Frank Carlson Library

Frank Carlson Library


Frank Carlson Library hosts memorabilia and artifacts from Carlson's influential political career.
Frank Carlson (Born: January 23, 1893 Died: May 30, 1987) best known as Kansas' 'Favorite Son', Carlson began his political career as a representative to the Kansas House of Representatives in 1928. After serving two terms he was then elected to the United States House of Representatives where he served from 1935 to 1947. In 1946 he was elected governor of Kansas. As governor, he pushed mental health programs as well as a long-term highway project. In 1949, Kansas senator Clyde Reed died, and Carlson appointed Harry Darbyto fill the seat. Darby continued his service in the Senate until Carlson himself was elected to fill the seat in 1950. Instead of waiting until January to be sworn in, he took his seat on November 28, 1950 leaving the office of governor to Frank L. Hagaman who served less than two months.
Carlson is the only Kansan to have held all four offices. His political career spanned 40 years, beginning in November 1928 and ending in January 1969.

In 1952, he convinced fellow Kansan Dwight D. Eisenhower to run for president. According to Billy Graham's biography Just As I Am, Carlson invited Eisenhower to the Senate Prayer Breakfast, which thus became the first Presidential Prayer Breakfast, thereafter an annual assembly of all three branches of government, continuing to this day. Carlson was re-elected twice, in 1956 and 1962, before returning to Concordia for retirement.

Senator Carlson served a term as president of the United States Senate Prayer Breakfast Group. He was therein featured by U.S. News & World Report on July 1, 1968 by editor, David Lawrence, for his strong moral and spiritual influence in the nation's capital.

Born in 1893 near Concordia, he attended Concordia public schools and Kansas State University before serving in WWI as a Private. After the war, he returned to Concordia to farm. Carlson died in 1987 in Concordia and is buried in Pleasant Hill Cemetery.

Cloud County
Covention & Tourism
130 6th St.
Concordia, KS 66901
Mon-Fri 9-12 1-5, Sat. 10-1
Phone: (785) 243-4303