Military History

The Military History Collection includes major gifts from dozens of individuals – many of them K-State graduates – that document U.S. conflicts from before the Civil War through the present day.

The Military History Collection includes a diverse array of letters and diaries:

  • The Civil War diary of a Union surgeon who was imprisoned by Confederates.
  • Hundreds of original letters between Union General John S. Casement and his wife, Frances Jennings Casement, 1861-1865.
  • More than 500 letters documenting the life of newlywed Army First Lieutenant Richard Boydston and his wife Marion, 1943-1945.
  • A detailed account of the first six months of the Iraq war from Lonnie Maynard, a National Guardsman, to his wife and family.

In addition, the collection includes photos and military records from soldiers of all ranks. For example, Charles Eugene Roper was a 1938 K-State engineering graduate who was a prisoner of war from 1942 until his death in a Japanese POW camp in 1945. Documents accumulated by his brother detail Roper’s last years.

During that same period, Lieutenant General Richard J. Seitz served with parachute units through campaigns in Italy, France, Belgium, and Germany, including the Battle of the Bulge. Seitz’s personal papers provide an inside look at his storied military career.

Other aspects of twentieth-century warfare are represented through:

  • Oral histories from the WWII German POW camp in Concordia, Kansas.

  • The French Freedom papers, a collection of letters and memos about the French resistance movement during WWII that includes items from Charles DeGaulle.

  • The Marjorie L. Honstead Feldhausen Collection, which documents the WWII experiences of a member of the U.S. Army Nurse Corps.

It is also the official repository for the Society for Military History Records, which provides insight on the modern evolution of the study of military history. Finally, the Military History Collection includes the professional papers and libraries of scholars such as Kenneth S. Davis, Robert Higham, Jack Holl, Paul A. C. Koistinen, and Charles W. McArthur.

Donate to this collection

If you or your family own photos, diaries, or papers that document wartime experience or military life, please consider donating to the Morse Department of Special Collections. While we preserve materials from all eras, we are especially interested in items from the Vietnam War.

If you would like to support the military history collection, contact Nicole Askew, director of development at the KSU Foundation, at (785) 532-7530 or nicolea@found.ksu.edu.