The First Mission Day's?
An earlier article mentioned the community self-awareness that existed in the 1960's. It was passed along by a group of local leaders who believed that St. Paul's heart and soul would always be it's extraordinary history. As long as that story was preserved and promoted, we would be OK.
This photo article was from a June, 1957 issue of the Parsons Sun. Shown is a group of twenty-four St. Paul residents who were traveling south to Pawhuska, Oklahoma, to attend an Osage celebration. They weren't just dropping in. They had been invited by the Osage Tribal Council. Scroll on down for some information about our own large, elaborate Centennial Celebration that occurred ten years earlier. You will see some of the same names there.
Our Centennial Celebration - 1947.
It can be said that the 1947 Centennial Celebration was our first 'Mission Days.' It was probably larger and more elaborate than any celebration before or since; with the 1997 Sesquicentennial Celebration being the closest comparison.
This photo shows a group of St. Paul community leaders with Katy Railroad and Osage officials. The occasion was our formal invitation to "The Entire Osage People" to attend our May 14 - 17 Osage Mission Centennial Celebration. The photo was probably taken in Pawhuska. Quite a few of our Osage friends  accepted the invitation and came up for the party.
A Large Celebration!
The Centennial was a very large, well organized event, with four themed days, that attracted many people including several dignitaries. Folks traveled to St. Paul from across Kansas, Oklahoma and Missouri. Special trains brought people from St. Louis, Oklahoma towns and other locations.
The Centennial Flyer:
The Advance Register Article of May 23, 1947:
These are large files and might take a moment to load. There is space between pages 1 and 2 in the PDF version.
As you read through the Flyer it should be evident that the Centennial Celebration was a large, well orchestrated event. It required a lot of local cooperation and teamwork to pull together the politicians, religious figures, our Osage brothers, four days of carnival rides, bands, parade entries and other elements that showcased the pride our community had in itself and our heritage. It is not hard to imagine that local cash registers were ringing loud and often during those four days of fun and revelry.
Speaking of Dignitaries:
Here is a photo of two participants of the 1947 Centennial Celebration. It includes The Principal Chief of the Osage Nation, Chief Fred Lookout  and a local dignitary. Does anyone know who she is?
By the way, we should probably start learning to say the word above (I can't). There are some alternative words including "Terquasquicentennial" and "Quartoseptcentennial" and even more. 
The spring of 2022 will mark our 175th anniversary. One hundred and seventy-five years is a very long time when accounting for Kansas history. Our area showed the earliest signs of civilization, commerce, education and religion in southern Kansas. Osage Mission - St. Paul, and its remarkable cast of characters, left an indelible mark on the story of Kansas!
Some Reference Information:
1. At the time of the Centennial Celebration, St. Paul enjoyed a very strong relationship with our Osage benefactors. We knew that without them, St. Paul would not exist. They led missionaries into this area. They also gifted the land our town is built on.
2. In addition to the Governor's message, the Centennial Book also included recognition and messages from:
3. Chief Lookout was in traditional dress for the celebration. He was an elected official who carried a lot of responsibility for his people. The Osage Nation, including chief, congress and local agencies, operate as a microcosm of the U.S. Government.
4. If you are inclined to start researching words that mean "175th anniversary," you can start HERE.
Thoughts 'n Things
Some 'Thoughts' and short articles about past and present-day St. Paul and the Southern Kansas - 4 State Region.