Monett Battle of Westport Fund

On December 5, 1975 the fund was chartered as a Missouri not for profit corporation. This was a memorial to Dr. Howard N. Monnett who had researched and wrote the book, Action Before Westport-1864. The leaders of the Civil War Round Table of Kansas City joined together in creating an organization for the purpose of educating, commemorating and interpreting sites and battlefields associated with the Battle of Westport. In 1978 the Monnett Fund was granted tax-exempt status as a 501(c)(3) charitable corporation. In 1980, the leaders of the Monnett Fund began the initial efforts to place portions of the Byram's Ford site on the National Register of Historic Places. In 1983, the Fund began its role as owner and steward of a portion of the Big Blue Battlefield. Judge James F. Davis obtained the donation of fifty acres of the Battlefield from Commerce Bank, including the Byram's Ford crossing. In 1986 the Fund, under the leadership of Chairman Orvis Fitts and President Jack Brooks, faced the challenge of the threatened destruction of the Byram's Ford site by a flood control project on the Big Blue river. Following lengthy negotiations with the Corp of Engineers, Orvis Fitts successfully drafted a plan which preserved the Ford and provided for the preservation of additional tracts of the battlefield. In 1995, Orvis Fitts and Jack Brooks led in obtaining publicity for the project and the financial support of the Association for the Preservation of Civil War Sites. Jointly the Fund and APCWS raised over $42,000. Since 1998, Fund President Dan Smith has pursued obtaining and submitting the necessary documentation for the formal boundary increase amendment. Beginning in 1999, the Fund's board discussed further development and interpretive goals for the Byram's Ford Site. Fund Chairman Steven Treaster and Treasurer Betty Ergovich in May 1999 obtained a community action grant from the city for nearly $30,000 for a mapping study. The Fund is preparing to conduct an intensive effort to obtain community, state and national support for its proposed development plan.

Dan Smith, Chairman
Sandy Ackerson, President
Jim Beckner, Vice President
Betty Ergovich, Treasurer
Don Bates Sr., Asst. Treasurer
Harriet Duff, Secretary

Sandy Ackerman
Don Bates Sr.
Jim Beckner
Hack Brooks
Harriet Duff
Betty Ergovich
Orvis Fitts
Jay Gunnels
Charles Kopke
Ed Shutt
Dan Smith
Les Thieroff
David Landes   

(From the 2006 Membership Roster)

Civil War Round Table of Kansas City
P.O. Box 6202
Shawnee Mission, KS 66206

Email:          Membership Application