At War with Pontiac
By Kirk Munroe
Born Charles Kirk Munroe in a log cab near Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin, Munroe was the son of Charles and Susan (Hall) Munroe. His youth was spent on the frontier, after which his family moved to Cambridge, Massachusetts where he attended school until he was sixteen. He publicly dropped "Charles" from his name in 1883. In 1876, Kirk Munroe was hired as a reporter for the New York Sun. Three years later he became the first editor of Harper's Young People magazine; he resigned in 1881. From 1879 to 1884, he was the commodore of New York Canoe club. During this time he helped found the League of American Wheelmen with Charles E. Pratt on May 31, 1880. Munroe was the Wheelmen's first Commander. He married Mary Barr, daughter of Amelia E. Barr on September 15, 1883. The couple settled in Coconut Grove, Miami, Florida in 1886. Mary accompanied him on several cruises on the Allapata, a thirty-five foot sharpie-ketch sailboat designed by Ralph Middleton Munroe. While in Florida, Munroe became a noted member of the Florida Audubon Society, and recommended a family friend Guy Bradley to the position as game warden in southern Florida. Bradley was later killed by plume hunters while on duty in the Everglades. Munroe builds a tennis court on his property. It is the first tennis court in Miami-Dade county. Munroe helped in establishing what is today called Ransom Everglades School. After Mary died in September 1922, he married his second wife, Mabel Stearns, in 1924. Kirk Munroe died June 16, 1930 at the age of 79. He was buried next to his first wife, Mary at the Woodlawn Park Cemetery in Miam.
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