. 3209 – Correspondence, 1897-1930, A-H

Box No. 3210 – Correspondence, 1897-1930, I-N

Reel 7

Box No. 3210 – Correspondence, 1867-

Box No. 3211 – Edward Rosewater diaries, 1853-1870, Victor Rosewater Diaries, 1914-1935 and miscellaneous material

Box No. 3212 – Writings, Family correspondence and miscellany

Box No. 3213 – Miscellany

Envelope of unfilmed material includes:

Original Omaha Bee subscription list, ca. 1872

Biographical sketches

Edward Rosewater letter

“How I Came To Go Into Newspaper Work” by Victor Rosewater

“History of Cooperative News-Gathering in the United States” by Victor Rosewater

Copies of material from the American Jewish Archives

Scrapbook (1894-1900) of Julia A. (Warner) Rosewater, wife of Charles C. Rosewater



Jews — United States

Nebraska — Politics and government

Nebraska — Newspapers

Omaha (Neb.) — History

Omaha (Neb.) — Newspapers

Political conventions (1912)

Republican Party (U.S. : 1854-)

Rosewater Family

Rosewater, Edward, 1841-1906

Rosewater, Victor, 1871-1940


08-07-2007   Revised TMM/tmm