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Helen F. Holmes papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: WHC-M-2572

Scope and Contents


Historian and politician. Subject files (1876-1996) containing Helen Holmes's research notes and materials regarding the history of Guthrie, Oklahoma, and Logan County, Oklahoma. Also included in the collection are research materials on the history of Abell, Cashion, Cimarron City, Coulter, Coyle, Crescent, Langston, and Mulhall, Oklahoma. Specialized subject files include research materials on historic homes in and around Guthrie and on cemeteries, schools, and churches in Guthrie and Logan County, as well as annual narrative reports of extension work (1935-1961) reporting the activities of African-American 4-H clubs in Logan County.


  • Creation: 1876 - 1996

Language of Material


Restrictions on Access

On June 26, 2023, the Western History Collections began a preservation project that has made many of its collections unavailable for a period of time. This collection is among the materials temporarily unavailable. Please contact Western History Collections if you wish to be added to a contact list to be notified when this collection becomes available.

Open for public research.

Biographical / Historical

Helen Freudenberger Holmes was a Democratic Party politician who worked many years in local and state Democratic Party races, and served both as Councilwoman on the Guthrie City Council and as Mayor. In addition, Holmes wrote a history of Logan County and historical articles on early day Oklahoma settlement for the Guthrie News-Leader newspaper. This collection contains subject files and printed materials. The subject files include Holmes' research notes on topics relating to the city of Guthrie, Logan County, and the early development of Oklahoma. Other cities and towns which are covered include Abell, Cashion, Cimarron City, Coulter, Coyle, Crescent, Langston, Mulhall, etc. There are numerous files concerning historic homes primarily in the Guthrie area. Special sections cover cemeteries, schools and churches in Guthrie and Logan County. The subject files contain correspondence, brochures, news clippings, articles and original documents as well as copies and facsimiles, etc. The printed materials contain various items such as city and county directories, local histories, historical articles, recipe books, letter to Norma Heilman and Carrie Tallman. Also, the Holmes Collection contains narrative annual reports of African-American 4-H clubs in Logan and Oklahoma Counties.

• Helen Freudenberger Holmes was born on a farm near Pleasant Valley, Oklahoma, December 16, 1915, the eighth and youngest child of German immigrants

• Received 1st Place, General Intelligence, Oklahoma State Interscholastic Meet, May 5, 1932

• Graduated from Coyle High School as valedictorian, May 1932, at the young age of 16 years

• Received 2nd Place, English Literature, Oklahoma Interscholastic Meet, May 5, 1932

• Chi Delta Phi, January 23, 1935

• Member, Player's Club, a club which performed plays, 1934-1935

• Graduated Pi Kappa Phi, May 22, 1936

• Star reporter, Daily O'Collegian for school year, 1935-1936

• Graduated with honors from Oklahoma A&M College, May 25, 1936, at the age of 20, with a B.S. in English, with minors in education and journalism

• Became editor of Maude Daily Enterprise, June-September, 1936

• Assistant, Oklahoma A&M College Publications Department, October 1, 1936- September 1939

• Promoted article on Ed Gallagher, Oklahoma A&M wrestling coach, to LIFE magazine, which later featured him, 1939

• Featured three times per week as host of alive radio broadcast on a Tulsa radio station

• Graduated from the University of Wisconsin, June 17, 1940, with a Master's in Agriculture Journalism as a University Scholar

• Returned in 1940 to teach journalism at Oklahoma A&M College in the Department of Publications

• Member of the National Auxiliary United Spanish War Veterans, 1942 • Husband died suddenly in 1962, leaving her to rear her children who were all under the age of 9 years, remained on the farm and in the farming business for 10 years

• County 4-H and FFA leader

• PTA leader

• Moved to Guthrie, Oklahoma in 1972 to be within walking distance of her church and a grocery store, since she never learned to drive a car

• Docent for the Oklahoma Territorial Museum, member and past president

• Extension Homemakers

• Lutheran Women's Missionary League, member and past president

• Teacher, Adult Bible Class, Zion Lutheran Church, Guthrie, Oklahoma

• Logan County League of Democrat Women, member and past president and treasurer

• Editor and principle author of two volumes of the Logan County History, in 1979 and 1980, a task taking her three years to complete

• Wrote a booklet on Historical Guthrie Homes

• Became a member of Guthrie City Council, 1979 and later Mayor of Guthrie from 1979 to 1981

• 89er Celebration committee

• Chairman of the Logan County Council on Aging, which she was the impetus for starting

• founding member and first president for the Friends of Guthrie Public Library

• Wrote the historical section for the Guthrie Daily Leader, 89er Edition, for approximately 13 years

• Logan County Historical Society Award

• Guthrie Museum Association Award


8 Cubic Feet (8 cubic ft.)