Shawnee Sun (Siwinowe Kesibwi) Newspaper
Baptist minister, Indian missionary, and printer Jotham Meeker issued the first newspaper printed in what is now the state of Kansas - and the first in the country printed entirely in a Native American language.
Meeker devised a phonetic printing system that enabled him to print in a Native American language as easily and cheaply as in English. Among items he produced were a code of tribal laws of the Ottawa Indians and the aforementioned newspaper, the Shawnee Sun.
The Shawnee Sun began as a monthly in March 1835. Only two known copies of the newspaper exist, one of which is housed in LaBudde Special Collections at the Miller Nichols Library, University of Missouri-Kansas City. The extant sheet contains a two-page excerpt from the November 1841 issue.
- "Interpreting the Shawnee Sun: Literacy and Cultural Persistence in Indian Territory, 1833-1841." Kansas History. Winter 2008/2009 (vol. 31, no. 4.), pg. 242-259.
[View article abstract on Kansas State Historical Society website]
- Jotham Meeker Papers, 1825-1864 [microform]
- Guide to the Microfilm Edition of the Jotham Meeker Papers, 1825-1864
- Jotham Meeker, Pioneer Printer of Kansas, with a Bibliography of the Known Issues of the Baptist Mission Press at Shawanoe, Stockbridge, and Ottawa, 1834-1854
- The Shawnee Sun: the First Indian-language Periodical Published in the United States
- The Annual Register of Indian Affairs: in the Western (or Indian) Territory, 1835-1838