In addition to his service as Postmaster General for the McDonald Territory, Walter R. Arndt was associated with the threshing industry as operator, dealer, distributor, factory representative as salesman, serviceman, collector and general service manager. A May 2, 1961 article refers to him as the Chief Justice for McDonald Territory as well as Postmaster General. This was in connection with the McDonald Territory's so-called land rush, where one-acre tracts of land were deeded to winners of the contest. Later he ran a jewelry and watch repair store in Noel. Arndt noted that he served as the County Engineer and Surveyor for McDonald County, Missouri for 23 years. While County Surveyor he compiled, and recorded in longhand all of the exterior and interior corner markers in McDonald County and bound them in fourteen books, plus 252 maps, which have been microfilmed and are now cataloged and placed in the Missouri State Land Survey Authority building in Rolla, Missouri, as part of the Department of Natural Resources; thought to be housed at the University of Missouri-Rolla under original document code 719: County Surveys.
One of his most relevant writings to our purposes here, is his own written history of McDonald Territory. The date of writing was not given, but it was apparently after zip codes arrived in common use, as he includes his zip code in the single sheet. It appears he may have included the one page history as an enclosure in philatelic covers. My guess is that Arndt continued to get requests for McDonald Territory stamps and markings for some years after the actual event ended. Mr. Arndt was a prolific writer and spent much of his retirement years with his hobbies and tinkering.
History of McDonald Territory by Walter R. Arndt
In the two web references below featuring articles from the year 1966 and from 1970, Arndt wrote some well-written technical articles about boiler explosions and later, authored a first-hand account of a railroad explosion and disaster that occurred in 1969 in the City of Noel, Missouri.
Here is an article from Google News Archive that tells more about the Noel explosion:
Here is another one of his writings from 1973 about his work, including a model threshing machine.
If you go to the Steam Traction / Farm Collector website, there are about 20 articles either written by Arndt,
or containing references to him. Just use Arndt as the search term.
He tells a lot about his life and about his work as County Surveyor in McDonald County,
and about his years of owing the jewelry and watch repair store in Noel. He was a certified
timekeeper repairman for KCS railroad. That says something, don't you think?
His article about growing old is particularly poignant and was written in his waning years. As a bit of genealogical information, a report
in their Sept./Oct. 1973 issued entitled "Soot in the Flues" reports that Arndt and his wife had just celebrated their 60th Wedding Anniversary;
stating that they were married on April 2, 1913 in Howard, Kansas, by Rev. Nichols of the Howard Methodist Church.
McDonald Territory Private Dispatch: Remembering at 50
Back to McDonald Territory: Provisional Government Officials
Back to Spring River Local Post Page
Page last updated 26 March 2010 0248Z