CATALOGING BIOGRAPHICAL ANALYTICS
Tucked away within the volumes of Kansas statewide and local history books in your library are small historical treasures of interest to local historians, social history researchers, and genealogists.
Most county histories, especially those published around the turn of the last century, contain sections with short biographies of prominent local citizens. Besides the names, birth and death dates, these stories offer a glimpse into the settlement and development of a county, city or region. Tribulations and triumphs are succinctly reported, along with religious affiliation, military service, and organizational membership.
As a collected genre, these biographies give the reader a view of Kansas often missed by broader state histories or biographical works about the famous and infamous. Within these stories are the social histories of families and individuals of varying ethnic and religious backgrounds. Tales of pioneer days and Civil War experiences are related, along with immigrant stories. Reading through these biographies, the seemingly dull Kansas landscape is revealed to be a multipatterned quilt richly colored with the lives of people from many backgrounds and cultures.
As a genealogical resource, these biographies can be a treasure trove of names, dates, and relationships. The biography of a farmer living in a Washington Township might mention that his cousin lives in town where he runs the hardware store. Unknown information connecting individuals to people and events can bring forth those “squeals of delight” that only other genealogists fully understand.
Online indexes, or short, analytic, bibliographic records within your library catalog, link researchers to biographies within books or periodicals which can greatly expand access to these local community biographies. Here’s a list of three of the biography analytics collections in the Kansas Library Catalog that you can download into your local library catalog using the cataloging module of the KLC.
A STANDARD HISTORY OF KANSAS AND KANSANS
Multiple editions of the Standard History were published around 1918-1919.
(Transcripts of at least two of these editions are available online. Analytically cataloged biographies are statewide, covering people from all walks of life.)
To access the biographies in the KLC do an advanced search for:
standard history kansas kansans using “All headings.” Qualify your search in the right-hand column of the advanced search page under “Misc.” by: Related Resource (URL) Present. You should come up with bibliographic records for over 2,100 biographies analytically cataloged out of this title. These records all include a link to an online transcript of each biography within the book title.
Hebron, Neb., Illustriana Incorporated, 1933.
(This one volume title contains over 3,300 Kansas biographies, all of which have been cataloged.)
To access the biographies in the KLC, do a keyword search for:
kansas illustriana. Your results will include the record for the book too.
HISTORY OF ALLEN AND WOODSON COUNTIES, KANSAS
Iola, Kan. : Iola Register, 1901
(A dual county history with over 450 anayltically cataloged biographies)
To access the biographies in the KLC, do a keyword search for: history allen woodson counties. Your results will include the record for the book too.
Cataloging and Kansas Documents Librarian