Table of Contents
The Pottawatomie County Park
Flint Hills Options
Kansas Flint Hills
v. Cherokee Strip
The Winn Bills
The Osage Prairie
The Spring Hill
Z Bar Ranch
The "Kassebaum Commission"
Note on Sources
Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve
Legislative History, 1920-1996
 The ambivalence toward the plains and prairies that is expressed in contrasting images of "desert" and "garden"
is explored in several essays that appear in Images of the Plains: The Role of Human Nature in Settlement, ed.
Brian W. Blouet and Merlin P. Lawson (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1975). For "nature writing"
treatments of the same phenomenon, see John Madson, Where the Sky Began (Ames: Iowa State University
Press, 1995, rev. ed.) and Ian Frazier, Great Plains (New York: Penguin Books, 1989). Except as noted, the
quotations cited here can be found in these books.
Paul M. Angle, Prairie State: Impressions of Illinois, 1673-1967, By Travelers and Other Observers (Chicago:
University of Chicago Press, 1968).
 Herbert Quick, Vandemark's Folly (Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill, 1922).
George Catlin, Letters and Notes on the Manners, Customs and Conditions of North American Indians, 1913
(reprint New York: Dover Press, 1973), 289-93.
V. Shelford, "Preservation of Natural Biotic Communities," Ecology 14 (1933), 240-245; Preliminary
Environmental Assessment, Proposed Prairie National Park/Kansas-Oklahoma, Appendix A: Planning
Directive, 2 (NPS: Washington, D.C., 1975; published as House Document No. 96-12, Part II in 1979), [hereafter
cited as Preliminary Environmental Assessment, 1975]; Dan L. Flores, "A Long Love Affair with an Uncommon
Country: Environmental History and the Great Plains," in Prairie Conservation, ed. Fred B. Samson and Fritz L.
Knopf (Washington, D.C. and Covelo, CA: Island Press, 1996), 14-15.
Daniel S. Licht, Ecology and Economics of the Great Plains (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1997), 16-
17, 90-97. See also R. Douglas Hurt, "Federal Land Reclamation in the Dust Bowl," Great Plains Quarterly 6
(1986), 94-106; H. H. Wooten, The Land Utilization Program, 1934 to 1964: Origin, Development and Present
Status, Agriculture Economic Report 85 (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Economic Research
Flores, 15. Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Park is now called Theodore Roosevelt National Park. Scott's Bluff
National Monument (Nebraska), also in the Great Plains, entered the national park system in 1919. Three other
Great Plains areas were acquired and designated as national parks between 1900 and 1906: Wind Cave in South
Dakota, Platt in Oklahoma, and Sully's Hill in North Dakota. NPS officials considered them to be "pork-barrel
maneuvers" and budgeted allocations for them grudgingly. Sully's Hill, in particular, lacked the scenic qualities
that the NPS wished to associate with national parks, and director Stephen Mather even sought to abolish it. See
Hal Rothman, Preserving Different Pasts (Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1989), 53., 128
Attitudes change with time, however; Wind Cave National Park is now considered to be a prime example of
restored mixed-grass prairie.
"Background report for western Nebraska meeting, National Research Council, Division of Biology and
Agriculture, Committee on the Ecology of North American Grasslands," 22 April 1937; "Great Plains National
Monument Project," The Council Ring [NPS newsletter], 8 January 1940; Victor H. Cahalane, "A Proposed Great
Plains National Monument," reprint from The Scientific Monthly 51 (August 1940), 125-139. Harpers Ferry Center.
See also James Lester Swint, "The Proposed Prairie National Park: A Case Study of the Controversial NPS"
(Kansas State University, Master's Thesis, 1971), 33-35.
 Preliminary Environmental Assessment 1975, Appendix A,2. See Also Conrad L. Wirth, Parks, Politics, and the
People (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1980), Ch. 9.
G.W. Tomanek, An Analysis of Three Areas in the Flint Hills (1958); NPS, Proposal for a True Prairie National
Park (Midwest Regional Office, Omaha, December 1958); Swint, 37-43. See also G.W. Tomanek and F.W.
Albertson, An Analysis of Some Grasslands in the True Prairie (1959).
NPS, Reevaluation Study, True Prairie Grasslands (Midwest Regional Office, Omaha, 1960).
NPS, Statement Analyzing Studies and Preliminary Plan for Proposed Prairie National Park, Pottawatomie
County, Kansas (Midwest Regional Office, Omaha, September 1960). The 1960 report proposed a 57,000 acre park
adjacent to the Tuttle Creek Reservoir as the "ideal solution" (3) in order to preclude private home development
along the shoreline, which would "create definite intrusions on important views within the park" and "require
access roads not located or designed for park purposes" (7).
NPS, A Proposed Prairie National Park (Secretary of the Interior's Office, 1961, publication paid for by
privately donated funds).
Gary Baldridge, "Pottawatomie County says No to Prairie Preservation," Kansas History 16:2 (1993), 100. See
also Baldridge, "The Flint Hills: A Question of Control," Master's Thesis, Emporia State University, 1991.
Baldridge, 99-101; H.R. 12538, Avery, 86th Cong. 2d sess., 1960; S. 3651, Schoeppel and Carlson, 86th Cong. 2d
Former Secretary of Interior Stewart Udall, telephone interview with Rebecca Conard, 4 June 1998; Baldridge, 98-
Baldridge, 101-103; Swint, 97-98.
S. 73, Schoeppel and Carlson, 87th Cong. 1st sess., 1961. See also Stewart Udall, Secretary of the Interior, to
Clinton P. Anderson, Chairman, Senate Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs, 14 November 1961; "Interior
Department Recommends Legislation to Create Prairie National Park in Kansas," U.S. Department of the Interior
news release, 15 November 1961, Harpers Ferry Center.
Hall also was a member of the NPS Advisory Board.
Robert H. Clark, "A Prairie Park Fund is Sought," Kansas City Star, 17 January 1962; "Kansas House Passes
$100,000 Park Grant," Topeka Capital Journal, 4 February 1962.
Udall interview, 4 June 1998; Baldridge, 104-106; Swint, 108-115.
Alvin S. McCoy, "Kansas Site As Ideal for Park," Kansas City Times, 5 December 1961.
H.R. 4424, Avery, and S. 986, Pearson and Carlson. See Acting Secretary of the Interior, to Wayne N. Aspinall,
Chairman, House Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs, letter dated18 July 1963.
Joe Lastelic, "Seek to Clear Way for Park," Kansas City Star, 4 March 1963; "Twin Mound Ranchers Plan
Prairie National Park Meet," Topeka Capital Journal, 14 April 1963; Dick King, "Park Proposal Gets Protests,"
Topeka Capital Journal, 16 April 1963; "Senate Group Pledges Early Decision on Proposed Park," Topeka
Capital Journal, 9 August 1963. See also Anthony Wayne Smith, President and General Counsel, National Parks
Association, "An analysis of S. 986, submitted on invitation... at hearings of the Subcommittee on Public Lands of
the Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs of the Senate of the United States," 8 August 1963, Harpers Ferry
Center. See also Baldridge, 106-107; Swint, 141-146.
NPS, The Prairie Panorama: A Proposal for a Prairie-Great Plains Tourway (1965), office of origin not
NPS, The Living Prairie: The Opportunity for a True Prairie National Park, Oklahoma-Kansas (1965), office
of origin not identified.
Ray Morgan, "A Prairie Park Plea by Hickel," Kansas City Times, 10 October 1969.
Norma Northrop to Lynn Burris, Jr., memorandum dated 22 January 1970 concerning January 21 meeting of the
Prairie National Park Natural History Association meeting in Wichita, Kansas; Frank J. Anneberg, "A Prairie
National Park in the State of Kansas," information sheet dated 1 January 1970, TPNP Administrative Papers.
SB 390, Steineger, 1970, TPNP Administrative Papers.
"Docking Names Manhattan Editor to Head Prairie Park Committee," Wichita Eagle, 22 April 1970; John
Petterson, "Tall Grass Country Seen as Prairie Park Location," Wichita Eagle, 11 November 1970.
John C. Higgins, Superintendent, Homestead National Monument to Acting Director, Midwest Region NPS,
memorandum of 9 December 1970; Minutes, Governor's Advisory Committee for a Prairie National Park, 4
December 1970, TPNP Administrative Papers.
"Tallgrass Prairie National Park, Local Problems and Possible Solutions - Questions and Probably Answers"
issued by Prairie National Park Natural History Association, 15 September 1971, Duncan Papers,TPNP.
H.R. 9621, Winn, 92nd Cong., 1st sess., 1971; S. 2149, Pearson, 92nd Cong., 1st sess., 1971. According to
Patricia Duncan, this bill and subsequent bills introduced by Winn during the 1970s were principally drafted by
attorney Lawrence Wagner, now deceased, of Overland Park. Patricia Duncan, unrecorded telephone
conversation with Rebecca Conard, 28 August 1998.
E. Raymond Hall to George Hartzog, Director, NPS, 13 August 1971; Gov. Robert Docking to Rep. William Roy,
14 June 1971, TPNP Administrative Papers. See also E. Raymond Hall, "Tallgrass Prairie National Park," American
Forests, December 1971.
S. 1159, Bellmon, 92nd Cong., 1st sess., 1971.
J. Leonard Volz, Director, NPS Midwest Region to Director, NPS, memorandum of 22 November 1971, TPNP
Richard K. Griswold, Chief, Division of Legislative Coordination and Support, NPS to Chief, Division of
Legislation, memorandum of 10 November 1971, TPNP Administrative Papers.
"Report On Status of Legislation, and Local Expressions of Opinion," 20 March 1972, Duncan Papers, KU.
Minutes, Tallgrass Prairie National Park, 22 June 1972 [this appears to be the organizational meeting of STP];
press release issued by Citizens Environmental Council, Kansas City, Mo., 21 July 1972. Duncan Papers, TPNP.
Inasmuch as the Prairie National Park Natural History Association's visibility seems to fade at this point, it is
likely that STP also succeeded this group.
Patricia D. Duncan, "Is There Anything Worth Saving in Kansas?" Environmental Action, 11 July 1971, 3-7,
Keith Tillotson, "National Park Movement Revived," K-State Collegian, 28 July 1972.
Forest Hintz, "Ribbon Concept Proposed for Park," Wichita Eagle, 21 March 1973; "Summary, Flint Hills
National Parkway System Proposal," 18 April 1973, Duncan Papers, TPNP.
Keith Tillotson to Patricia Duncan, letter dated 21 October 1972, Duncan Papers, TPNP.
NPS, "(Preliminary) Statement for Management and Planning, (Proposed) Cherokee Strip National Historic Park
(Kansas-Oklahoma)," Midwest Regional Office, Omaha, January 1973; Skubitz to Walker, letter dated 28 February
1973, Duncan Papers, TPNP.
Roger Myers, "Skubitz Boosts Prairie Park Idea," Topeka Daily Capital, 26 January 1973; "Skubitz Says
Congress Best Hope for Parks," Wichita Eagle, 26 Friday 1973.
"Park Proposal To Be Studied, Says Skubitz," Topeka Daily Capital, 7 March 1973.
"Chronology of Action by the Public in Kansas Following Release of the Cherokee Strip Suitability/Feasibility
Study Report," c. November 1973; "Tallgrass Prairie Group Favors Separate Park," STP press release, 9 March
1973; "Prairie Park Citizens Lobby Proposes Park Location," STP press release, 13 March 1973, Duncan Papers,
"Flint Hills Park Draws Opposition," Wichita Beacon, 29 March 1973; Jerry Engler, "Tallgrass Prairie Reserve
Opposed," Topeka Daily Capital, 20 April 1973. Hughes to Ronald Walker, director NPS, letter of 10 May 1973,
Duncan Papers, TPNP.
"Chronology of Action...." See also "Tallgrass National Park" position paper, Regional Development and
Natural Resources Committee of the American Institute of Architects, 8 June 1973, Duncan Papers, KU.
"Skubitz Says Prairie Park Battle is Futile," Madison (Kansas) News, 21 June 1973. See also "Skubitz Gives
Views on Proposed Prairie Park in the Flint Hills Area," Leon (Kansas) News, 19 July 1973.
H.R. 9262, Winn, 93rd Cong., 1st sess., 1973; "A Vital Hearing on Prairie Park Next Thursday in Topeka, Kansas
City Times, 23 August 1973.
"Chronology of Action...."; Ray Morgan, "Prairie Park Site Found," Kansas City Star, 30 August 1973. See also
Duncan to Charles Pearson, Editor, The Wichita Eagle-Beacon, 9 August 1973 and Duncan to Editor, The Wichita
Eagle, 10 September 1973, Duncan Papers, KU.
John Petterson, "Foes of Prairie National Park Dealt Setback in Close Vote," Wichita Eagle, 28 September 1973;
John Petterson, "Restrained Fervor: Group Cautious on Park Proposal," Wichita Beacon, 30 October 1973; Ken
Peterson, "Ft. Riley Suggested Prairie Park Site," Topeka Daily Capital, 31 October 1973.
Former U.S. Representative Larry Winn, Jr., interview with Rebecca Conard, Prairie Village, Kansas, 6 May 1998.
Ray Morgan, "Prairie Park at Ft. Riley 'Unfeasible'," Kansas City Times, 15 November 1973.
Ray Morgan, "Morton Agrees to Prairie Park Study," Kansas City Times, 21 December 1973.
Senate Concurrent Resolution No. 74, Reports of Special Committees to the 1974 Kansas Legislature, 12-1
through 12-4, Duncan Papers, KU; "Gaines Nixes Federal Park," Wichita Eagle-Beacon 19 February 1974.
Ray Morgan, "Caravan for Prairie Park, Kansas City Times, 20 April 1974; Joe Lastelic, "Students Petition for
Tallgrass Park, Kansas City Times, 24 April 1974.
"Energy Crises Insure Continuing Threats to Virgin Prairie," Tallgrass Prairie News, publ. by Save the
Tallgrass Prairie, Inc., July 1974; "Will the Tallgrass Prairie Be Plowed Under?" Not Man Apart, published by
Friends of the Earth and League of Conservation Voters, July 1974, Duncan Papers,TPNP.
Roger Moore, "Udall Back in Flint Hills to Promote Prairie Park," Kansas City Star, 29 September 1974; "Udall
Backs Need for Prairie Park," Topeka Capital-Journal, 29 September 29, 1974.
Moore, "Udall Back in Flint Hills...."
Dave Bartel, "Prairie Park Backers Map Plans," Wichita Eagle-Beacon, 28 September 1974; Roger Moore,
"Tallgrass Prairie Park May Be Close to Reality," Kansas City Times, 30 September 1974; "National Park Study to
Take Until Mid-'76," Topeka Daily Capital, 30 September 1974.
"Tallgrass Park Opposition Bill Goes to Senate," Wichita Eagle, 12 March 1975; "Prairie Park Supporters Before
Committee Today," Wichita Beacon, 27 March 1975; Roger Myers, "Senate Against Park," Topeka Daily
Capital, 11 April 1975. See also "STP Action Alert," c. April 1975; "Kansas Legislature" column in Tallgrass
Prairie News 3:1 (June 1975), Duncan Papers TPNP. See also Carole Ise, "What Really Happened in Topeka,"
Tallgrass Prairie News, Conference Issue, (September 1975), Duncan Papers, KU.
"Top Names Join STP Honorary Board," Tallgrass Prairie News 3:1 (June 1975).
H.R. 8726, H.R. 9012, and H.R. 9376, 94th Cong., 1st sess., 1975. See also Minutes, Eleventh Meeting of the
Board of Councillors of Save the Tallgrass Prairie, Inc., 19 July 1975, Duncan Papers KU; "Winn, Udall to Co-
Sponsor Park Bill," Tallgrass Prairie News 3:1 (June 1975), Duncan Papers KU.
"Prairie Park Gains Sierra Club Backing," Wichita Eagle, 14 September 1975.
Larry Winn, Jr., "Letter from Capitol Hill," Tallgrass Prairie News, Conference Issue (September 1975).
Preliminary Environmental Assessment, 1975, 2-4.
Ibid., 5, 7.
"Tallgrass Prairie Foundation Makes Debut," Tallgrass Prairie News 4:1 (October 1976), Duncan Papers KU.
Organization of the foundation in 1976 marked a transition point for STP as it sought to move beyond its origins
as a political activist group and become a permanent organization with a public education mission. In 1983, the
Tallgrass Prairie Foundation became the Grassland Heritage Foundation, which is still in existence and
headquartered at Shawnee Mission, Kansas. Attorney Larry Wagner, one of the founders of STP, donated his
300-acre farm to the Grassland Heritage Foundation to be used for research and educational purposes. The farm,
calledThe Prairie Center, is located west of Olathe. Patricia Duncan telephone conversation, 28 August 1998; see
also "The Prairie Center," informational brochure, c. 1983, produced by the Grassland Heritage Foundation,
Duncan Papers, TPNP.
"STP Annual Report 1976," Tallgrass Prairie News, 22 January 1977, Duncan Papers KU.
Minutes of the Sixteenth Meeting of the Board of Councillors of Save the Tallgrass Prairie, Inc., 22 January
1977, Duncan Papers KU.
"Mike" to Senator [James] Pearson, memorandum, 24 March 1977, Duncan Papers KU.
Ibid.; "STP Annual Report 1976." P.L. 94-565 is the Payments in Lieu of Taxes Act of 1976.
"STP Annual Report 1976."
"Briefing Paper: Tallgrass Prairie Park" (NPS Midwest Regional Office, Omaha, February 1979), 9; "Up-date on
the Issue," Tallgrass Prairie News, February 1978, Administrative Papers TPNP. See also Bayard Webster, "Plan
to Protect a Piece of the Prairie," New York Times, 15 March 1978; Linda M. Billings, "The Tall Grass Prairie:
Vanishing Landscape or National Park?" Sierra Club Bulletin, April 1977. Wagner, a founding member of STP
and active in Republican politics at the state level, appears to have been one of Winn's principal contacts among
environmental interest groups. Winn interview, 6 May 1998; Patricia Duncan telephone conversation, 28 August
H.R. 9120, Winn, 95th Cong., 1st sess., 1977; H.R. 9955, Winn and 16 cosponsors, 95th Cong., 1st sess., 1977;
"STP Annual Report for 1977," Duncan Papers KU; Winn interview, 6 May 1998.
"STP Annual Report for 1977."
Minutes of the Twenty-first Meeting of the Board of Councillors of Save the Tallgrass Prairie, Inc., 6 May 1978,
Duncan Papers KU.
Art Eck, Keyman/MWRO, memorandum to file concerning January 23-24, 1979 trip to Shawnee Mission, Kansas
to meet with Elaine Shea, Executive Director of STP, and Larry Wagner, STP Board of Councillors; "Remarks of Ira
J. Hutchison, Deputy Director, NPS at the Fifth Annual Tallgrass Prairie Conference, Elmdale, Kansas, September
12, 1978," typescript, TPNP Administrative Files.
Eck memorandum; "Briefing Paper: Tallgrass Prairie Park," February 1979.
Bill W. Dean, Executive Assistant to the Regional Director, to Foster Freeman, External Affairs, memorandum, 2
February 1979; J.L. Dunning, Regional Director, Midwest Region, to Director, memorandum,14 February 1979;
Jimmy D. Taylor, Superintendent, Fort Larned NHS, memorandum to file, 16 March 1979, TPNP Administrative
Files. Director Whalen is referenced only by title in Dunning's memorandum of 14 February, which reveals the
internal lines of communication.
Acting Regional Director, Midwest Region, to Chief of Legislation, WASO, memorandum, 13 April 1979, TPNP
When Winn was asked how much consultation his office had with the NPS as H.R. 5592 was being drafted, he
replied, "Practically none." Rather, it appears as though Winn and his advisors thought they could broaden
support for the proposed park if the concept itself was "broadened." Winn interview, 6 May 1998.
H.R. 5592, Winn and Udall, 96th Cong., 1st sess., 1979; Larry Winn, Jr. and Morris K. Udall, open letter to
colleagues in the House of Representatives, 25 October 1979, TPNP Administrative Files.
Winn and Udall open letter to colleagues; "New Tallgrass Prairie National Reserve Bill Explained," National
Audubon Society news release, 18 October 1978; "The Tallgrass Prairie Reserve: A New Concept," Save the
Tallgrass Prairie circular, November 1979; "Tallgrass Prairie Bill Introduced," Tallgrass Prairie News,
November/December 1979, TPNP Administrative Files.
Tallgrass Prairie News, February/March 1979, Duncan Papers TPNP.
Dave Bartel, "Tallgrass Park Plan Introduced," Wichita Eagle, 16 October 1979; Ken Peterson, "Bill Introduced
Takes New Tack to Prairie Park," Topeka Daily Capital-Journal, 16 October 1979. See also John Yemma,
"Preserving U.S. Prairie Lands Is A Hot Issue," Christian Science Monitor, 17 January 1980.
Joseph A. Lastelic, "Winn, Udall Seek Support For Prairie Reserve Proposal," Kansas City Times, 30 October
Dan Glickman, standard constituent reply concerning H.R. 5592, 30 January 1980, Glickman Papers.
Nancy Kassebaum, constituent replies concerning H.R. 5592, 27 November 1979, 30 November 1979; Bob Dole
to Morris Udall, letter, 9 November 1979, Kassebaum Papers. Professor Lloyd Hulbert and other faculty members
at Kansas State University recommended this site to The Nature Conservancy. After land purchases were
completed, the site was formally named the Konza Prairie Research Natural Area. KSU assumed management
responsibility, and Hulbert became the first director.
"Prairie Park on Back Burner," Wichita Eagle-Beacon, 14 March 1980.
Dave Bartel, "Tallgrass Park? Not During Reagan's Term," Wichita Eagle, 16 April 1980.
"Fight Over Park is Tough as the Hills," Kansas City Times, 23 June 1980.
Winn interview, 6 May 1998.
Jack Thompson, "Prairie Park Efforts Shift to Oklahoma," Kansas City Times, 12 September 1984; Ron
Klataske, Regional Vice President of the National Audubon Society to Oklahoma chapter presidents, vice
presidents, conservation chairpersons, education chairpersons, editors and to special citizen conservationists,
memorandum, 27 July 1984, Duncan Papers KU.
Douglas Faris, telephone interview with Rebecca Conard, 14 May 1998; John Linahan, telephone interview with
Rebecca Conard, 26 May 1998. See Annick Smith, Big Bluestem: Journey Into the Tall Grass (Tulsa, OK: Council
Oak Books, 1996), Ch. 9, for a discussion of the politics behind creation of the Nature Conservancy's Tallgrass
Prairie Preserve in Osage County, Oklahoma.
"Osage Prairie Preserve Task Force Makes Recommendations," Tallgrass Prairie News 5:2 (Spring 1985),
Duncan Papers KU; Barbara Musfeldt, "Pathway Opens for a Prairie Park in Oklahoma," Kansas City Star, 12
June 1985; Dennis Farney, "Oklahomans Debate A New Kind of Park: Vast Prairie Expanse," Wall Street Journal,
13 August 1985.
Faris interview, 14 May 1998.
Oklahoma Senators David Boren and Don Nickles and Arkansas Senator Dale Bumpers co-sponsored the
Senate bill; Congressman Mickey Edwards introduced legislation in the House, 100th Cong. 1st sess., 1987.
Senate Subcommittee on Public Lands, National Parks and Forests of the Committee on Energy and Natural
Resources, Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve, 100th Cong., 2nd sess., 26 May 1988. See also Peter A.A. Berle,
President, National Audubon Society to William Penn Mott, Jr., Director, NPS, 17 June 1986; Bransford Hunt
Shoemake, President, Tallgrass Prairie Preserve Association to Donald Hodel, Secretary of the Interior, 23 July
1986; Osage Preservation Coalition news release, 3 July 1986; "Tallgrass Prairie Preserve, Osage County,
Oklahoma," NPS Briefing Data, September 1986; "New Area Report, Study of Alternatives: Tallgrass Prairie
Preserve, Osage County, Oklahoma" (NPS: Washington, D.C., 1987), all documents on file at NPS Office of Park
Michael Martinez, "Prairie Park Loses Support of Oklahoma Backer," Kansas City Times, 6 August 1988. After
the legislative effort collapsed, The Nature Conservancy stepped in and purchased aboaut 30,000 acres of the
Chapman-Barnard Ranch to establish the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve. Since that time, several thousand acres have
been added to the preserve.
The entire preserve was designated as Spring Hill Ranch National Historic Landmark on 18 Februrary 1997.
Prior to that, the Spring Hill Farm and Stock Ranch House was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in
1970, and the Lower Fox Creek School was listed on the NRHP in 1974.
According to Ron Klataske, he was contacted in the fall of 1986 by Doug Wilden, a ranch real estate agent in
Hutchinson, and notified that the Spring Hill Z Bar Ranch was undergoing management changes and might be for
sale. Several months later, in February 1987, Klataske first spoke to Dudley Alexander, vice president of the trust
department of Boatman's National Bank in Kansas City, who represented the ranch trustees. Discussions
between Klataske and Alexander continued for about a year, during which time they discussed the potential of
the property in terms of natural resource conservation and interpretation of the cultural history of ranching in
Kansas. Early in 1988, Alexander indicated that he, and presumably the ranch trustees he represented, were
willing to extend an option agreement to the Audubon Society. This agreement was finalized in June 1988. Ron
Klataske, former West Central Regional Vice President, National Audubon Society, telephone interview with
Rebecca Conard, 1 July 1998.
Klataske to Glickman, 27 September 1988, Glickman Papers.
 Klataske interview, 1 July 1998.
"Scott" to Dan [Glickman], memorandum concerning tallgrass prairie meeting with delegation and Ron
Klataske, December 7, 1988; "discussion draft" bill to establish Flint Hills Prairie National Monument, dated 6
January 1989, Glickman Papers.
Informational letter outlining the historic and cultural features of the ranch and specifying key points for
legislation, prepared for attendees of January 5, 1989 meeting and signed by Ron Klataske, Glickman Papers. See
also George Stanley, "Flint Hills Ranch to Become Preserve," Wichita Eagle-Beacon, 6 January 1989; John
Chambers, "Monumental Plans for Sprawling Ranch," Topeka Capital-Journal, 7 January 1989. These events are
also discussed, briefly, in the Klataske interview, 1 July 1998.
Kenneth Scott, "Home on the Range," The Gazette, 13 January 1989; "Prairie Monument: This Is the Time;
This Is the Place," editorial, Wichita Eagle-Beacon, 13 January 1989; "Prairie Park's Time Has Come," editorial,
Topeka Capital-Journal, 23 January 1989. See also FJB, "National Monument Deserves Support," editorial,
Grass and Grain, 24 January 1989; "Happy Birthday, Kansas," editorial, Topeka Capital-Journal, 29 January
1989; VLA, "Editorial," Chase County Leader-News, 2 February 1989; "Prairie Prelude: Grassroots Support
Monument," editorial, Wichita Eagle-Beacon, 25 February 1989; "A Monument in the Hills," editorial, The
Gazette, 2 March 1989.
William Robbins, "Stampede Is Feared on Range," New York Times, 8 February 1989; quote from Dirck Steimel,
"Park Plan Sparks Disputes on Prairie," Kansas City Star, 26 February, 1989; Hank Ernst, "Flint Hills Tug-of-
War," Kansas Farmer, 18 March 1989.
W. Lee Fowler, interview with Rebecca Conard, 11 May 1998, Cottonwood Falls, Kansas. Fowler is now
District Judge, Division 2, 5th Judicial District of Kansas.
W. Lee Fowler to Rep. Dan Glickman, 31 March 1989, with attached draft of "Proposed Legislation for the
Creation of the Flint Hills Prairie National Monument prepared by Flint Hills National Monument Committee,"
"Daring to Hope for Monument," editorial, Manhattan Mercury, 5 April 1989; "A Monument on the Prairie,"
editorial, Topeka Capital-Journal, 5 April 1989; "Prairie Progress," editorial, Wichita Eagle-Beacon, 29 April
1989; "Preserve Prairie," editorial, Salina Journal, 21 May 1989; quote from "Range War," Midway, Sunday
magazine section of the Topeka Capital-Journal, 9 April 1989.
"Testimony of Congressman Dan Glickman (KS) on Behalf of the Kansas Congressional Delegation Before the
House Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior," 25 April 1989, Glickman Papers.
Charles Magathan, Chairman, Kansas Grassroots Committee to Glickman, [undated letter stamped received] 20
April 1989; Magathan to Glickman, 19 April 1989, Glickman Papers.
"Glickman Notified of Plans for Prairie Park Study by Park Service," media release, 8 September 1989, Glickman
Nickie Flynn, "Ranch's Fate Cuts Rift Through Hills," Wichita Eagle, 1 October 1989. Lee Fowler concurs that
the media over-played the controversy, but he also places some of the blame on the local newspaper editor.
According to Fowler, "There appeared to be a lot more controversy than there really was if you talked to the
people on the street. There is no question in my mind that there were people who were really upset, but at the
same time I don't think it was near as bad as it was portrayed in the press. Especially the local paper." Fowler
interview,11 May 1998.
M.E. O'Neal, "Grassroots Association Disrupts Monument Hearing Here," Chase County Leader-News, 29
March 1990; "Grassroots Tactics Wound Chase County, Not Monument," Chase County Leader-News, 29 March
Baynes to Glickman, 2 May 1990, Glickman Papers.
"Park Service Will Update Monument Study Progress," Chase County Leader-News, 21 June 1990; "Park
Service Monument Meeting Tonight," Chase County Leader-News, 28 June 1990; "No More Black Eyes for
Chase County," Chase County Leader-News, 28 June 1990; "Park Service Says Its Parks Don't Have Buffer
Zones," Chase County Leader-News, 5 July 1990.
"Two-Part Harmony," editorial, The Emporia Gazette, 2 July 1990.
"Statement of Congressman Dan Glickman, Flint Hills Prairie National Monument Proposal," media release, 4
April 1991; Michael Bates, "Legislation Planned for 11,000-Acre Flint Hills National Park," AP release, 4 April
1991; Sherry [Ruffing] to Dan [Glickman], memorandum re: Tallgrass Monument Strategy, 8 April 1991; "Z Bar
Ranch Study Completed," news release by NPS, Midwest Regional Office, 30 April 1991, Glickman Papers. See
also Matthew Schofield, "Glickman Revives Proposal for Tallgrass Prairie Park," Kansas City Star, 5 April 1991;
Lori Linenberger, "Proposed Park Fuels Conflicts," Wichita Eagle, 5 April 1991; "Marnet: Flint Hills National
Monument Would be Kansas' No. 1 Attraction," editorial, Wichita Eagle, 6 April 1991, reprinted in Chase County
Leaader-News, 11 April 1991; "Prairie Park? Let's Try Again," editorial, Manhattan Mercury, 9 April 1991;
"Proposed Flint Hills Monument Pleases National Audubon Society," Russell Record, 11 April 1991.
Myrne [Roe] to Dan [Glickman] and other staff members, memorandum re: Z Bar, 30 April 1991, Glickman
Barry Massey, "Indecision Marks Plans for Z Bar," Topeka Capital-Journal, 11 May 1991.
 H.R. 2369, Glickman, 102nd Cong., 1st sess., 1991. See also "Statement by Congressman Dan Glickman on the
Establishment of the Flint Hills Prairie National Monument, 16 May 1991, Glickman Papers; "Visionary: Prairie
National Monument Would be a Gift to the Future," editorial, Wichita Eagle, 17 May 1991, "Meyers Lends
Support to Flint Hills Prairie National Monument," Chase County Leader-News, 30 May 1991; "Preserve a Piece
of Prairie," editorial, Topeka Capital-Journal, 3 June 1991.
Sherry [Ruffing] to Dan [Glickman], memorandum re: NPS testimony, 16 July 1991; "Statement of Denis Galvin,
Associate Director for Planning and Development, NPS, Department of the Interior, Before the Subcommittee on
National Parks and Public Lands...," 16 July 1991, Glickman Papers. In interviews with Steve Miller, a member of
the 1990-1991 NPS special resource study team, and with Lee Fowler, the consensus is that Galvin was
responding to orders that came from within the Bush administration. Within the NPS and among park proponents
locally, there was disappointment, but most people viewed this development as only a temporary setback.
Stephen Miller, interview with Rebecca Conard, 11 May 1998, Cottonwood Falls, Kansas; Fowler interview, 11
"Statement by Congressman Dan Glickman before the Subcommittee on National Parks and Public Lands in
support of H.R. 2369," 16 July 1991, Glickman Papers.
Prepared remarks submitted by all these individuals, either on July 16 or August 23, are contained in the
"Honorable Pat Roberts, Statement Before the House Interior Subcommittee on National Parks and Public
Lands Regarding the Proposed Prairie National Monument," 16 July 1991, Glickman Papers.
Action alert to "Grassroots Members" [undated but stamped as received 16 July 1991 in Rep. Glickman's
office], Glickman Papers.
Klataske to Glickman, 19 July 1991; Klataske to Dole, 19 July 1991, Glickman Papers.
Tom Webb, "Park Service Pulls Rug Out From Under Flint Hills plan," Wichita Eagle, 17 July 1991; Tom Webb,
"Finger-pointing Follows Setback for Prairie Park," Wichita Eagle, 20 July 1991; Brent Mitchell, "Prairie Park May
Not Find Home on Range," Washington Post, 27 July 1991.
Dana Neal, "County to Study Buying Z Bar ranch," Topeka Capital-Journal 20 July 1991; "Chase County
Studies Buying Part of Z Bar," Wichita Eagle, 3 August 1991; "Wells: Wouldn't Hesitate to Take Z Bar By
Eminent Domain," Chase County Leaders-News, 8 August 1991.
Angela Herrin and Tom Webb, "Hayden Backs Rejection of Flint Hills Park Plan," Wichita Eagle, 25 July 1991.
"Kansas Park Approved by Interior, but Faces State Opposition," Congressional Monitor 27:145 (26
September 1991), 4; Jack Thompson, "House Votes to Create Tallgrass Prairie Park," Kansas City Star, 16 October
Press releases, 12 November 1991 and 22 November 1991, Kassebaum Papers; Klataske interview, 1 July 1998;
Nancy Kassebaum Baker, former U. S. Senator from Kansas, telephone interview with Rebecca Conard, 29 August
Kassebaum sought to accomplish two things through this commission: one, to bring opposing groups
together to create a set of principles for land conservation and historic preservation/interpretation on the ranch,
and two, to find a way to bring the ranch under private ownership, with managment and operation according to
this set of principles. Kassebaum interview, 29 August 1998.
Jim Suber, "Ag Groups Announce Z Bar Plan," Topeka Capital-Journal, 22 November 1991; Steve Painter,
"Farm Groups Give a Little on Z Bar," Wichita Eagle, 22 November 1991; Jim Suber, "Cattlemen Willing to
Discuss Z Bar," Topeka Capital-Journal, 7 December 1991. See also Mike Horak, interview with Susan Hess, 5
May 1998, Alexandria, Virginia.
"Prairie Park Proposal Brings Sides Closer," Kansas City Star, 11 December 1991; "A Deal? Can Agriculture
Interest Groups Compromise on Flint Hills Park?, editorial, Wichita Eagle, 11 December 1991.
"Vision Statement," facsimile transmission from Kassebaum to Glickman, 16 January 1992, Glickman Papers.
See also "Kassebaum Says Agreement Reached on Preserve," (Pittsburg) Morning Sun, 18 January 1992;
"Groups Agree to Form Prairie Foundation," Fort Scott Tribune, 17 January 1992; "Positive News About Z Bar"
(editorial); Manhattan Mercury, 30 January 1992; "Prairie Pact," editorial, Hutchinson News, 25 January 1992;
"First Step," editorial, Wichita Eagle, 25 January 1992.
Press releases, Sen. Nancy Landon Kassebaum, 4 March 1992 and 14 April 1992, Kassebaum Papers. See also
"Fowler is Cottonwood Falls Choice for Monument Foundation," Chase County Leader-News 20 February 1992;
"Flint Hills Park Has Future on the Line With Trustees," editorial, Chase County Leader-News 12 March 1992.
Fowler interview, 11 May 1998; Horak interview, 5 May 1998; Tom Webb, "Progress Coming Slow for Prairie
Preserve," Wichita Eagle, 29 November 1992; "Slow going: Inaction Threatens Park in Flint Hills," editorial,
Wichita Eagle, 6 December 1992.
"Glickman Gives Z Bar Commission A Push," Chase County Leaders-News, 3 December 1992.
Tom Webb, "Prairie Park Gets Administration OK," Wichita Eagle, 4 May 1993; "Babbitt Backs Park on
Prairie," Topeka Capital-Journal, 5 May 1993.
Mike Horak to Lee Fowler, Bill Kassebaum, and John Oswald, memorandum re: Z-Bar Ranch, 24 May 1993,
TPNP Administrative Files.
"Spring Hill Z Bar Ranch, Inc. Vision Statement and Development Plan, adopted by Board of Trustees, 9 June
1993," TPNP Administrative Files.
Horak interview, 5 May 1998; Fowler interview, 11 May 1998. See also "Z Bar Future Uncertain," editorial,
Topeka Capital-Journal, 7 January 1994; Tom Webb, "Attempt to Buy Z Bar Fails," headline story, Wichita
Eagle, 6 January 1994; Stephen Martino, "Z Bar Board Rejects Bank's Ranch Offer," Topeka Capital-Journal, 6
January 1994. See also "Spring Hill/Z Bar Directors Reject Conditions Placed on Purchase of Chase County
Ranch," press release, Spring Hill Z Bar Ranch, Inc., 5 January 1994 Glickman Papers; "Kassebaum Disappointed
that Bank is Unwilling to Accept Offer on Z Bar Ranch," press release, Sen. Nancy Landon Kassebaum, 5 January
1994, Kassebaum Papers and Glickman Papers.
Sen. Nancy Kassebaum, "Z Bar Never Was for Sale," Topeka Capital-Journal, 9 January 1994. This, too, was
a critical turning point; however, Dudley Alexander, who appears to have been the key player in this episode, was
not interviewed. Information about what transpired was learned second-hand from others who were not present
at discussions between Alexander and representatives from Spring Hill Z Bar Ranch, Inc. According to Ron
Klataske, the discussions were not cordial in tone, and Alexander had strong personal reservations about the
motives of some members of the new ranch foundation, which, in actuality, was a fragile coalition at that point.
Additionally, Alexander felt that the property was worth the asking price and that it was inappropriate for the
foundation to offer less. From Kassebaum's perspective, Alexander, who sat in on the foundation's board
meetings, was well aware of where the entity was headed and might have been more forthcoming with the group
earlier in the process. In any event, everyone took the decision in stride because by that time there was enough
commitment from both sides to keep working toward resolution. Klataske interview, 1 July 1998; Kassebaum
interview, 29 August 1998.
Fowler interview, 11 May 1998.
Kassebaum interview, 29 August 1998.
Paul Pritchard, interview with Rebecca Conard, 4 May 1998, Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve, Strong City,
Kansas; Laura Loomis, interview with Susan Hess, 6 May 1998, Washington, D.C.; Klataske interview, 1 July
1998. According to Pritchard, Boatman's put pressure on him to raise the money quickly because it had another
offer "on the table." Pritchard ended up borrowing part of the money from the NPCA and the remainder from a
commercial bank. Loomis speculates that the bank's other offer came from Ed Bass, who subsequently donated
$1 million, which NPT applied to the purchase, and negotiated a 35-year cattle-grazing lease on the ranch. Other
individuals declined to comment about the other purchase offer tendered to Boatman's in 1994.
Paul Pritchard, NPT Chairman to National Park Trust Board, Members, Other Interested Parties, confidential
memorandum re: Tallgrass Prairie "Talking Points," 28 February 1994, Glickman Papers.
"Glickman Optimistic About Prospects for Flint Hills Prairie Preserve," media release, 3 March 1994; "National
Park Trust Gets Option to Buy Z Bar Ranch," AP news story, 4 March 1994, Glickman Papers; see also
"Kassebaum Sees Initiative as Opportunity to Protect the Z Bar Ranch," press release Sen. Nancy Kassebaum, 3
March 1994, Kassebaum Papers. Subsequent news stories stated that NPT had agreed to pay $4.79 million for the
ranch; see Maria S. Fisher, "Babbitt Says Plans for Z-Bar Still Developing," Great Bend Tribune, 29 April 1994,
and Suzanne Perez Tobias, "National Park Trust Buys Z Bar Ranch," Wichita Eagle, 4 June 1994.
Briefing Paper for Secretary Babbitt, 19 April 1994, TPNP Administrative Files; Maria S. Fisher, "Babbitt Says
Plans for Z Bar Still Developing," Great Bend Tribune, 29 April 1994.
Tobias, "National Park Trust Buys Z Bar Ranch," Matthew Schofield, "Deal Is Struck for Z Bar Ranch to
Become a Park," Kansas City Star, 4 June 1994.
Pritchard interview, 4 May 1998; Horak interview, 5 May 1998; Loomis interview, 6 May 1998; Kassebaum
interview, 29 August 1998.
H.R. 5000 and S. 2412, 103rd Cong., 2nd sess., 1994.
"Z Bar Bills Introduced in Congress," Wichita Eagle, 21 August 1994; Curt Anderson, "Delegation United
Behind Z Bar Ranch Legislation," (Pittsburg) Morning Sun, 20 August 1994.
Tom Webb, "Another Delay in Z Bar Saga," Wichita Eagle, 29 September 1994; Jake Thompson, "It May Be
Now or Never for a Prairie Park," Kansas City Star, 29 January 1995.
The National Park Trust and the National Park and Conservation Association had a complementary
relationship. NPT made the actual purchase of property, incurred the bank mortgage, and assumed management
of the property. NPCA helped underwrite the project, assisted with the legislative effort, and helped fund raise.
Loomis interview, 6 May 1998; Bruce Craig, interview with Susan Hess, 4 May 1998, Harpers Ferry. See also
"Texan Pays $2 Million for Grazing Rights," Topeka Capital-Journal, 10 March 1995.
Barbara Zurhellen, preserve director and former director of interpretation, TPNP, interview with Rebecca
Conard, 4 May 1998, Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve, Strong City, Kansas. Paul Pritchard, Laura Loomis, and
Bruce Craig also gave Zurhellen much of the credit for helping to ease tension locally.
Horak interview, 5 May 1998; Loomis interview, 6 May 1998; Craig interview, 4 May 1998; Linda Potter,
interview with Susan Hess, 5 May 1998, Washington, D.C.
S. 695 and H.R. 1449, 104th Cong., 1st sess., 1995. See also "Bill Aims to Limit U.S. Role in Prairie Park,"
Kansas City Star, 7 April 1995.
Kassebaum interview, 29 August 1998.
Horak interview, 5 May 1998; "Senate Adds Prairie Park Proposal to Bill," Kansas City Star, 26 March 1996; "Z
Bar Park Stalls as Senate Sets Bill Aside," Wichita Eagle, 28 March 1996.
Horak interview, 5 May 1998. See also Tom Webb, "Tallgrass Prairie Park Clears Senate Hurdle," Wichita
Eagle, 2 May 1996; "Z Bar Bill Passes Senate," Chase County Leader-News, 9 May 1996; "Parks Bill Approved
by House," Kansas City Star, 29 September 1996; Evan Katz, "Senate Votes to Preserve Kansas Prairie," headline
story, Topeka Capital-Journal, 4 October 1996.
"Prairie Preserve Becomes Reality," Kansas City Star, 13 November 1996.
 Section 1007 (b), Title X, P.L. 104-333; Charter, Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve Advisory Committee, 22
September 1997. Terms of the Advisory Committee vary between three to five years, and committee members can
be repainted. There is no statutory termination date for the committee.
Horak interview, 5 May 1998.
John Sowl, NPS Midwest Support Office, telephone interview with Rebecca Conard, 14 May 1998.
Kassebaum interview, 29 August 1998.