The First Fifty Years of the Western's history was written by George W. Holsinger. George was born August 4, 1874 in Rosedale (in Kansas City, Kansas). He entered the nursery business about 1898 with two brothers, doing business as Holsinger Brothers Nursery. In 1915 they were joined by Laurence E. Wilson, and the name of the business was changed to Holsinger Nursery Company. George Holsinger passed in Nov, 1944.
This year (1940) we nurserymen join the ranks of three veteran trade associations who have reached the half century mark, celebrating our 50th annual meeting here in Kansas City. Like the Western Retail Implement and Hardware Association and Southwestern Lumbermen’s Association, these annual meetings here have made us all feel that we’re very much a part of this community. We wish it were possible to have with us today representatives of each of the 17 firms which made up the original Western Association of Wholesale Nurserymen.
Those men would undoubtedly remember the early day Kansas City as a thriving little river town, with a lunging cable car whose uncertainties made a ride “uptown” a thrilling experience. They could recall for us the days of fine horses, and tallyho carriages when the Blossom House, Centropolis, Coates House and Midland Hotels were centers of the town’s social life.
Unfortunately, records of a first meeting, sometime in 1890, are not in existence. We know, however, that such a meeting was held because of a reference to the “absence of elected officers” when a second session was held January 6, 1891, in the offices of Blair and Kaufman, located at what is now 9th and Grand.
Click here to read the PDF with the full history of the first 50 years of WNLA.