A gathering of the citizens of Pottawatomie County was called to meet at the Carnegie library in Shawnee, February 18, 1926, for the purpose of organizing a local historical society. Eighteen people responded to this call, and a temporary organization was perfected.
At this meeting Joseph P. Thoburn, of the State Historical Society was present, and spoke on the importance of preserving the early history of the country. He emphasized the importance of the sentimental side of history, which he declared is the true value of history. Public records, deeds, transfers of property, legal proceedings, boundary lines, are matters of course—but they tell little of the struggles, the hardships endured, the heart throbs—the spirit of the people that go to make up the progress of a state. He reminded those present of the unique position in which we are placed; although one of the youngest states in the matter of years, yet without parallel in history in the matter of development. We have before us the experience of the older states. They in the slow and laborious growth were so engrossed with the work before them that they gave little concern to a record of their progress, and it has been with infinite labor and care that they have gone back over the years and pieced together their history, bit by bit. We have among us people who have leisure and knowledge to make a full and complete record of those early struggles and successes and they should he encouraged to put these records in such form that they may be kept. Such history would stimulate patriotism and would materially help toward true Americanization.
Mr. Thoburn also gave an account of the acceptance of the design for the State Flag, which was the work of Mrs. George Fluke, Jr., the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. R. W. Funk, of Shawnee. It was largely through the interest and enthusiasm of Mrs. Fluke that this meeting was called, and the
The meeting then adjourned, to meet again, at the same place on February 25, when a permanent organization was perfected. The name adopted for the society is The Pottawatomie County Historical Society. Officers were elected for one year as follows: President, John Klapp, of Tecumseh; vice-president, Cash Cade, of Shawnee; second vice-president, Mrs. Kate Snyder, of Asher; recording secretary, Mrs. Eldon Pettigrew; corresponding secretary, Mrs. L. V. Hanon, of Tecumseh; treasurer, Mrs. A. N. Willey, of Shawnee; custodian, Mrs. A. M. Baldwin, of Shawnee.