Portal:Kansas

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The Kansas Portal

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Kansas (/ˈkænzəs/ (About this soundlisten)) is a state in the center of the United States. Its capital is Topeka and its largest city is Wichita. Kansas is bordered by Nebraska to the north; Missouri to the east; Oklahoma to the south; and Colorado to the west. Kansas is named after the Kansas River, which in turn was named after the Kansa Native Americans who lived along its banks. 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 Americans in 1827 with the establishment of Fort Leavenworth. 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, hence the unofficial nickname "The Free State".

By 2015, Kansas was one of the most productive agricultural states, producing high yields of wheat, corn, sorghum, and soybeans. Kansas, which has an area of 82,278 square miles (213,100 square kilometers) is the 15th-largest state by area and is the 34th most-populous of the 50 states with a population of 2,913,314. Residents of Kansas are called Kansans. Mount Sunflower is Kansas's highest point at 4,039 feet (1,231 meters). (Full article...)

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Marjorie Schick (August 29, 1941 – December 17, 2017) was an innovative American jewelry artist and academic who taught art for 50 years. Approaching sculptural creations, her avant-garde pieces have been widely collected. Her works form part of the permanent collections of many of the world's leading art museums, including the Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg, Russia; the Museum of Arts and Design in New York City; the National Museum of Modern Art in Kyoto, Japan; the Philadelphia Museum of Art in Pennsylvania; and the Victoria and Albert Museum of London.

Growing up in the Heartland of the United States, Schick was raised by her single mother, who as an art instructor nurtured her creative talent. After attending the University of Wisconsin–Madison, she completed a master's degree in fine art at Indiana University Bloomington. She then moved to Kansas, shortly thereafter beginning a lifetime association with Pittsburg State University, where she taught as an art professor. (Full article...)

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Riley (Kansas) County Courthouse 1.jpg
Credit: Kevin Zollman
Riley County Courthouse in Manhattan 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.

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Orval Grove in 1948

Orval Leroy Grove (August 29, 1919 – April 20, 1992) was an American pitcher in Major League Baseball who played for ten seasons in the American League with the Chicago White Sox. In 207 career games, Grove pitched 1,176 innings and posted a win–loss record of 63–73, with 66 complete games, 11 shutouts, and a 3.78 earned run average (ERA).

The only freshman on the Proviso High School varsity baseball team, Grove's pitching ability attracted the attention of the White Sox. After signing with the team in 1937, Grove moved between the major leagues and minor leagues for a few seasons until 1943, when he found a solid place in the White Sox's pitching rotation. Grove had a career-year in 1943, finishing the season with career-bests in ERA, wins, and complete games; in 1944, he made his only All-Star appearance. (Full article...)
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