Expedition to Rocky Mountain National Park enlarge enlarge

e-mailed June 22, 1998, 8:06 PM

White Cabin

by D. Ferrel Atkins

This view, including Curt Buchholtz and two little girls, is from the front porch of one of the William Allen White cabins.

White first came to Moraine Park in the summer of 1889 with a bunch of college boys from the University of Kansas, living in a cabin just down the hill from this site. When in 1893 he married Sallie Lindsey, they spent a part of their honeymoon in a remote cabin far up at the end of Moraine Park.

In 1895, White purchased the Emporia Gazette and soon became nationally known as a spokesman for mid-America, and the Emporia Gazette gained a reputation far beyond the boundaries of Emporia. He made his first mark by the editorial, "What's the Matter with Kansas", which was widely printed and reprinted by papers all over the United States in support of the candidacy of William McKinley. White, an active Republican, was a personal friend of every president from McKinley through Franklin D. Roosevelt and was himself sometimes mentioned as a possible vice presidential candidate in the 1920's.

In 1912 White purchased property here and immediately constructed the building shown in these photographs. Another view in this series looks down on the residence; this cabin was his "summer office" where he wrote many magazine articles and books.

Rachel on Porch
White's House in lower left corner

Those of middle age remember him best for the "Mary White" editorial which was a favorite selection in many elementary school "readers" of the 1920's. This editorial was written as he assuaged his grief over the death of his 16-year-old daughter Mary in a horse accident in 1921. He won two Pulitzer prizes, one for the editorial "A Letter to an Anxious Friend" in which he vigorously defended free speech as defined in the First Amendment and the other, posthumously, for his "Autobiography".

These cabins were acquired by the U. S. Government in 1973 and are now listed on the National Register of Historic Places.