Portal:Kansas Article

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Introduction

Flag of Kansas.svg

Kansas /ˈkænzəs/ ( About this sound listen) is a U.S. state in the Midwestern United States. Its capital is Topeka and its largest city is Wichita. Kansas is named after the Kansa Native American tribe, which inhabited the area. The tribe's name (natively kką:ze) is often said to mean "people of the (south) wind" although this was probably not the term's original meaning. For thousands of years, what is now Kansas was home to numerous and diverse Native American tribes. Tribes in the eastern part of the state generally lived in villages along the river valleys. Tribes in the western part of the state were semi-nomadic and hunted large herds of bison.

Kansas was first settled by European Americans in 1812, in what is now Bonner Springs, but the pace of settlement accelerated in the 1850s, in the midst of political wars over the slavery debate. When it was officially opened to settlement by the U.S. government in 1854 with the Kansas–Nebraska Act, abolitionist Free-Staters from New England and pro-slavery settlers from neighboring Missouri rushed to the territory to determine whether Kansas would become a free state or a slave state. Thus, the area was a hotbed of violence and chaos in its early days as these forces collided, and was known as Bleeding Kansas. The abolitionists prevailed, and on January 29, 1861, Kansas entered the Union as a free state. After the Civil War, the population of Kansas grew rapidly when waves of immigrants turned the prairie into farmland.

Selected article

Fortscottks.JPG

Fort Scott National Historic Site is a historical area under the control of the United States National Park Service in Bourbon County, Kansas, United States. Named after Mexican–American War General Winfield Scott, during the middle of the 19th century it served as a military base for army action in what was the edge of settlement in 1850. For the next quarter century, it was used as a supply base and to provide security in turbulent areas during the opening of the West to settlement, a period which included Bleeding Kansas and the American Civil War.

The current national historic site protects 20 historic structures, a parade ground, and five acres (20,000 m²) of restored tallgrass prairie, inside the city of Fort Scott. It is open to visitors most days of the year.

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Spotlight city

Topeka, Kansas.JPG

Topeka ( Kansa: Tó Ppí Kˀé) is the capital city of the U.S. state of Kansas and the county seat of Shawnee County. It is situated along the Kansas River in the central part of Shawnee County, located in northeast Kansas, in the Central United States. The population was 122,377 at the 2000 census, and it was estimated to be 122,647 in the 2007 census. The Topeka Metropolitan Statistical Area, which includes Shawnee, Jackson, Jefferson, Osage, and Wabaunsee counties, had an estimated population of 226,268 in the year 2003. Three ships of the US Navy have been named USS Topeka in honor of the city.

In the 1840s, wagon trains made their way west from Independence, Missouri, on a 2,000 miles (3,000 km) journey following what would come to be known as the Oregon Trail. In the early 1850s, traffic along the Oregon Trail was supplemented by trade on a new military road stretching from Fort Leavenworth through Topeka to the newly-established Fort Riley. After a decade of Bleeding Kansas abolitionist and pro-slavery conflict, the Kansas territory was admitted to the Union in 1861 as the 34th state. Topeka was finally chosen as the capital, with Dr. Charles Robinson as the first governor. In 1862, Cyrus K. Holliday donated a tract of land to the state for the construction of a state capitol. Construction of the Kansas State Capitol began in 1866. It would take 37 years to build the capitol, first the east wing, and then the west wing, and finally the central building, using Kansas limestone. Home to the first African-American kindergarten west of the Mississippi River, Topeka became the home of Linda Brown, the named plaintiff in Brown v. Board of Education which was the case responsible for eliminating the standard of "separate but equal", and requiring racial integration in American public schools.

Selected image

Konza2.jpg
Credit: Edwin Olson
A view of the Flint Hills in eastern Kansas.

Important dates in Kansas' history

July–August 1541 
Coronado explores Kansas
April 30, 1803 
Louisiana Purchase Treaty signed
May 30, 1854 
Kansas Territory organized
July 29, 1859 
Constitution adopted by convention
January 29, 1861
Kansas becomes 34th state
August 21, 1863
Quantrill's Raid on Lawrence
Spring 1879
Exodusters
February 19, 1881 
First state to Constitutionally prohibit alcohol
1890s
Populist Revolt
July 1951
Great Flood of 1951
May 17, 1954 
Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka

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State facts


State symbols:

The American Bison, Kansas' state mammal.

Selected biography

Governor Schoeppel

Andrew Frank Schoeppel (November 23, 1894 – January 21, 1962) was an American politician and a member of the Republican Party. He was the 29th Governor of Kansas from 1943 to 1947 and a U.S. Senator from 1949 until his death. He was born in 1894 in Claflin, Kansas and died in 1962 of abdominal cancer at the National Naval Medical Center at Bethesda, Maryland.

Before serving as governor, Schoeppel was the seventh head college football coach for the Fort Hays State University Tigers located in Hays, Kansas and he held that position for the 1929 season. His career coaching record at Fort Hays was 2 wins, 5 losses, and 0 ties. As of completion of the 2007 season, this ranks him 20th at Fort Hays in total wins and 19th at Fort Hays in winning percentage.

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