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Saturday, July 2, 2011

Dr. Johnston Lykins

Dr. Johnston Lykins (1800-1876) = Medical Missionary. Kansas City’s First Mayor (1853-1854). Born in Virginia on August 15. Dr. Lykins received his medical education at Transylvania College (f. 1780), in Lexington, Kentucky.
Dr. Lykins came west in 1831, settling in the Kansas City area as a medical missionary. He is said to have accompanied the Shawnee Indians on their long trek from Michigan to the territory of Kansas. The Federal government began setting aside reservations as early as 1786, but on May 28, 1829, Congress gave President Jackson permission to move various Indian tribes such as the Shawnee and the Delaware to the new Kansas territory.
Dr. Lykins compiled a Shawnee-English dictionary and written alphabet to enable the Shawnees to read his translation of the Bible. He also vaccinated his flock against smallpox.
He was instrumental in organizing First Baptist Church, formerly at 5th and West Streets, which is presently located at Red Bridge and Wornall roads in south Kansas City. Charter members were: Robert and Mary A. Holmes, T.M. and Sarah J. James, A.L. and Elizabeth M. Martin, D.L.Mimms, Dr. Johnston, Martha, and Julia Lykins, Rev. R.S.and Elvira Thomas.
Johnston’s first wife was Delilah McCoy, the daughter of Baptist missionary Elder Isaac McCoy. She died of tuberculosis at the Pottawatomie Indian Reservation in 1844. He had one son and daughter, Julia, who married Dr. T.S. Case. He married his second wife, Martha A. “Mattie” Livingston in 1851. He built a two story, 14 room, red brick mansion which was completed in 1857 at 12th and Broadway. He had invested in land, but lost his wealth in the economic collapse during the 1870s and died while still in bankruptcy. Afterwards, Mattie converted the house into a boarding school for girls. It was sold and moved two years before her death in 1889.


More to Read:
1. Blue River Baptist Association Missouri. By Marshall Louis Mertens and O.P. Joyce. Brown-White-Lowell Press, Kansas City, MO. 1947.
2. Article abt. Lykins Translation of the Gospel of Matthew
3. A Century of Faith: The Story of the First Baptist, Kansas City, MO. 1855-1955. By Otto F. Dubach & Virginia Sheaff.
5. A Condensed History of the Kansas City Area: Its Mayors and Some V.I.P.s 1850-1950 ” Assembled by George Fuller Green. City Historian. The Lowell Press; Kansas City, MO. 1968.
6. History of Kansas City, 1886. T. S. Case.
7. The History of Jackson County, Missouri. Kansas City, MO; Union Historical Company, Birdsall, Williams & Co., 1881. Reprinted: Cape Girardeau, MO, Ramfre Press, 1966.
8. John Brown and the Legend of Fifty-Six. By James Claude Malin. 1942.
10. Here Lies Kansas City: A Collection of our City’s Notables and Their Final Resting Places. Wilda Sandy, 1984. and Union Cemetery Historical Society Walking Tour Map
11. Findagrave #6012821


Historical Note: The Lykin's mansion on Quality Hill stood until 1989.

Places to see in Mo & KS.:
1. Red Bridge Baptist Church Marker, 100 W. Red Bridge Road, South Kansas City, MO.
2. Johnston E. Lykins Square, 8th Street, Myrtle Ave., KCMO
3. Stand on the SW corner of 12th and Washington streets, Kansas City where Lykins house once stood.
4.. Lykins Community Center, 4012 E. 10th Street, 816-784-2200 (was named in his honor)
5. Pottawatomie Baptist Manual Labor School, 1847-1859, Kansas History Center near Topeka
6. Westport Historical Society, 4000 Baltimore Ave, Kansas City
7. Union Cemetery, 227 East 28th Terr. Kansas City. 64108


Lykins' Family:
1. Family:  Rev. David Lykins
2. David Lykin's Baptist Wea Mission
3. Daughter: Julia Lykins Case (1839-1872), Elmwood Cemetery, 4900 Truman Road, Kansas City, Mo.

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Ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints, I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. ~ Ephesians 1:15-17.