Kansas State Flag
Kansas State Seal
derived from the Siouan word Kansa meaning "People of the south wind",
is a midwestern state in the United
States. The U.S. postal abbreviation for the state is KS and the
state flower is the sunflower. The state motto is "Ad astra per aspera",
the state song is "Home on the Range", the state bird is the western
meadowlark, and the state animal is the buffalo.
The population is
2,688,418, as of 2000. The largest city is Wichita.
- % water
- Total (2000)
January 29, 1861
: UTC-6/-5 Mountain: UTC-7/-6 counties are Central except for 4
counties on western border
94°38'W to 102°1'34"W
on the Range"
astra per aspera"
as part of the Louisiana Purchase, was annexed to the United
States in 1803 as unorganized territory. Kansas
then became part of the Missouri Territory until 1821. Then the Kansas-Nebraska
Act became law on May 30, 1854 established the US territories of Nebraska
Leavenworth was the first community in the area around 1827. To
travellers enroute to Utah,
California, or Oregon,
Kansas was a waystop and
outfitting place. On March 30, 1855 "Border Ruffians" from Missouri
invaded Kansas during the
territory's first election and forced the election of a pro-slavery
became the 34th state of the Union on January 29, 1861. Civil War veterans
constructed homesteads in Kansas
following the war. On February 19, 1861 it became the first U.S. state
to prohibit all alcoholic beverages.
On August 21, 1863,
William Quantrill led Quantrill's Raid into Lawrence,
Kansas destroying much of the city and killing many people.
Wild Bill Hickok
was a deputy marshal at Fort Riley, Kansas,
and a marshal at Hays, Kansas and Abilene,
was home to President Eisenhower, Presidential Candidate Senator Bob
Dole, Amelia Earheart, and Carrie Nation.
The State Capital
The Governor of
the State is Kathleen Sebelius (Democrat) and the two U.S. Senators
are Sam Brownback and Pat Roberts (both Republicans).
has a reputation as a progressive state with many firsts in legislative
initiatives including being the first state to institute a system of
workers compensation (1910). The Council-manager government was adopted
by many larger Kansas cities in the years following World War I while
many American cities were being run by political machines or organized
crime. Kansas schools both public and private continue to have some
of the highest standards in the nation. Kansas
was first among the states to ban the concept of separate but equal
schools. Brown vs. Board of Education took place in Topeka,
Kansas and banned racially segregated schools throughout the US.
is bordered by Nebraska
on the north, Missouri on
the east, Oklahoma on the
south, and Colorado on the
west. It is located equidistant from the Pacific and the Atlantic Ocean.
The geographic center of North America is located in Osborne County.
This spot is used as the central reference point for all maps produced
by the government. The geographic center of the 48 contiguous states
is located in Smith County, and the geographic center of Kansas
is located in Barton County.
- The disputed
World's Largest Ball of Twine created in Cawker
City, Kansas August 15, 1953, is still growing.
- Big Brutus, the
World's Largest Electric Shovel resides in West
Mineral, Kansas. It is 160 ft tall and weighs 11 million pounds.
- Samuel Dinsmoor
created the Garden of Eden in Lucas, Kansas
in 1905, and opened it up to tourists in 1908. The garden features
sculptures of biblical scenes and political messages. One scene has
labor being crucified by a doctor, lawyer, banker, and preacher. Dinsmoor
even built his own mausoleum in which you can still see him today
in his concrete coffin by paying for the tour.
- The John Brown
museum is located Osawatomie, Kansas.
- The geographic
center of the United States
lies near Lebanon,
- The Sunflower
Army Ammunition Plant in De Soto, Kansas
opened in 1942 to manufactor gunpowder and munition propellants for
World War II. The plant sits on over 9000 acres (36 kmē) of land which
was made up of more than 100 farms.
- The boyhood home
of Dwight D. Eisenhower, the Eisenhower Library, and his grave are
located in Abilene, Kansas.
- The Greyhound
Hall of Fame is located in Abilene, Kansas.
Kansas is also the ending point of the Chisholm Trail where the
cattle driven from Texas were rail loaded.
- The house of
Carrie Nation, now a museum, is located in Medicine
Hall in Lecompton, Kansas is the location
where the Kansas Territorial Government convened and drafted a pro-slavery
- The Robert J.
Dole Institute of Politics where the largest collection of papers
for a non president politician is located. The institute is located
in Lawrence, Kansas on the campus of the
University of Kansas.
- The Boot Hill
Museum in Dodge City, Kansas features
Old West memorobilia and history.
- The Wizard of
Oz Museum in Liberal, Kansas features Dorothy's
House, a recreation of the farm house featured in the film The Wizard
- The National
Teachers Hall of Fame is located in Emporia,
- The National
Agriculture Center and Hall of Fame is located in Bonner
- The Horace Greeley
museum is located in Tribune, Kansas.
- The Kansas Cosmosphere
and Space Center, located in Hutchinson,
Kansas is affilicated with the Smithsonian Institute. The museum
features the largest collection of artfacts from the Russian Space
Program outside of Moscow. It is also home to Apollo 13, an SR-71
Blackbird, and many other space artifications.
The state is served
by two interstate highways with six spur routes. I-70 is a major east/west
route connecting to St. Louis, Missouri,
in the east and Denver, Colorado, in the
west. Cities along this route (from east to west) include Kansas
City, Lawrence, Topeka,
Junction City, Salina,
Hays, and Colby. I-35
is a major north/south route connecting to Des
Moines, Iowa, in the north and Oklahoma
City, Oklahoma, in the south. Cities along this route (from north
to south) include Kansas City (and its
suburbs), Ottawa, Emporia,
El Dorado, and Wichita.
Spur routes serve
as connections between the two major routes. I-135, a north/south route,
connects I-70 at Salina to I-35 at Wichita.
I-335, a northeast/southwest route, connects I-70 at Topeka
to I-35 at Emporia. I-335 and portions of
I-35 and I-70 make up the Kansas Turnpike. I-435 and I-635 serve a dual
purpose as connections between the major routes and bypasses around
the Kansas City metropolitan area. Other
bypasses are I-235 around Wichita and I-470
In January 2004,
the Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) announced the new Kansas
511 traveler information service. By calling 511, callers will get access
to information about road conditions, construction, closures, detours,
and weather conditions for the state highway system. Weather and road
condition information is updated every 15 minutes.
The 1999 total gross
state product of Kansas
was $81 billion, placing it 31st in the nation. Its per-capita income
is $27,816. The agricultural outputs of the state are cattle, wheat,
sorghum, soybeans, hogs and corn. The industrial outputs are transportation
equipment, commercial and private aircraft, food processing, publishing,
chemical products, machinery, apparel, petroleum and mining.
Important Cities and Towns
Colleges and Universities
- Baker University
- Fort Hays
Indian Nations University
- Saint Mary
- Tabor College
of Kansas Medical Center
Professional Sports Teams
- Kansas City T-Bones
- Wichita Wranglers
- Wichita Thunder
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