A Kansas City capitalist discovers the Ozarks

Robert M. Snyder’s triumphs had come in the natural gas, oil, real estate, and banking businesses, and he was the organizer of what became the Kansas City Life Insurance Company. 

While staying at a hotel in Lebanon owned by Major Kellogg, Robert McClure Snyder Sr. was told about fabulous Ha Ha Tonka by Colonel Scott. 

The Kansas City capitalist was an active sportsman. His great-grandson, Bob Snyder, reported he had considered buying Roaring River. 

In 1904, he purchased Ha Ha Tonka spring and lake from Col. R.G. Scott and added sixty tracts.

According to Scott, Snyder’s holdings amounted to 5,300 acres “of Camden county’s most beautiful hills and streams.” In an extensive interview (The Springfield Press, Oct. 19, 1929), he recounted the beginnings of Snyder’s Ozarks retreat:   

“Mr. Snyder’s advent in the Ozarks gave me (Col. Scott) new hope. It brought development to the county I believe to be Missouri’s greatest asset. Twenty-four years ago we started building the Snyder castle and tower at Ha Ha Tonka. But death intervened to prevent Snyder seeing his dream castle completed.”

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