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John Holmes Collection

Identifier: RH-A-3454

Scope and Contents

In 1892,a new Post Office was completed on the southwest corner of Burdick and South Streets. In July of 1903 an article announced that work on the new addition which would be built to the west had begun. Total cost of the addition would be $38,500.Charles W. Gindole of Chicago received the contract to construct the building. John H. Holmes worked for the federal government supervising the construction. There are entries written by John Holmes starting on July 14, 1903 and continuing off and on until December 24. For the most part he starts each day commenting on the weather and then goes into detail about the progress of the Post Office addition. Each entry is not that long and contains a few phrases or sentences. Periodically he would note traveling back and forth from Chicago, Illinois. The dates in this journal that he wrote were:July 14, 1903 to September 25, 1903 (notes that he traveled to Chicago) Tuesday, October 6 (returns to Kalamazoo from Chicago) Friday, October 9 (returns to Chicago)Thursday, October 22 (returns to Kalamazoo from Chicago)Saturday, October 24 (returns to Chicago) Wednesday, November 18 (returns to Kalamazoo) Friday, November 20 (returns to Chicago) Wednesday, December 23 (returns to Kalamazoo from Chicago) Friday, December 24 (returns to Chicago). There are no entries for the rest of the year. The addition was completed in 1904. We do not have a journal to cover these years however John H. Holmes is listed in the Kalamazoo City Directory with his wife Pauline as the “U.S. supt of construction of public bldgs” and resided at 721 West Lovell. The 1905 Kalamazoo City Directory has him listed as, “removed to Jacksonville, Florida.” John Holmes continued working as a Superintendent of Public Buildings or Building Construction. In 1910 he is a roomer in Hennepin, Minnesota and in 1920 he is living with his wife Pauline in Albany, New York.


  • Creation: 1913



.10 Cubic Feet

Language of Materials


Physical Description

The journal amounts to .10 cubic feet and is composed of one journal, 7 ½” x 9 ½” x 1” and was produced by the Ihling Brothers and Everard Company of Kalamazoo, Michigan. The covers are marbleized paper in shades of red, green and yellow and the spine and corners are in burgundy.The cover has a label, “Excelsior Journal 1903 no. 310.” Enclosed are approximately a little more than 250 pages with two dates on each page. The front cover has a 1903 calendar, the back 1904. Also included is information on a table of wages by the week, interest tables, principal cities, income on stocks, domestic, foreign postage and legal holidays. Inside the front cover is the heading, “Office of Superintendent of Construction U.S. Post Office, Kalamazoo, Mich. John H. Holmes Supt. July 15, 1903.”

John Holmes Journal Finding Aid
Lynn Houghton
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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Repository Details

Part of the Western Michigan University Archives & Regional History Collections Repository

Charles C. and Lynn L. Zhang Legacy Collections Center
1650 Oakland Drive
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5307 US
(269) 387-8490