Photo Friday

Wabaunsee Outlook: Transient Camp #5 Newsletter, March, 1935

The Kansas Emergency Relief Committee operated four transient camps in Kansas between 1933 and 1935, all of which were lake construction projects.  The Lake Wabaunsee camp was constructed in December of 1933, and by the spring of 1934 there were hundreds of men working at the camp.

KERC barracks c1934 copy

Transient workers stand in the center of the barracks complex at the Kansas Emergency Relief Committee’s Transient Camp #5 at Lake Wabaunsee, circa 1934.

Site preparation and preliminary excavation at the spillway and dam continued through the summer of 1935 when the project came to a halt in August as the KERC was dissolved.  In January of 1936, the Works Progress Administration assumed control of the lake project, and by the end of the year, construction of the dam was completed.

During the early days of the lake construction in 1934 and 1935, while the camp was under the management of the KERC, there was a camp newspaper which was written, edited, and distributed by the camp workers.  The newsletter was named the “Wabaunsee Outlook“.

Recently, a Kansas author and researcher, Amy Heaven discovered two editions of the Wabaunsee Outlook while researching a book which she is authoring about another KERC project, Gardner Lake in Johnson County, Kansas.  Ms. Heaven scanned the two newsletters, both in the holdings of the Kenneth Spencer Research Library at Kansas University, Lawrence, Kansas, and she has made them available to the Flint Hills Special. Readers can scroll though Volume II, No. IV, published in March of 1935, seen below.

001Outlook March 1935a














The Wabaunsee Outlook appears courtesy the Kenneth Spencer Research Library, Lawrence Kansas.

To view the pages in a gallery format or as a full page image, click on any image below:

1 reply »

  1. I can’t tell you how much I enjoyed finding this publication and sharing it with you. It’s a pure pleasure to put a face on the countless individuals who toiled to bring us such lasting beauty. Enjoy! – Amy


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