Table of Contents
Collection Overview +/-
Collection Inventory +/-
series: Diaries, Autobiography, Day Books
box 1: Personal
folder 1: Diary (1918-1971)
Charles Kelly began his diary entries on January 1, 1918, while an employee of the Tribune Printing Company, Great Falls, Montana. Kelly expresses his philosophies on religion, war, politics and politicians, music, etc., fairly regularly until July 25, 1918, when he bids "goodbye" to Great Falls and goes to war. The diary resumes in Salt Lake City, August 25, 1920, where Kelly is again in the printing business. In 1924 he buys a ten percent interest in the Western Publishing Company and feels, for the first time in his life, settled and secure. From 1925 diary entries become an annual summary of the year's events covering family, business, exploration, river running, writing, and art. Although the major part of Kelly's writings were published between 1930 and 1938, he writes very little of this accomplishment in his diary. In January 1944, after a lapse of three years, he records his move to Fruita, Utah, where he hopes to write and paint. In 1950 he took a civil service examination and became superintendent of Capitol Reef National Monument in the United States Park Service where he served until 1959. He writes on March 24, 1959: "I was retired from the park service on Feb. 20, just after my 70th birthday. Probably it is a good thing because my eyesight is very bad and general health low." Diary entries (or summaries) continue irregularly until the final one of March 10, 1971. Charles Kelly died April 19, 1971.
folder 2: Autobiography--"Preacher's Son," by Charles Kelly
In a diary entry dated August 20, 1936, Charles Kelly writes: "The old man is dead. I've waited for a good many years to write that good news, and at last it has come.... It comes at an appropriate time, just as I was about to begin working on the final draft of 'Preacher's Son.' I intend to finish it this winter and try to get it published." "Preacher's Son" is Kelly's autobiography--the story of Charles, his four brothers, and their mother, and their struggle for survival living with a fanatical husband and father, the preacher. He tells of the starvation diets, the made-over clothing, the begging for donations and food, the ridicule of other children, and the hatred which finally built up against the father because he believed "the Lord will provide." Kelly was only thirteen years of age when he claimed to be "an infidel." He had by this time been unable to reconcile his father as a man of God with the unreasoning cruelty and dishonesty of the "preacher" toward his wife and children. Kelly concludes his autobiography with his philosophy of prophets, men of God, and religion generally. The manuscript was never published.
folder 3: Day Books
Three in number.
folder 4: Diary Notes of River Trips (1932-1942)
Log of Colorado River trip, 1932; Colorado River trip, 1932 (Hoffman Birney's account); Yampa River trip, 1937; Colorado River Expedition, 1938; Salmon River trip, 1939; Colorado River trip, 1942.
folder 5: Taped Interview (1969)
Transcript of a taped interview with Charles Kelly conducted by Everett L. Cooley at the Kelly home, 124 S Street, Salt Lake City, Utah, April 30, 1969. Kelly talks about his books: (1930), written and printed by himself in his own print shop; (1936), also printed by himself; (1937), written with Maurice L. Howe and printed by Kelly; and (1938), also printed by Kelly.
folder 6: Christmas Cards (1929)
Designed, painted, and printed by Charles and Harriette Kelly.
folder 7: Lepard Family Genealogy
Flora Lepard--mother of Charles Kelly.
folder 8: Charles and Harriette Kelly
Awards, memorials, tributes, biographical sketch, obituaries, etc.
The same filing arrangement kept by Charles Kelly has been retained. Box 2 contains personal correspondence, much of which was with authors who were friends of Kelly, and includes such individuals as Frank Beckwith, Hoffman Birney, Juanita Brooks, Maurice Howe, Otis "Dock" Marston, and Dale L. Morgan. These letters are an exchange of information relating to Kelly's books and the research conducted by these individuals. The correspondence is arranged alphabetically and in the case of the names listed above, abstracts of the letters have been written and the names and items indexed. Box 3 is a collection of correspondence received after Kelly's books were published and mainly includes additional information relating to each book. This correspondence is arranged chronologically under the title of the book. Much of this correspondence was a result of Kelly's soliciting, in the preface of his books, additional materials to be incorporated in possible future editions.
box 2: Correspondence--Personal
This listing only contains a sampling of the contents in box 2.
folder 3: Beckwith, Frank (1935-1951)
Between Frank Beckwith, Charles Kelly, and Earl L. Smith relating to the Mountain Meadows Massacre--mainly the Fancher-Baker and Smith-Baker wagon trains. Three letters to Charles and Harriette Kelly from Mary Beckwith are included.
folder 4: Birney, Hoffman (1932-1935)
Between Birney, Kelly, and Naomi Shumway in a rousing attack and defense of Kelly and Birney's book .
folder 5: Brooks, Juanita (1941-1955)
A running discussion of Mountain Meadows Massacre and those involved; namely, Jacob Hamblin and his whereabouts during the massacre, John D. Lee as "a victim of circumstances," and notes relating to the John D. Lee Diaries. Both Juanita Brooks and Charles Kelly were researching the Mountain Meadows Massacre at this time.
folder 6: Cooley, Everett L. (1970-1974)
Relating to Kelly's collection, his taped interview in 1970, and letters to 0. "Dock" Marston and Ira D. S. Kelly concerning the Charles Kelly papers.
folder 11: Howe, Maurice (1936, 1938)
folder 13: Kelly, Charles (1946-1971)
Discussing Elza Lay and the Greenwood desert (or trail).
folder 17-18: Marston, Otis "Dock" (1968-1972)
To Charles and Harriette Kelly on a variety of subjects: Colorado River expeditions, river runners, books and writings of Kelly and Marston, etc.
folder 19: Morgan, Dale L. (1941-1970)
December 1, 1941: Salt Lake City, Morgan writes Kelly regarding Etienne Provost, the Aiken Massacre, and Antonine Robidoux; March 27, 1942: Salt Lake City, brief notes on William Hickman and Orrin Porter Rockwell; January 15, 1943: Arlington, Virginia, Morgan cites errors in ; December 14, 1943: Morgan writes J. R. Korns citing the same errors listed above and sent to Kelly; June 25, 1944: Arlington, Virginia, a discussion of the Stansbury journals in relation to the Hasting road and the Fremont trail of 1845; April 8, 1946: No heading, Morgan writes of his "gold mine" in the diary of Sublette and Stewart's hunting expedition of 1843 kept by M. F. Fields. The diary includes information on Miles Goodyear, the Cheyenne Indian Robbery, William Lewis Sublette, and William H. Ashley; April 12, 1946: No heading, Morgan copies a letter of James F. Reid of the Donner Party, written at Fort Bridger, 1846; July 25 and 26, 1946: No heading, Morgan calls this a "communique on the subject of Miles Goodyear" wherein he cites and corrects errors in Kelly's book; December 2, 1946: Arlington, Virginia, more information on Miles Goodyear which Morgan relates to J. R. Korns and Charles Kelly; May 22, 1949: Salt Lake City, Morgan mails types copies of a diary of the Donner Party and discusses entries with Korns and Kelly. Other enclosures with the diary include typed copies of a letter from T. Popp Long, Fort Bridger, July 19, 1846, and published in the November 28, 1846; an unidentified letter dated July 23, 1846, at Fort Bridger, published in , November 7, 1846; and a memorandum on Skull Valley mileages made by Morgan and sent to Kelly to be checked; February 5, 1970: Morgan has checked census records at Bancroft Library and writes census information on Lansford W. Hastings, Frank Greenwood, James Bridger, and Lewis Vasquez.
folder 24: Unidentified Correspondent
A letter from a madam who had lived and flourished in Cheyenne, Denver, and one other unnamed place by a railroad. She had known the Basset family of Brown's Park and writes of Ann Bassett and her husband "Hi" Bernard.
series: Manuscripts--Published and Unpublished
box 4: Outlaw Trail
Manuscript (revised and enlarged for 1959 edition), research materials.
box 5: "Mountain Man: The Story of Miles Goodyear"
Unpublished manuscript, research materials.
box 6: "Marching to Zion"
Unpublished manuscript (the story of the handcart companies--historical fiction) research materials.
box 7: "Sand and Sagebrush, Little Journeys to Odd Corners of the Desert"
Unpublished manuscript of twenty-nine short stories about people and experiences on the desert. Including The Desert, The Great Salt Desert, Jack's Place, Owl Springs, The Fish Miner, They Passed Here, Mountain Meadows, Skull Valley, The Dirty Devil, Mustang Al, Hosteen Pishlaki, Home on the Desert, Rainbow in Stone, King of the Desert, Crossing of the Fathers, Sevitoats, Lonely Dell, Desert Sailor, Monument Valley, Black Rock Cave, Hoskinini Begay, Gateway to the West, Romance on the San Juan, Queen Ann, The Lost Josephine Mine, Hole-in-the-Wall, Desert Picture Gallery, A Road Paved with Gems
Lure of the Desert.
box 8: "Utah's Black Friday: History of the Mountain Meadows Massacre of 1857" (1857)
box 9: "Utah's Black Friday: History of the Mountain Meadows Massacre of 1857" (1857)
folder 1: Cradlebaugh, Judge John
A statement from the Minute Book and Naturalization Record, 1855-1865, Provo, Utah, April 4, 1859 (WPA copy). Mormon attitudes toward the federal courts.
folder 2: Dame, William Horne
folder 3: Forney, Jacob
Indian Agent for Utah Territory who was directed by the Secretary of the Interior to locate surviving children of the Mountain Meadows Massacre and appointed guardian of same, June 27, 1857 (WPA copy).
folder 4: Haight, Isaac C.
Miscellaneous notes and biographical material.
folder 5: Higbee, John S. (Snort)
A manuscript of a participant in the Mountain Meadows Massacre.
folder 6-8: Lee, John D.
Notes and quotes; trials 1875 and 1876 from Minute Book Second Judicial District Court of Utah, 1874-1877; confession.
folder 9: "Mountain Meadows Massacre"
Published in the , Goodspeed Publishing Company, 1889.
folder 10: Route of Fancher Party through Utah
folder 11-14: Miscellaneous Notes
folder 15: Mountain Meadows Massacre Monument Dedicated (September 1932)
folder 16-18: Newspapers--California (1857-1859)
Typed copies of articles appearing in California newspapers.
folder 19: Newspapers--California (1857-1877)
folder 20: Newspapers--Utah (1877)
folder 21: Newspapers--Utah (1859-1860)
folder 22: Mountain Meadows Massacre Poetry
Three poems all titled Mountain Meadows Massacre (no authors).
folder 23: Charles Kelly's Index to His Research Materials
No longer useable as an index because of rearrangement of materials to facilitate filing order, however, kept for notes which may have some value.
box 10: Published Articles
folder 1-3: Published Articles by Charles Kelly
"Finding the Proverbial Needle on Manlys Trail to Death Valley," , Volume 25, Number 9, September, 1962; "Disappointment Island," , Volume 9, Number 2, Winter, 1972; "Queen Ann of Brown's Hole," , Volume 6, Number 2, Winter, 1969; "Hermit of the Middle Fork," , Volume 17, Number 3, January-February, 1970; "The Man Who Impersonated Butch Cassidy," , Volume 17, Number 2, November-December, 1969; "Death on the Desert," , Volume 19, Number 2, November-December, 1971; "Relics on the Donner Trail," , Volume 3, Number 5, February, 1970; "At Eighty-Three He Is an Explorer," , Volume 211, Number 45, May 6, 1939; photographs of Monument Valley, by Charles Kelly, , Volume 85, Number 2207, August 10, 1929; photographs of Salt Flats, by Charles Kelly, , Volume 187, Number 5035, October 19, 1935; "The Saga of 'China Polly,'" , September-October, 1970; "Chief Hoskaninni," , Volume 21, Number 3, July, 1953; "Gold Seekers on the Hastings Cutoff," , Volume 20, Number 1, January, 1952; "The Journal of Robert Chalmers," , Volume 20, Number 1, January, 1952.
folder 4-5: Published Articles--Not Charles Kelly's
"The Ira J. Willis Guide to the Gold Mines," edited by Irene D. Poden, reprint from , Volume XXXII, Number 3, September, 1953; "An Ancient Cave in American Fork Canyon," by George H. Hansen and William Lee Stokes, , Volume 18; "The Grand Canyon Boat Parade," by Otis Dock Marston, , Volume 4, Number 1, March, 1971; "For Water-level Rails Along the Colorado River," by 0. Dock Marston, , Volume XLVI, Number 4, Fall, 1969l; "Analytical Interpretations of Petroglyphs," by Kathleen Whitaker, (no date on this copied section); "To Utah by Hand: The Diary of Twiss Bermingham, Mormon Immigrant," with explanatory notes by Samuel Taylor Moore, , Volume 23, Number 1, July, 1937.
box 11: Unpublished Articles and Stories by Charles Kelly
Many of these manuscripts were written for his Young Pioneers collection.
folder 1: "Aneth"
The story of Parethenia Hyde Barton Dalley and her friendship with Chief Posey.
folder 2: "A Boy's Life Among the Indians"
Nick Wilson's experiences with the Indians.
folder 3: "The California Trail"
A story of Jacob Harlan as a boy and young man and his travels to California.
folder 4: "The Great Diamond Hoax"
The diamond swindle of 1871-1872 originating in San Francisco and ending at Diamond Mountain near Vernal, Utah.
folder 5: "The Greenwood Cutoff and Names Hill"
Charles Kelly travels over the route Caleb Greenwood chose in 1844 when he guided a train of emigrants to California.
folder 6: "Hermit of Highwoods"
A visit with a hermit of Highwoods, Montana.
folder 7: "History of Capitol Reef National Monument and Vicinity"
folder 8: "Hoskaninni: A Story of the Desert"
Hoskininni Begay tells Charles Kelly, in an interview, the history of Navajo Indian Chief Hoskininni, his father.
folder 9: "Hoskaninni Begay"
Charles Kelly met Hoskaninni Begay when he was eighty-three years old and spent a week with him to get the histories of Chief Hoskininni and Hoskininni Begay.
folder 10: "I Took to the Desert"
An essay by Kelly expressing some of his philosophies and why he "took to the desert."
folder 11: "Jack Watson's Blind Valley"
A hermit in the Confusion Mountains of western Utah.
folder 12: "Kit Carson's Boy"
The story of William Drannan, the adopted son of Kit Carson.
folder 13: "Navajo Faith"
A rain dance and results, as seen by Charles Kelly in Monument Valley.
folder 14: "A Nine-year-old Stage Driver"
A runaway boy becomes a stagedriver at age nine.
folder 15: "Old Greenwood"
Caleb Greenwood consents to guide the Stevens-Townsend-Murphy Party to California, 1844.
folder 16: "Propheteers"
The story of the sugar industry in Utah.
folder 17: "Prospectors Are Like That"
Kelly helps to rescue a prospector in Glen Canyon.
folder 18: "The Reason Why"
Charles Kelly's discourse on religion.
folder 19: "Snowbound in the Mountains"
The story of the Donner Party.
folder 20: "The Speckled Nigger"
An interview with "Speck" who had been born a slave in West Virginia and through a variety of experiences spent his last years in or near Brown's Hole.
folder 21: "Steamboat in the Desert"
The story of Asa C. Beckwith, father of Frank Beckwith, resident of Evanston, Wyoming.
folder 22: "Thirty Minutes"
The tale of a hero in World War I.
folder 23: "Treasure Hunting on the Salt Desert"
Searching the desert for treasures abandoned by the Donner Party.
folder 24: "Wagons in the Snow"
The Donner Party story.
folder 25: "Wagon Wheels"
The Donner Party story.
folder 26: "Wolverton's Gold Mine"
E. T. Wolverton's attempt to mine gold in the Henry Mountains.
folder 27: "A Young Pioneer of 1843" (1843)
The story of Jesse A. Applegate and his trip to Oregon in 1843.
folder 28: An Introduction to "Young Pioneers"
series: Miscellaneous Research Materials--People and Subjects
box 12: Miscellaneous Research--People
folder 1: Beadle, John Hanson
Extracts made by Frank Beckwith from Beadle's .
folder 2: Bean, George Washington
Extracts from journal, 1852-1856.
folder 3: Beckwith, Frank
"Reminiscences of Frank A. Beckwith," by Charles Kelly, and other miscellaneous items.
folder 4: Boreman, Judge Jacob S.
A list of items in the Boreman Collection at Huntington Library.
folder 5: Gibbs, Josiah F.
Notes taken from the Gibbs pamphlet on the Mountain Meadows Massacre, an interview with Charles Kelly and Frank Beckwith, etc.
folder 6: Ginn, John L. (1857-1858)
Journal relating his version of Mountain Meadows Massacre.
folder 7: Greenwood, Caleb
Notes from journals and other miscellaneous items.
folder 8: Greenwood, Caleb
The story of Old Greenwood by Roscoe L. Clark.
folder 9: Haight, Isaac (1842-1860)
Extracts from journal.
folder 10: Hildebrand, Robert B.
An interview with Hildebrand, Charles Kelly, and J. R. Korns. Additional notes on Hildebrand.
folder 11: Julien, Denis
folder 12: KlingenSmith, Philip
Sworn statement of KlingenSmith about Mountain Meadows Massacre.
folder 13: Lee, John D. (1846-1859)
Extracts from John D. Lee Journal, Number 6; a brief history of J. D. Lee (2 pages); and galley for , edited by Charles Kelly.
folder 14: Martineau, James H. (1857)
Letter to Albert Carrington.
folder 15: Matthews, Edward James
Excerpts from , by E. J. Matthews.
folder 16: Mitchell, William
Notes on Mitchell's search for gold on the Colorado River.
folder 17: Nutter, Katherine
Brief biographical note.
folder 18: Rishel, William D.
Bicycling articles and autobiographical sketch.
folder 19: Rockwell, Orrin Porter
folder 20: Simmons, Louis
First husband of Adeline Carson, daughter of Kit Carson--research notes.
folder 21: Smith, George A. (1857)
Remarks given in Bowery.
folder 22: Stansbury, Captain Howard (1849-1851)
Payroll (Survey of Great Salt Lake).
folder 23: Sublette, William L. and M. G. Sublette
Miscellaneous notes taken from Wyeth, Ferris, Niderer, Talbot, Clyman, et al.
folder 24: Wight, Lyman
Texas colony of Mormons.
folder 25: Young, Brigham (1862)
Governor's Message to the First General Assembly of the State of Deseret.
box 13: Miscellaneous Research Materials--Subjects
folder 1: Bibliography of Dale L. Morgan's Publications
folder 2: Bibliography of Charles Kelly's Publications
folder 3: Book Lists of Charles Kelly
folder 4: Book Reviews by Charles Kelly
folder 5-6: Book Reviews of Kelly's Books
folder 7: California (1857-1858)
Notices of volunteer groups from California formed to assist the United States government in the Utah War--these included riflemen, rangers, and cavalry.
folder 8: California (1851)
Petition to Congress from California emigrants "to abolish the present territorial government of Utah and establish a military government in its stead, sustained by a strong garrison." Copied from .
folder 9: Council of Twelve Apostles
A letter from the Council of Twelve at Winter Quarters to Elders Hyde, Pratt, and Taylor in England, describing "our great city."
folder 10: Donner Party
folder 11: Holy Murder (1934)
Contract of publication with G. P. Putnam.
folder 12: Maps
Used in Kelly's research with his lines and notes.
folder 13: Massacres and Murders
folder 14: Miscellaneous Research Materials
folder 15: Miscellany (1845-1975)
First day of issue cancellation on Range Conservation stamp, Western Printing Company blotter, photocopy of cover of Hastings , proclamation of Governor L. L. Bowen of the Territory of Jefferson, Denver.
folder 16: Mormonism Exposed
folder 17-19: Newspaper Clippings
folder 20: Through America
Photomechanical copy of Chapter 10, Porter Rockwell and Brigham Young.
box 14: Card Index
series: Books by Charles Kelly
box 15: Books
Salt Lake City: Western Printing Company, 1930. Second edition 1969; (with Hoffman Birney). New York: Minton, Balch & Company, 1934; . Salt Lake City: Western Printing Company, 1936; (with Dale Morgan). Second revised edition. Georgetown, California: Talisman Press, 1965; (with Maurice L. Howe). Salt Lake City: Western Printing Company, 1937; . Salt Lake City: Western Printing Company, 1938. Second revised and enlarged edition, New York: Devin-Adair Company, 1959; (edited by Charles Kelly). Salt Lake City: Western Printing Company, 1938.
series: Field Notes of Robert Brewster Stanton and Albert King Thurber Journal
"Notes of an instrumental examination of the canons of the Colorado River of the West for a Railway Line from the coal fields of Colorado, to the Pacific Coast." Stanton's note of explanation states: "The notes in this book are intended to cover my personal observations and such points as are not covered by the instrumental work of the surveying party. . . ." These four volumes deal mainly with camp arrangements, personal reactions to situations, personalities, etc.
box 16: Field Notes of Robert Brewster Stanton, Civil Engineer, and Journal of Albert King Thurber
volume 1-2: Field Notes (1889 May 10-1889 December 26)
First and second expeditions. Volumes 1 and 2 are bound together. "... for a preliminary survey and examination of a R.R. route from Grand Junction, Colorado to the Gulf of California and San Diego, by way of the Colorado River and through the Grand Canyon. ..." This railroad would be called the Denver, Colorado Canon and Pacific Railroad Company. In July, at the end of the first expedition, at the mouth of Paria Creek, Stanton concluded: "From the head of the Colorado to the San Juan a railway can be constructed with no more difficulty than along any mountain slope and with much less difficulty in some respects--for by stealing in some places the line from the river, a most excellent alignment can be gotten with a grade not to exceed 16 2/3 ft. per mile or 3/10 of one percent."
volume 3-4: Field Notes (1890 January 23-May 02)
Volumes 3 and 4 bound together. They recount the exploration from the head of Grand Canyon in relation to the building of the railroad. The notes in these two volumes are more general than in volumes 1-2, giving discriptions of the walls, the rapids, the temperatures, etc. In all four volumes, Stanton refers to his topographical notebook and records the photographs taken by number. On September 6, 1890, Stanton wrote a letter to Mr. H. B. Chamberlin, president of the Denver Colorado Canon and Pacific Railroad, expressing surprise and dismay that the railroad company had never filed with the commissioner of the General Land Office, Washington, D.C. This was necessary to establish recognition of the company so rights-of-way could be acquired. Stanton states: "Still on my return to Denver last April, after having proved the entire feasability of the route, I was not satisfied--although I did not dream of anything of this nature. . . . This whole matter is a shameful piece of business from beginning to end." The field notes end with the letter.
volume 1: Journal of Albert King Thurber
Albert King Thurber was born 7 April 1826, in Foster, Rhode Island. The early portion of his journal tells of his life as a farm boy and then as a combmaker. Two of the main events recorded in his journal are his trip West en route to the California goldfields in 1849 and his conversion to Mormonism in Salt Lake City in that same year. His conversion postponed his California trek until November when he and a number of others accompanied Amasa Lyman to investigate the goldfields. He married Thirza Berry soon after his return from California and together they began a life of pioneering in Utah County. Thurber participated in the brief Indian War of 1853. In 1862 their first daughter was born in Spanish Fork, where he remained as bishop until 1873 when he was called to help settle Sevier County because of his abilities in communication and negotiation with the Indians. He settled in Richfield in 1874. In 1888 he died in Ephraim, Sanpete County. Thurber's journal is followed by a "Geneological Record of Albert King Thurber, furnished by R. T. Thurber," "A Brief Biographical Sketch of Albert King Thurber," and "Notes by Charles Kelly" which praises Thurber as an explorer of the territory between Sevier Valley and the Colorado River--explorations that took place after the account in the journal.
Biographical Note/Historical Note +/-
Born at Cedar Springs, Michigan, on 3 February 1889, Charles Kelly was the oldest of six children. His father, a Baptist minister who started a religious movement of his own, set up a print shop to publish literature pertaining to his newly organized religious cult. Because of this, Charles learned the printing business at a very young age. At seventeen he went to work on a newspaper in Dixon, Tennessee, and from this job he saved enough money to attend Valparaiso University in Valparaiso, Indiana, for three years. Kelly never graduated from high school because his father believed the public schools would corrupt his faith and he was not allowed to attend, but his mother had been a good teacher. He was able to assimilate much at the University.
After this period of formal education, Kelly returned to the printing trade. He got a job with the Salina Sun in Salina, Kansas, where he learned to be a linotype operator and repairman which assured him good employment on almost any newspaper in the country. From Salina, he went to Pendleton, Oregon, and then to Great Falls, Montana, working as a linotype operator on various newspapers.
In 1919, because of his love of music and the hope that he might make music his career, Charles moved to Salt Lake City where he tried to affiliate with musical groups and continue his study of music. He had studied music since he was eight years of age and could play several instruments. When he was unable to secure employment with any of the musical companies in Salt Lake City, he set up his own printing business. In 1924 he sold his business and bought interest in the Western Printing Company where he remained until 1941.
Kelly's natural curiosity and interest in the West led him to explore the Salt Desert looking for old trails and gathering information on the trails from every available source. After he accumulated considerable material he wrote an article about the trails and the Donner Party and submitted it for publication, only to have his manuscript rejected. He decided he had enough data for a book which he would publish himself. Salt Desert Trails was the result of his research--his first published book, reprinted in 1969, and now a collector's item. In eight years, 1930-1938, he authored four books besides Salt Desert Trails. The books were: Hold Murder: The Story of Porter Rockwell; Old Greenwood: The Story of Caleb Greenwood; Miles Goodyear: First Citizen of Utah; and Outlaw Trail: A History of Butch Cassidy and His Wild Bunch. He also edited the Journals of John D. Lee, 1846-1847 and 1859 during this time. The second edition of Outlaw Trail was revised and enlarged, and published in 1959, and a revised edition of Old Greenwood: The Story of Caleb Greenwood, with Dale L. Morgan collaborating, was published in 1965. Three journals, "Captain Francis Marion Bishop's Journal,""Journal of W. C. Powell," and "Journal of Robert Chalmers" were edited by Charles Kelly and published in the Utah Historical Quarterly. Numerous articles and book reviews dating from 1930-1971 appeared in many western publications.
The Saturday Evening Post of 6 May 1939 featured an article by Charles Kelly of a boat trip down the Glen Canyon of the Colorado River. This was one of six river trips Charles Kelly made, the first being in 1932 with Julian Steward of the University of Utah to assist in an archaeological survey of Glen Canyon. With Russell G. Frazier, he also boated the Yampa in Dinosaur National Monument and ran the Middle Fork of the Salmon River.
Kelly developed a keen interest in archaeology and visited sites throughout Utah in search of petroglyphs and artifacts. He assisted in many excavations and for years, with Frank Beckwith and others, explored the desert studying Indian petroglyphs, searching for trilobite fossils, studying geology, and researching various subjects. It was through these archaeological pursuits that he came to know the little community of Fruita within the Capitol Reef National Monument, and chose it as an ideal place to retire in 1941 when he sold his interest in the printing business. Here he could pursue his research and writing.
In 1943 Charles Kelly was appointed custodian (without pay) of Capitol Reef National Monument. He lived on government land in a two-room frame house free of charge and was allowed to sell the fruit grown on the property as income for taking charge of the Monument. Kelly served in this position until 1950 when he received a civil service appointment as superintendent. It is this beautiful Red Rock Country he loved that he depicted so well in his paintings.
In 1959 at the age of seventy, Charles Kelly retired as superintendent of Capitol Reef National Monument. Faced with failing eyesight he was, nevertheless, able to revise and reissue two of his books and continued to research on some of his favorite subjects. He was named an Honorary Life Member of the Utah State Historical Society in 1960, and in 1969 he was chosen to receive an Award of Merit by the American Association of State and Local History.
Charles Kelly married Harriette Greener in 1919. He died 19 April 1971; Harriette Greener Kelly died 13 July 1974.
Content Description +/-
The Charles Kelly papers (1889-1971) document the work of a man of varied talents and interests. The papers contain personal materials, including his diary (1918-1971), a copy of his autobiography (1936), day books, and logs and journals of six river trips taken from 1932 to 1942. Included also is correspondence with colleagues exchanging information on research and writing, miscellaneous research materials, and published and unpublished manuscripts. Also present are periodicals in which some of his articles and photographs are published; a typescript copy of "The Field Notes of Robert Brewster Stanton, 1889-1890," which is an examination of the Colorado River for a railway line; and the "Journal of Albert King Thurber," an explorer of the area between the Sevier River Valley and the Colorado River. The collection contains copies of Kelly's six books published between 1930 and 1938. Several of Kelly's paintings of Southern Utah's red rock country are also part of the collection. The correspondence in box 2 includes individuals such as Frank Beckwith, Hoffman Birney, Juanita Brooks, Maurice Howe, Otis "Dock" Marston, and Dale L. Morgan, writers and friends of Charles Kelly who for many years exchanged information concerned with their research and writing. Other correspondence is included and filed alphabetically. In the preface of most of his books, Charles Kelly solicited additional information that might be known or discovered which could be used in future editions. The correspondence in box 3 is, to a great extent, responses to these requests. It is filed under the name of the book to which it refers.
Collection Use +/-
Restrictions on Access:
Twenty-four hours advance notice encouraged. Access to parts of this collection may be restricted under provisions of state or federal law.
Restrictions on Use:
It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances.
Permission to publish material from the Charles Kelly papers must be obtained from the Special Collections Manuscript Curator.
Initial Citation: Charles Kelly papers, Ms 0100, Box [ ]. Special Collections and Archives. University of Utah, J. Willard Marriott. Salt Lake City, Utah.
Following Citations:Ms 0100.
Administrative Information +/-
Processed by Della L. Dye in 1975.
Kelly, Charles, 1889-1971
Collection material in English.
5.5 linear feet
Language of the Finding Aid:
Finding aid encoded in English.
Author of the Finding Aid:
Finding aid created by Della L. Dye
EAD Creation Date:
See also the Charles Kelly papers (MS B 114) located at the Utah State Historical Society, Salt Lake City, Utah.