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O. C. McNary papers

Identifier: VAULT box-Ayer-MS-3128


Printed and handwritten army orders, 1882-1886, and letters written by O.C. McNary during 1885 from Indian Territory to his family in Kansas and Pennsylvania. From Camp Russel, Fort Reno, and a camp at Skelton Ranch, McNary's correspondence documents his trips via ambulance and mules throughout the Indian Territory. He describes road conditions, the Ponca and Oto agencies and Indians, a prairie fire, a visit with friends in Arkansas City, and the murder of a Chickasaw Indian by outlaws at Silver City. Letters also discuss Cheyenne Indian troubles at the Cheyenne and Arapahoe Agency near Fort Reno, the crookedness of the agent there (D.B. Dyer), the resulting inspection trip by Gen. Sheridan, and McNary's part in arrangements for the general's visit. Additionally, there are letters (1885-1886) regarding McNary's application for a surgeon's position at the National Home for Disabled Volunteers in Fort Leavenworth and other miscellany.


  • Creation: 1873-1886
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1882-1886


Biography of O. C. McNary

Army contract surgeon. Son of O.R. McNary, a justice of the peace originally from Pennsylvania, Oliver Clarkson McNary served as acting assistant surgeon at the hospital of the United States Military Prison in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, 1882-1884. He was then transferred to Fort Reno, Indian Territory, where he served until his June 18, 1886, discharge, which was part of a general reduction of the number of contract surgeons in the army.


0.1 Linear Feet (14 items in 3 folders)

Language of Materials


Ownership and Custodial History

Forms part of the Edward E. Ayer Manuscript Collection (Newberry Library)

Processing Information Note

Formerly known as Ayer MS 555a.

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Repository Details

Part of the The Newberry Library - Modern Manuscripts and Archives Repository

60 West Walton Street
Chicago Illinois 60610 United States