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The University of Iowa Libraries

Guide to the Milo Reno Papers

Collection Overview

Date Span: 1927-1959
Creator: Reno, Milo (1866-1936)
Extent: 3.00 linear feet.
Collection Number: MSC0044
Repository: University of Iowa Special Collections
Summary: Farm leader. Correspondence, typescripts of speeches, articles, newspaper clippings, and other materials relating primarily to the activities of the National Farmers' Holiday Association and to state Farmers' Holiday associations.

Access: This collection is open for research.

Use: Copyright restrictions may apply; please consult Special Collections staff for further information.

Acquisition: Mrs. Susie Reno Bowles and Mr. Lowell Dyson gave the papers of Milo Reno to the University of Iowa Libraries in 1958 and1969, respectively.

Preferred Citation: Milo Reno Papers, The University of Iowa Libraries, Iowa City, Iowa.

Repository: University of Iowa Special Collections
Address: Special Collections Department
University of Iowa Libraries
Iowa City, IA 52242
Phone: 319-335-5921
Curator: Greg Prickman
Email: lib-spec@uiowa.edu
Website: http://www.lib.uiowa.edu/sc

Milo Reno was born on January 5, 1866, on the family farm in Wapello County, Iowa. He was the twelfth of thirteen children born to John and Elizabeth Reno. He attended rural schools, a Quaker academy, and Oskaloosa College. While in college he married Christine Good. They were to have three children, only one of whom lived to maturity.

In the 1880s Reno campaigned for the Union Labor Party and the Farmers' Alliance. In 1921, he became president of the Iowa Farmers' Union and served in that capacity for nine years. During that period he also served as president of the Farmers' Union Life Insurance Company and the Farmers' Mutual Automobile Association. In the early 1930s, Reno organized the National Farmers' Holiday Association and as its president campaigned for suitable prices for farm products - prices which would cover production costs and afford a reasonable profit. In August of 1932, he called for the first farm holiday which was in reality a strike for higher prices. After somewhat limited success, especially in the midwestern states, the movement collapsed. Later that year Reno's organization proclaimed a moratorium on tax and mortgage payments which ultimately highlighted the plight of the farmer and which prompted Congressional action for legislative solutions to the problem.

Reno at first supported the Roosevelt administration, but soon became disenchanted. He found fault with the Agricultural Adjustment Act (AAA) and the crop stabilization program. He was a vocal critic of the Secretary of Agriculture and fellow Iowan, Henry A. Wallace. In his later years, Reno championed a third party. Milo Reno died of influenza on May 5, 1936.

The papers of Milo Reno consist of three linear feet of manuscripts, dating from 1927 to 1959, and document his farm activism. Arranged alphabetically, these subject files include typescripts of speeches, articles, newspaper clippings, and other materials relating primarily to the activities of the National Farmers' Holiday Association and to state Farmers' Holiday associations. There are thirty-six folders of correspondence which include letters from: John H. Bosch, Richard Bosch, Smith Wildman Brookhart, Usher Burdick, Cassius E. Carnahan, F.C. Crocker, John C. Erp, William H. Green, Walter Groth, Alvin Handrich, Page Hawthorne, Clyde L. Herring, William Hirth, Thomas Horsford, George D. Iverson, Edward E. Kennedy, Norman W. Lermond, Emil Loriks, L.M. Peet, Herb Plambeck, Roy L. Rickerd, Franklin D. Roosevelt, John G. Scott, Jesse D. Sickler, John A. Simpson, Walter Singler, Art Smith, Edwin A. Stinson, Donald Van Vleet, Leon Vanderlyn, George Wharam, Alexander F. Whitney, and Howard Williams.

A microfilm copy of this collection is available for use in the repository, for interlibrary loan, and for purchase.
STOVER, FRED W., 1898-1990. Papers of Fred Stover, 13.5 ft.

Hampton, Iowa farm advocate and activist for progressive causes, former head of the Iowa Farmers Union and president of the U.S. Farmers Association. Correspondence, writings, and organizational materials, together with miscellaneous material, documenting his 40 years of political and social activism. MsC 165.

Browse by Series:
Series 1: GENERAL

  • Series 1: GENERAL
  • Box 1:
  • Articles and speeches by Milo Reno - 1933
  • Biographical material about Milo Reno
  • Bord, Roy B. "Information in Re Oil Code" (Article)
  • Correspondence including letters from: F.C. Crocker, John Chalmers, and Jesse D. Sickler - 1927-1932
  • Correspondence including letters from: Jesse D. Sickler, F.C. Crocker, and William Hirth. January 1-19 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: F.C. Crocker, John C. Erp, Usher L. Burdick, Emil Loriks, Walter M. Singler, R.K. Bliss, and John H. Bosch. January 20-31 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: John H. Bosch, Frank Eliason, Walter M. Singler, and Lem Harris. February 1-10 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: John C. Erp, William Hirth, F.C. Crocker, Usher L. Burdick, Jesse D. Sickler, and John Baer.February 11-19 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: Jesse D. Sickler, Arthur F. Newman, John A. Simpson, B.H. Shearer, F.C. Crocker, and William Hirth. February 20-28 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: Lynn J. Frazier, Walter M. Singler, Smith W. Brookhart, Daniel W. Hoan, George D. Iverson, Jr., William Hirth, and Jesse D. Sickler. March 1-8 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: William Hirth, E.E. Kennedy, and Smith W. Brookhart. March 9-19 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: William Hirth, John A. Simpson, F.C. Crocker, John H. Bosch, Jesse D. Sickler, John Baer, and A.F. Whitney. March 20-31 - 1933
  • Box 2:
  • Correspondence including letters from: Arthur Capper, A.F. Whitney, and A.C. Townley. April 1-14 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: F.C. Crocker, L.J. Dickinson, Edward C. Eicher, Fred C. Gilchrist, Bernhard M. Jacobsen, Louis Murphy, Walter M. Singler, Lloyd Thurston, Guy M. Gillette, William Hirth, E.E. Kennedy, John A. Simpson, Fred Biermann, Frank Eliason, and Otha D. Wearin. April 15-20 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: Cassius C. Dowell, Emil Loriks, Frank Eliason, William Hirth, John A. Simpson, E.E. Kennedy, Fiorello H. LaGuardia, and Art J. Smith. April 21-30 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: Smith W. Brookhart, Louis Murphy, Usher L. Burdick, and Art J. Smith. May 1-10 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: A.C. Townley, Floyd B. Olson, Walter Groth, Clyde L. Herring, George D. Iverson, Jr., F.C. Crocker, and John C. Erp. May 11-19 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: A.C. Townley, F.C. Crocker, John H. Bosch, Clyde L. Herring, Smith W. Brookhart, Walter Groth, George D. Iverson, Jr., and John C. Erp. May 20-3 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: Walter Groth, Usher L. Burdick, Roger Baldwin, Malcolm Cowley, Donald Henderson, John H. Bosch, Emil Loriks, and A.F. Whitney. June 1-12 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: Donald Henderson, William Hirth, Smith W. Brookhart, Peter Norbeck, and Wallace M. Short. June 13-30 - 1933
  • Box 3:
  • Correspondence including letters from: William Hirth, John H. Bosch, Walter Groth, and John A. Simpson. July 1933 - 1933
  • August: Correspondence including letters from: John H. Bosch, Walter Groth, John A. Simpson, Emil Loriks, and Art J. Smith - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: E.E. Kennedy, Art J. Smith, George D. Iverson, Jr., A.F. Whitney, Usher L. Burdick, and Ernest Lundeen. September - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: Usher L.Burdick, F.C. Crocker, John A. Simpson, E.E. Kennedy, John H. Bosch, William Hirth, Walter M. Singler, Clyde L. Herring, and A.F. Whitney. October 1-16 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: Usher L. Burdick, William Langer, E.E. Kennedy, Tom Berry, F.C. Crocker, A.F. Whitney, Charles W. Bryan, John C. Erp, A.J. Muste, Thomas R. Amlie, Emil Loriks, and Walter M. Singler. October 17-24 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from Glenn B. Miller and George D. Iverson, Jr. October 25-31 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: William Hirth, A.F. Whitney, William H. Smyth, and John A. Simpson. November 1-7 - 1933
  • Box 4:
  • Correspondence including letters from: John H. Bosch, A.F. Whitney, and F.C. Crocker. November 8-16 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: Edwin A. Stinson, F.C. Crocker, and Usher L. Burdick. November 17-30 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: Emil Loriks, William Hirth, and John A. Simpson. December 1-15 - 1933
  • Correspondence including letters from: William Hirth, Edwin A. Stinson, and E.E.Kennedy. December 16-31 - 1933
  • Correspondence including a letter from Usher L. Burdick. - 1934-1935
  • Including letters from: William Lemke, Charles E. Coughlin, William Hirth, and H.R. Gross - 1936
  • Letters of condolence at the time of Milo Reno's death, including letters from: E.E. Kennedy, Louis Murphy, L.J. Dickinson, B.H. Shearer, William Lemke, John H. Bosch, and George D. Iverson, Jr. A eulogy and photograph are also included - 1936
  • Correspondence including letters from: Vincent F. Harrington, E.E. Kennedy, and Page L. Hawthorne - 1938
  • Correspondence including letters from: E.E. Kennedy, William Lemke, Page L. Hawthorne, Paul Steele, Herbert Plambeck, Roland A. White, Burton K. Wheeler, and Donald R. Murphy - 1939
  • Box 5:
  • Correspondence including letters from: Page L. Hawthorne, Guy M. Gillette, Clyde L. Herring, Karl M. LeCompte, Henry O. Talle, Robert K. Goodwin, John W. Gwynne, William S. Jacobsen, Ben F. Jensen, Fred C. Gilchrist, James G. Patton, Paul Steele, and Charles L. McNary - 1940
  • Correspondence including letters from: James G. Patton, Paul Steele, M.W. Thatcher, Page L. Hawthorne, Herbert Plambeck, Gladys Talbot Edwards, George A. Wilson, and Glenn J. Talbott - 1941
  • Correspondence including letters from: F.C. Crocker, Page L. Hawthorne, Jesse D. Sickler, and Walter M. Singler. Undated.
  • Editorials by Page L. Hawthorne - 1938-1939
  • Editorials by Page L. Hawthorne - 1940-1941
  • Editorials by Page L. Hawthorne, undated.
  • Editorials by Milo Reno - 1933
  • Farmers' Educational and Cooperative Union of America: Historical sketch
  • Farmers' Educational and Cooperative Union of America: Iowa Division: Councillors' meeting minutes, resolutions, etc., - 1937-1941
  • Farmers' Educational and Cooperative Union of America: Iowa Division: 13th annual convention - 1929
  • Farmers' Educational and Cooperative Union of America: National Union: 31st annual convention - 1935
  • Box 6:
  • Food Distributors Association of Illinois: Brochures
  • Foreign Crops and Markets, Nov. 19 and May 6 - 1934, 1935
  • Meyne, Walter W. Vice President's Discussion on the Farmers' Guild, March 29 - 1939
  • Miscellaneous - 1930, 1932
  • Mother Earth - 1933
  • National By-Laws and Resolutions of the National Farmers' Holiday Association - 1934
  • Nebraska Farmers' Holiday Association - 1933
  • Newspaper clippings - 1983
  • Newspaper clippings regarding Milo Reno and the farm movement - 1928-1959
  • Obituaries and tributes to Milo Reno - 1936-1937
  • Radio speeches by Milo Reno - 1932-1934
  • Radio speeches by Milo Reno - 1935
  • Radio speeches by Milo Reno, undated
  • Resolutions of the Farmers' Holiday Association of the States of Minnesota, Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin, June 20 - 1935
  • Scrapbook kept by Mrs. Christine Huffy (Milo Reno's secretary) - 1933-1935
  • Scrapbook kept by Mr. and Mrs. Milo Reno (photocopy of the original) - 1932-1934
  • Speeches by Page L. Hawthorne - 1939-1941
  • 3.2 Per Cent, vol. 1, no. 5, May - 1933
  • Trish, George: "The Cause of the Present Agricultural Depression in the United States" (article)
  • Whitney, Alexander F. Speech before the Farmers' Holiday Association, May 3 - 1933