Kansas History - the history of Kansas
   
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Vacation 2 USA   >   Kansas   >   History
Vacation 2 USA   >   History   >   Kansas History

   
 

Kansas History


The first Native American peoples arrived in what is today the state Kansas, approximately 9,000 years ago. Initially these people were hunter-gatherers, but around 3,000 years some converted to a largely settled agricultural lifestyle and developed permanent dwellings in larger settlements.

In 1541, the Spanish conquistador Francisco Vasquez de Coronado visited the region. During this expedition, the horse was introduced to the Plains Indian, and this greatly altered their lifestyle and range. The Kansa and Osage peoples arrived in Kansas during the 17th century. Other Native American peoples who inhabited present-day Kansas included the Pawnees and the Otoe tribe of the Sioux.

In 1724, the French visited the Kansas river and established a trading post near the mouth of the river. At this time, the territory was part of the area claimed as New France. Kansas became an unorganized territory of the United States following the 1803 Louisana Purchase from France.

In 1806, the Zebulon Pike explored the area, and labelled it as the "Great American Desert". As a result, in the 1820s, the federal government "permanently" set aside the region as Indian territory and closed it to white settlement. Between the 1820s and 1840s, the federal government moved many Native American tribes into the region. Despite the prohibition on white settlement, the Santa Fe trail passed through Kansas, US Army forts were established inside the territory (starting with Fort Leavenworth in 1827), and by the 1850s, many white Americans were illegally squatting in the area and calling for the entire territory to be opened for settlement.

In the 1850s, white settlers began to push for territorial government, and by 1853, Congress had decided that eastern Kansas should be open to settlement. The treaties with Native Americans were renegotiated, and the U.S. Government regained nearly all the land that it had ceded to them "forever" only a few years before. The Indians were then largely relocated to Oklahoma.

In 1854, the Kansas-Nebraska Act became law, and established the Nebraska and Kansas Territories. A controversial provision of the Act was that settlers in the territories would decide for themselves whether to allow slavery within the borders ("popular sovereignty"), rather than following the earlier Missouri Compromise which banned slavery North of 36°30'. The Kansas-Nebraska Act led to violence and chaos in Kansas with fighting between pro-slavery and anti-slavery settlers, and four different competing constitutions for Kansas, earning the territory the nickname of "Bleeding Kansas". Eventually, Kansas was admitted as the 34th state of the Union on January 29th, 1861 as a free state.

During the American Civil War (1861 to 1865), most Kansans strongly favored the Union. More than 20,000 men were enlisted from the state, a remarkable number considering the state had only 30,000 men of military age. These forces suffered over 8,500 casualties during the war. During the war, many guerilla raids and atrocities took place in the state, the worst of which occured at Lawrence which destroyed much of the city include the massacre of about 200 men and boys. The biggest battle in the state was the Battle of Mine Creek which involved around 25,000 men.

The 1860s also saw the Indian Wars in Kansas and Nebraska, between Cheyennes and Araphoes on one side, and white settlers and the US Army on the other. The worst incident was the massacre of a band of friendly Indians at Sand Creek near Fort Lyon, who were on their own reservation and had been ordered there as a place of safety.

Following the Civil War, many former slaves, known as "Exodusters", moved to Kansas, which was known as the land of John Brown. These Exodusters founded the town of Nicodemus.

Kansas led the way in the prohibition movement: On February 19th 1881, Kansas was the first US state to ban all alcoholic beverages.

Kansas contributed troops to guard the US-Mexico border during the Mexican Revolution (1916), and over 80,000 troops to the US military after the US entry into World War I in 1917.

After World I, there were several legal battles between the state of Kansas and the Ku Klux Klan, which eventually resulted from their explusion from the state. The region also suffered during the Dust Bowl of the 1930s, and many farmers left the state as a result.

In 1954, Kansas was at the center of controversy in the court case of Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka which concerned the Monroe Elementary School, one of four segregated elementary schools in Topeka. The US Supreme Court eventually ruled 9-0 that "separate educational facilities are inherently unequal" reversing the precedent set by the Court's previous (1899) decision in Cumming v. Richmond County Board of Education.


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Hidden History of Kansas

By Adrian Zink

The History Press
Released: 2017-11-06
Paperback (192 pages)

Hidden History of Kansas
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Kansas' storied past is filled with fascinating firsts, humorous coincidences and intriguing characters. A man who had survived a murderous proslavery massacre in 1858 hanged his would-be executioner five years later. A wealthy Frenchman utilized his utopian ideals to create an award-winning silk-producing commune in Franklin County. A young boy's amputated arm led to the rise of Sprint Corporation. The first victim of the doomed Donner Party met her end in Kansas. In 1947, a housewife in Johnson County, indignant at the poor condition of the local school for black children, sparked school desegregation nationwide. Author and historian Adrian Zink digs deep into the Sunflower State's history to reveal these hidden and overlooked stories.

It Happened in Kansas: Remarkable Events That Shaped History (It Happened In Series)

By Sarah Smarsh

Brand: Globe Pequot
Released: 2010-08-17
Paperback (160 pages)

It Happened in Kansas: Remarkable Events That Shaped History (It Happened In Series)
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It Happened in Kansas features over 25 chapters in Kansas history.  Lively and entertaining, this book brings the varied and fascinating history of the Sunflower State to life.

Kansas: The History of the Sunflower State, 1854-2000

By Craig Miner

Brand: University Press of Kansas
Paperback (528 pages)

Kansas: The History of the Sunflower State, 1854-2000
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Kansas is not only the Sunflower State, it's the very heart of America's heartland. It is a place of extremes in politics as well as climate, where ambitious and energetic people have attempted to put ideals into practice-a state that has come a long way since being identified primarily with John Brown and his exploits.

Craig Miner has written a complete and balanced history of Kansas, capturing the state's colorful past and dynamic present as he depicts the persistence of contrasting images of and attitudes toward the state throughout its 150 years. A work combining serious scholarship with great readability, it encompasses everything from the Kansas-Nebraska Act to the evolution-creationism controversy, emphasizing the historical moments that were pivotal in forming the culture of the state and the diverse group of people who have contributed to its history.

Kansas: The History of the Sunflower State is the first new state history to appear in over twenty-five years and the most thoroughly researched ever published. Written to enlighten general readers within and well beyond the state's borders, it offers coverage not found in previous histories: greater attention to its cities-notably Wichita-and to its south central and western regions, accounts of business history, contributions of women and minorities, and environmental concerns. It presents the dark as well as the bright side of Kansas progressivism and is the first Kansas history to deal with the post-World War II era in any significant detail.

Craig Miner has spent almost forty years researching, teaching, and writing Kansas history and has dug deeply into primary sources-especially gubernatorial papers-that shed new light on the state. That research has enabled him to assemble a wider cast of characters and more entertaining collection of quotations than found in earlier histories and to better show how individual initiative and entrepreneurial aspirations have profoundly influenced the creation of present-day Kansas.

Ranging from the days of cattle and railroads to the era of oil and agribusiness, this history situates the state in its own terms rather than as a sidebar to a larger American epic. Miner brings to its pages an identifiable Kansas character to preserve what is distinctive about the state's identity for future generations, echoing what one Kansan said over half a century ago: "Kansas is simply Kansas. May she never be tempted to become anything else."

No Saints in Kansas

By Amy Brashear

Soho Teen
Released: 2017-11-14
Hardcover (320 pages)

No Saints in Kansas
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A young adult, fictional reimagining of Truman Capote's In Cold Blood and the brutal murders that inspired it. Gripping and fast-paced, this meticulously researched historical fiction will reinvigorate a new generation to Capote.

November is usually quiet in Holcomb, Kansas, but in 1959, the town is shattered by the quadruple murder of the Clutter family. Suspicion falls on Nancy Clutter’s boyfriend, Bobby Rupp, the last one to see them alive.

New Yorker Carly Fleming, new to the small Midwestern town, is an outsider. She tutored Nancy, and (in private, at least) they were close. Carly and Bobby were the only ones who saw that Nancy was always performing, and that she was cracking under the pressure of being Holcomb’s golden girl. This secret connected Carly and Bobby. Now that Bobby is an outsider, too, they’re bound closer than ever.

Determined to clear Bobby’s name, Carly dives into the murder investigation and ends up in trouble with the local authorities. But that’s nothing compared to the wrath she faces from Holcomb once the real perpetrators are caught. When her father is appointed to defend the killers of the Clutter family, the entire town labels the Flemings as traitors. Now Carly must fight for what she knows is right.

Kansas City Royals: 50 Years - A Golden History

By George Brett, Frank White, Eric Hosmer, Dayton Moore, Ryan Lefebvre & Dick Kaegel

Skybox Press
Hardcover (96 pages)

Kansas City Royals: 50 Years - A Golden History
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For 50 years, the most True Blue fans in baseball have loved and supported their Royals.
This is that story
.


Kansas City Royals: 50 Years: A Golden History is the Royals one and only official 50th anniversary commemorative book. Featuring more than 100 photos, classic memorabilia, and original essays by George Brett, Eric Hosmer, Frank White, Jeff Montgomery, Bret Saberhagen, Denny Matthews, Dayton Moore, and others, this is the ultimate keepsake and perfect gift for Royals fans young and old.

From the extra innings victory in the inaugural game in 1969 to today s bright future...from the first World Series title in 1985 to the thrilling 2015 championship...so many great players and so many unforgettable moments all captured here in this one-of-a-kind, must have collectible.

This is our city. This is our team.

#RaisedRoyal

Tales from the Kansas City Chiefs Sideline: A Collection of the Greatest Chiefs Stories Ever Told (Tales from the Team)

By Bob Gretz

Gretz Bob
Hardcover (256 pages)

Tales from the Kansas City Chiefs Sideline: A Collection of the Greatest Chiefs Stories Ever Told (Tales from the Team)
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  • Tales from the Kansas City Chiefs Sideline A Collection of the Greatest Chiefs Stories Ever Told
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Beginning with their founding as the Dallas Texans of the American Football League in 1960, the Kansas City Chiefs have been one of professional football’s most storied franchises. In Tales from the Kansas City Chiefs Sideline, veteran sportswriter Bob Gretz brings the team’s rich history to life.

Gretz begins with the Chiefs’ visionary, 27-year-old owner Lamar Hunt, who founded not only a team but an entire league. After the Texans won the AFL championship in 1962, Hunt moved the team out of his hometown to Kansas City. Two Super Bowl appearances as the representative of the AFL culminated in a Chiefs’ championship in 1970, despite being a double-digit underdog to the Minnesota Vikings. It would be the final game featuring an AFL team, as the Chiefs and nine other teams merged with the NFL. Gretz covers the battles leading up to the merger along with the high and low points in team history—the lean years (1972–88); the “Carl and Marty” era, when the team made the play-offs in six consecutive seasons; the “Joe and Marcus” show of 1993; the dismal 2008 season; and the team’s 2013 renewal under Andy Reid and John Dorsey.

Tales from the Kansas City Chiefs Sideline is a must-have for any Chiefs fan!

Skyhorse Publishing, as well as our Sports Publishing imprint, are proud to publish a broad range of books for readers interested in sports—books about baseball, pro football, college football, pro and college basketball, hockey, or soccer, we have a book about your sport or your team.

Whether you are a New York Yankees fan or hail from Red Sox nation; whether you are a die-hard Green Bay Packers or Dallas Cowboys fan; whether you root for the Kentucky Wildcats, Louisville Cardinals, UCLA Bruins, or Kansas Jayhawks; whether you route for the Boston Bruins, Toronto Maple Leafs, Montreal Canadiens, or Los Angeles Kings; we have a book for you. While not every title we publish becomes a New York Times bestseller or a national bestseller, we are committed to publishing books on subjects that are sometimes overlooked by other publishers and to authors whose work might not otherwise find a home.

True Tales of Old-Time Kansas: Revised Edition

By David Dary

Univ Pr of Kansas
Paperback (336 pages)

True Tales of Old-Time Kansas: Revised Edition
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"Authentic history, delightfully told" is the way Ray A. Billington, renowned historian of the Old West, described this collection. David Dary, award-winning chronicler of life on the frontier plains, is at his entertaining best in these thirty-nine episodes, sagas, and tales from Kansas's vigorous, free-spirited past. Many of the stories appeared in Dary's True Tales of the Old-Time Plains, but that book, out of print for several years, focused on the Great Plains in general. This new edition, revised and with additional stories and a new title, pulls together tales about people, animals and events in what is today Kansas, including the old territory of Kansas (1854-1861) that stretched from the Missouri River westward to the summit of the Rocky Mountains.

Many of the tales capture the romance, excitement, and adventure of the Old West, while others have the tempo of a quiet life surrounded by the immensity of the plains and prairies. There are well-known characters: Bill Cody, the Dalton gang, the Bloody Benders, William Clarke Quantrill, Abraham Lincoln, and Frederic Remington, who once owned a Kansas sheep ranch and later was a silent partner in a Kansas City saloon before he became a well-known artist.

And there are stories, too, about little-known characters such as Prairie Dog Dave Morrow, who made his living capturing live prairie dogs. Dary relates tales of lost treasure and sudden riches, of outlaws and "jayhawk" raiders, of massacres and heroics. A generous number of illustrations help bring the tales to life.

Stark Mad Abolitionists: Lawrence, Kansas, and the Battle over Slavery in the Civil War Era

By Robert K. Sutton

Sutton Robert K
Hardcover (304 pages)

Stark Mad Abolitionists: Lawrence, Kansas, and the Battle over Slavery in the Civil War Era
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  • Stark Mad Abolitionists Lawrence Kansas and the Battle Over Slavery in the Civil War Era
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A town at the center of the United States becomes the site of an ongoing struggle for freedom and equality.

In May, 1854, Massachusetts was in an uproar. A judge, bound by the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850, had just ordered a young African American man who had escaped from slavery in Virginia and settled in Boston to be returned to bondage in the South. An estimated fifty thousand citizens rioted in protest. Observing the scene was Amos Adams Lawrence, a wealthy Bostonian, who “waked up a stark mad Abolitionist.” As quickly as Lawrence waked up, he combined his fortune and his energy with others to create the New England Emigrant Aid Company to encourage abolitionists to emigrate to Kansas to ensure that it would be a free state.

The town that came to bear Lawrence’s name became the battleground for the soul of America, with abolitionists battling pro-slavery Missourians who were determined to make Kansas a slave state. The onset of the Civil War only escalated the violence, leading to the infamous raid of William Clarke Quantrill when he led a band of vicious Confederates (including Frank James, whose brother Jesse would soon join them) into town and killed two hundred men and boys.

Stark Mad Abolitionists shows how John Brown, Reverend Henry Ward Beecher, Sam Houston, and Abraham Lincoln all figure into the story of Lawrence and “Bleeding Kansas.” The story of Amos Lawrence’s eponymous town is part of a bigger story of people who were willing to risk their lives and their fortunes in the ongoing struggle for freedom and equality.

Kansas (U.S.A. Travel Guides)

By Ann Heinrichs

Childs World Inc
Library Binding (40 pages)

Kansas (U.S.A. Travel Guides)
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From Monument Rocks, badlands, and plains to cowboys in Dodge City, there's lots to see and do in Kansas! Additional features include maps on each spread, state symbols, famous people, fact bubbles, and informative captions that highlight some of the things that make Kansas special. A table of contents, sources for further research, a phonetic glossary, and an index support readers and extend learning.

Tales from the Kansas City Royals Dugout: A Collection of the Greatest Royals Stories Ever Told (Tales from the Team)

By Denny Matthews

Matthews Denny
Hardcover (208 pages)

Tales from the Kansas City Royals Dugout: A Collection of the Greatest Royals Stories Ever Told (Tales from the Team)
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  • Tales from the Kansas City Royals Dugout A Collection of the Greatest Royals Stories Ever Told
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Amos Otis, Frank White, George Brett, Hal McRae, Dan Quisenberry, Bret Saberhagen, Paul Splittorff—one mention of any of those names can bring about visions of great baseball, determination, and winning. However, one vision outweighs all others: the boys in blue . . . the Kansas City Royals.

The Kansas City Royals, an expansion club in the American League in 1969, struggled during their early existence. It didn’t take long, however, before the Royals established themselves as one of the most successful franchises in baseball. That success culminated with the winning of the 1985 World Series. Since 1969, the Royals have developed great players that have had fun. Along the way, they also have developed a winning tradition. Although the Royals have received the “small-market” tag in recent years, the organization still boasts a proud heritage, and in 2014 they recorded their first playoff victory in almost thirty years en route to a seven-game World Series matchup against the San Francisco Giants. In this reissue of Tales from the Kansas City Royals Dugout, first published in 2004 and updated through the 2014 season, longtime Royals radio broadcaster Denny Matthews relives the club’s great moments and proud tradition.

Sit back and enjoy never-before-told anecdotes, including from the team’s great rivalries with the New York Yankees, Oakland A’s, and the remarkable players who have helped form the legend of the Kansas City Royals.

Skyhorse Publishing, as well as our Sports Publishing imprint, are proud to publish a broad range of books for readers interested in sports—books about baseball, pro football, college football, pro and college basketball, hockey, or soccer, we have a book about your sport or your team.

Whether you are a New York Yankees fan or hail from Red Sox nation; whether you are a die-hard Green Bay Packers or Dallas Cowboys fan; whether you root for the Kentucky Wildcats, Louisville Cardinals, UCLA Bruins, or Kansas Jayhawks; whether you route for the Boston Bruins, Toronto Maple Leafs, Montreal Canadiens, or Los Angeles Kings; we have a book for you. While not every title we publish becomes a New York Times bestseller or a national bestseller, we are committed to publishing books on subjects that are sometimes overlooked by other publishers and to authors whose work might not otherwise find a home.


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