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Jeanne Riggs
NE Kansas
Burlingame Explorations
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Marshall & Victor Murdock

Burlingame, KS


About this Exploration:

Marshall Murdock, a pioneer journalist of Kansas, was born in what is now West Virginia in 1837. In 1863, after working at a printing office in Lawrence, Colonel Murdock located at Burlingame, where he established the first newspaper in the county – the Burlingame Chronicle, still in operation today as the Osage County Chronicle. He also served as state senator for Osage and Lyon counties. With the expansion of the Santa Fe line toward Wichita, in 1872 he moved his printing office there and founded The Wichita Eagle. Soon afterward he was elected state senator for that region and served as postmaster of Wichita for many years under appointment of President McKinley, holding at the time of his death January 2, 1908.

It was written about him: “As he was by far a bigger man than the offices he held, his place in the world must be measured in other ways.  He reached his highest stature in his profession. He was, by all odds, the best all-around editor in the State. In brilliancy he had no superior, and in public usefulness it is doubtful if he ever had an equal. He was the greatest town boomer and town builder the Middle West has ever known. And he was honest in both. He saw, as through a vision, the future glory of the hamlet with which he had cast his fortune.”


Victor Murdock, son of Marshall M. Murdock, was born in Burlingame, March 18, 1871. He moved with his parents to Wichita in 1872. He attended public school and Lewis Academy in Wichita, then served as a reporter for The Wichita Eagle.  In 1891, he moved to Chicago and was employed as a newspaper reporter on the Chicago Inter-Ocean.  He later returned to Wichita and became managing editor of the Daily Eagle 1894-1903.

Victor also served as clerk of the central division, southern department of the Kansas Appellate Court 1895-1897. He was elected as a Republican to the 58th Congress to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of Chester I. Long, re-elected to the 59th Congress and to the four succeeding Congresses, serving from May 26, 1903 to March 3, 1915. He also served as chairman of the National Committee of the Progressive Party in 1915 and 1916, war correspondent in 1916, member of the Federal Trade Commission from 1917 to 1924 serving as chairman for four years. And following in his father's footsteps, he served as editor of The Wichita Eagle until his death on July 8, 1945 in Wichita. 
Both father and son were inducted into the Kansas Newspaper Hall of Fame, Marshall in 1931 in the inaugural class and Victor in 1948.  The Hall of Fame is an honor roll of journalists who have made outstanding contributions to their profession and to their state. Kansas newspaper editors are chosen for induction into the Hall of Fame by a vote of their peers.  In addition to this honor, the Victor Murdock Award is given annually in memory of the late editor of The Wichita Eagle.  The Murdock Award recognizes a writer or reporter for outstanding journalistic standards as exhibited through a story or series of stories published in a Kansas newspaper. Winners receive a  commemorative medallion and cash award.
Future display will be housed at the Burlingame Community Library.

contact info
Tricia Kline

Burlingame, KS 66413
Phone: 785.224.1403
Melissa Miller-Atwood
107 N. Topeka Ave #208
Burlingame, KS 66413
Phone: 785.554.8500
Christi Droege

Burlingame, Kansas 66413
Phone: 785.224.7340
Kansas Sampler Foundation   Kansas Department of Commerce - Travel Kansas   Get Rural Kansas