Guide to the William C. Kost Farm Records

Summary
Collection ID:
NMAH.AC.0481
Creators:
Kost, William Elvidge
Kost, William Cassell, (farmer), 1917-1989
Agriculture and Natural Resources, Division of (NMAH, SI).
Dates:
1939-1989
Languages:
English
Collection is in English.
Physical Description:
17.66 Cubic feet
53 boxes
Repository:
The records of the Kost family farm, Vermont, Illinois. The farm consisted of 120 acres where small grains, hay, and cattle were raised.

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
The William C. Kost Farm Records is an exhaustive collection of bills, receipts, pay-stubs, and other financial records relating to the business of a small, mid-western family farm. Beginning with Kost's employment as a bookkeeper in 1942 for local Vermont, Illinois area taverns, the financial records intensely cover the period until the year before his death in 1989. The collection is a complete financial picture of a typical mid-western farm during the post WWII period, through the agricultural boom days of the 1950s and 1960s, and into the trying agricultural times of the late 1970s and 1980s. These financial records reconstruct a day to day, week to week, and month to month, financial portrait of the Kost farm. The limited amount of correspondence found in this collection complements the financial record. Tax returns, medical, and personal expense records are all included within the collection. Kost and his wife ran the farm operation with occasional hired help. Kost also took a job off the farm to supplement the farm income.

Arrangement
Arrangement
The collection is organized into three series.
Series 1, Tavern Accounts, 1939-1945
Series 2, Maryland Farm, 1946
Series 3, William C. Kost Farm, 1946-1989

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
William Cassel Kost (1917-1989) acquired land and began farming in Vermont, Illinois in 1946. The farm consisted of 120 acres where Kost raised small grains, hay, and cattle. Prior to this time, Kost had been a bookkeeper for local taverns and a tenant farmer. Over the next fifty-three years, Kost worked his own farm as well as occasionally renting land, the Maryland Farm and others. In the 1950s, Kost secured a position with Hemp & Company, later known as the King-Sealey Thermos Factory, first in a part-time capacity then as a full-time employee, retiring on disability in 1975. He continued to farm until his death in August 1989. He was married to Maxine Elvidge (1916-1987) and had one son, William Elvidge Kost (1941-).

Administration
Processing Information
Processed by Franklin A. Robinson, Jr., volunteer, 1994; supervised by Vanessa Broussard-Simmons, archivist. Finding aid revised in June 2014.
Author
Franklin A. Robinson, Jr.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Donated to the National Museum of American History, Archives Center by William E. Kost in 1993.

Using the Collection
Preferred Citation
William C. Kost Farm Records, 1939-1989, Archives Center, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution.
Conditions Governing Access
Collection is open for research. Gloves must be worn when handling unprotected photographs, negatives, and slides.
Conditions Governing Use
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.

Related Materials
Division of Work and Industry and the Division of Home and Community Life holds artifacts related to this collection.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Housebooks -- 1940-1990 Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Illinois -- 1940-1990 Place Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Farms -- 1940-1990 -- Illinois Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Hay Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Work and family -- 1940-1990 Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Vermont (Ill.) -- 1940-1990 Place Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Wheat Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Soybean Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Swine Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Receipts -- 20th century Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Rural families -- 1940-1990 Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Agriculture -- 1940-1990 -- Illinois Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Livestock Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Corn Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Beef cattle Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Family records -- 1940-1990 Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Family farms -- 1940-1990 Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Farm equipment -- 1940-1990 Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Farm buildings -- 1940-1990 Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Farmers -- 1940-1990 Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Farm management -- 1940-1990 Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Agriculture and Natural Resources, Division of (NMAH, SI). Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid

Repository Contact
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
P.O. Box 37012
Suite 1100, MRC 601
Washington, D.C. 20013-7012
archivescenter@si.edu
http://americanhistory.si.edu/archives