history

Up To Date
4:39 pm
Mon July 7, 2014

History And Future of Kansas City Scottish Rite Temple

Kansas City Scottish Rite Building located at the intersection of Paseo and Linwood Boulevard.
Credit Mlaaker / Flickr-CC

When you think of the Masons, images of secret societies and rituals may come to mind—but what about their architecture?

Read more
Up to Date
9:00 am
Thu July 3, 2014

For 200 Years, That Star-Spangled Banner Does Still Wave

The Star-Spangled Banner, the flag that inspired the lyrics to our national anthem, is on display at The Smithsonian in Washington, DC.
Credit National Museum of American History

Kansas Citians - or at least Chiefs fans - may have our own take on the closing line of the national anthem, but this Independence Day we can join the rest of America to celebrate the song's 200th anniversary. That's right: it's been two centuries since Francis Scott Key first commemorated the symbol of the home of the brave

Read more
Central Standard
4:49 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

Historic Dividing Lines In Public Education Still Affect Kansas And Missouri Schools

US Marshalls escort Ruby Bridges to and from school in New Orleans in 1960.
Credit CC Public Domain

  

This spring marked the 60th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education, a Kansas case that went to the Supreme Court and ultimately ended with the ruling that the segregation of schools was unconstitutional. In the first half of Tuesday's Central Standard, we shared some little-known stories of the desegregation process from the months and years that followed.

Read more
Up to Date
9:00 am
Thu June 19, 2014

The Battle Of Westport 150 Years Later

Mural of the Battle of Westport
Credit Newell Convers Wyeth / Missouri State Capitol

In October of 1864, Kansas City played host to a dramatic clash of Union and Confederate forces. Thousands of troops squared off along Brush Creek and Blue River in the Battle of Westport, the largest Civil War battle west of the Mississippi River. On Thursday's Up to Date Steve Kraske talks with preservationist Daniel Smith about the legacy of the "Gettysburg of the West."

Read more
Up to Date
9:00 am
Tue June 17, 2014

Dr. Mary Frances Berry: The Legacy Of Sixties Activism

Credit maryfrancesberry.com

For four decades, Mary Frances Berry has been a civil rights activist. Famously fired from the US Civil Rights Commission before being rehired by President Reagan, she’s gone on to chair the commission, serve as the first woman and African American to be chancellor of the University of Colorado, and teach legal history at the University of Pennsylvania.

Read more
Up to Date
9:00 am
Tue June 17, 2014

Jeff Shaara Is Back With Third Civil War Novel

Credit www.randomhouse.com

Bestselling author Jeff Shaara is renowned for his gritty depiction of Civil War battles. His fictionalized accounts of the historical events have appeared in previous works and he returns with his latest offering, The Smoke at Dawn. On Tuesday's Up to Date Steve Kraske talks with the author about how he fleshes out the known facts and in doing so creates a detailed account of the War Between the States.

Read more
Central Standard
4:59 pm
Fri June 6, 2014

The History of Recent Political Conventions

Ronald Reagan on the podium with Gerald Ford at the 1976 Republican National Convention in Kansas City after narrowly losing the presidential nomination.
Credit Executive Office of the President of the United States

Kansas City is getting the once-over this week from members of the Republican National Committee, who are in town to see whether we have what it takes to host the party’s 2016 national convention.

The last convention here came in 1976, and it was a hummer: A candidate named Ronald Reagan was taking on the incumbent president, Gerald Ford, and the battle went down to convention week.

Read more
Beyond Our Borders
4:01 pm
Mon May 19, 2014

How One Kansas City Neighborhood Opened Doors, And The Leaders Who Called It Home

Google Street View shot of Sheraton Estates, a neighborhood on the east side of Kansas City, Mo., has been home to many influential African-Americans in the community.
maps.google.com

Sheraton Estates was the first place in Kansas City, Mo., where African-Americans sought out to build new homes south of 27th Street. The suburban-style subdivision was built in 1957. It was marketed to, and, historically, home to many influential African-American leaders in the city.

Read more
Central Standard
1:12 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

Mother's Day: A Radical History, Plus Kansas Citians' Stories

Flowers are a nice gesture on Mother's Day, but there's more to this holiday than meets the eye.
Credit julie / Flickr, Creative Commons

You could be forgiven if you happen to believe that Mother's Day is a holiday invented by florists, candy stores and greeting card companies. In point of fact, however, this holiday has a hard-won, grassroots history that puts today's celebrations in context.

On Central Standard, a historian introduced us to three women who lobbied for a mother's day of sorts: the first out of a desire for peace, the second to decrease infant mortality through education, and the third in service of her own professional yearnings.

Read more
Up To Date
9:00 am
Mon May 5, 2014

Kansas City's World War I Monuments

James J. Heiman is the author of Voices in Bronze and Stone: Kansas City's World War I Monuments and Memorials
Credit Whoever Credit Goes To / Flickr--CC

Everyone is familiar with the National World War I Monument in Kansas City, but there are others.

On Monday, we'll hear the stories behind some of the most prominent WWI monuments and memorials in Kansas City. James J. Heiman the author of Voices In the Bronze and Stone: Kansas City's World War I Monuments and Memorials joins us.

Guest:

James J. Heiman is the author of Voices In Bronze and Stone: Kansas City's World War I Monuments and Memorials.

Read more
Up to Date
9:00 am
Tue April 29, 2014

War: How Violence Can Lead To Stability

Ian Morris is the author of 'War! What Is It Good For? Conflict and the Progress of Civilization from Primates to Robots .'

War is bloody, tragic and violent, but it also has benefits for society—even if it doesn’t feel that way when the bullets are flying.

On Tuesday's Up to Date, we talk with a historian about his idea that war ultimately leads to stability and prosperity, despite the high body counts it takes to get there.

Guest:

Read more
Up to Date
9:00 am
Thu April 10, 2014

A Look Into Kansas City's Past

John Simonson is the author of Kansas City 1940: A Watershed Year.

1940 was a pivotal year for Kansas City. Tom Pendergast’s rule through corruption and debauchery had crumbled, leaving the new local government to reform a city hungry for jazz and liquor.

On Thursday's Up to Date, we examine how Kansas City was different in the World War II era. On the way, we take a look at how the “Paris of the Plains” changed from a den of iniquity to the city we know today.

Guest:

Read more
Up to Date
11:12 am
Mon March 31, 2014

Examining 100 Years Of The Panama Canal

It's been 100 years since the Panama Canal was completed.
Credit Lyn Gateley / Flickr-CC

You’ve heard of the man, his plan and that canal: Panama. Well, it’s been 100 years since its construction, and the waterway is getting a facelift.

On Monday's Up to Date, we talk about a new local exhibit that explores that century of innovation.

Guest:

  • Alberto Aleman Zubieta, former CEO of the Panama Canal Authority
  • Lisa Browar, president of the Linda Hall Library
Read more
Up to Date
10:27 am
Thu March 20, 2014

Tracing The Atomic Age

The Atomic Age prompted many themed products-- some more dangerous than others.
Credit GetHiroshima / Flickr-CC

If you want drama, the story of how we developed atomic energy has it. From the novelty of X-rays to the destructive power unleashed in Hiroshima, to a major energy source — all the up and downs are there. 

On Thursday's Up to Date, we talk with an author who has traced the details of these events and many in-between to construct a history of the atomic age. We look at how scientists managed to get from Marie Curie’s discovery to the Manhattan Project and beyond. 

Guest:

Read more
Up to Date
10:02 am
Wed March 19, 2014

Looking Back At The U-2 Spy Plane Incident

Pilot Francis Gary Powers was shot down by the Soviet Union while flying his U-2 spy plane in 1960.
Credit RIA Novosti archive / Wikimedia Commons

Threats to sovereignty along the Black Sea, lots of discussions about spying … it all brings back memories of the Cold War.

On Wednesday's Up to Date, we talk about one of the most notorious incidents of that period. When Russia shot down the U-2 spy plane, pilot Gary Powers became the international face of a mission gone wrong. His son joins us to talk about that event.

Guest:

Read more
Central Standard
10:55 pm
Fri February 14, 2014

The History Of The Native Peoples Of The Kansas City Region

Camp of Pawnee Indians on the Platte Valley c. 1866
Credit Snapshots of the Past / Flickr -- Creative Commons

Long before the foundation of Oklahoma Joe's was laid or even the first oxen left Kansas City on the Santa Fe Trail, thousands of distinct people called the confluence of the Kansas and Missouri rivers home. In fact, the history of human settlement goes back over 13,000 years to when mastodons roamed where cows now graze. The Kansas City area was home to Clovis peoples and later many more Native Americans, who either called the area home or were pushed here by white colonists.  Their legacy reverberates around the communities of Shawnee, Wyandotte and others.

Read more
Up to Date
10:32 am
Mon February 3, 2014

Saving Art From War: The Monuments Men

Laurence Sickman, Paul Gardner and James Reeds were all Kansas City Monuments Men.
The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art and The James A. Reeds Family

They were a group of soldiers with something in common — a knowledge of art and how to preserve it.

On Monday's Up to Date, we talk about the Monuments Men, a special division from the Allied forces during World War II who braved the battlefields to save priceless art and architecture from the ravages of war.

Read more
Up to Date
9:49 am
Wed January 29, 2014

WWI: Who Lit The Fire?

Sean McMeekin is the author of July 1914: Countdown to War.

When you think of World War I, you may picture soldiers fighting in the trenches, but the whole conflict started with the assassination of an Austrian archduke.

On Wednesday's Up to Date, we talk with historian Sean McMeekin, who says it was a group of corrupt statesmen who held the match that lit the European powder keg.

Guest:

Read more
People
7:46 am
Fri November 29, 2013

Kansas Agency Encourages A New Black Friday Tradition

A Kansas agency is urging black families talk to sit down and interview their family members on Friday. The Kansas African American Affairs Commission is calling the oral history project called “New Black Friday.”

Read more
Up to Date
11:13 am
Thu November 21, 2013

Warren G. Harding: America's Least Favorite President

Historian Phillip Payne joins Steve Kraske to talk about his biography of Pres. Warren G. Harding

During his presidency, Warren G. Harding was generally well liked among Americans. In contemporary times however, Harding's cronyism and corruption have sent him to the bottom of favorite president lists.

On Thursday's Up to Date, we talk with historian Phillip Payne about Harding's upbringing, his ascendancy to power, and the scandals that still plague his image to this day.

Read more
Up to Date
2:33 pm
Tue November 12, 2013

The Film That Shaped America's JFK Memories

The Zapruder film recorded the moment Kennedy was shot.

The silently haunting images of the Zapruder film captured the moment John F. Kennedy was shot during that famous Dallas parade in 1963. Those images have become part of the mythology that surrounds the event, both for the conspiracy theorists and others. 

On Wednesday's Up to Date, we talk with historian Max Holland, who has analyzed the effect of the film on how the American people understand the 50-year-old assassination.

Guest: 

Read more
Up to Date
1:44 pm
Tue October 29, 2013

Persian Poetry Brings The Past To The Present

Rumi's poetry has been popular for centuries, as seen in this 16th century book.
Credit National Library of France

It's been 800 years, but the words of Rumi, a 13th century Persian poet, still seem to entrance people

In the second part of Wednesday's Up to Date, Steve Kraske speaks with Rumi scholar Coleman Barks about the poet's legacy and why his verses continue to thrive.

Guest:

Read more
Up to Date
4:00 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

WWI: Making History Come Alive

Author Robert Massie discusses World War I with Steve Kraske.

Making history come alive is tricky, but some historians manage to paint people like the czars of Russia or Kaiser Wilhelm of Germany not just as dusty textbook figures.

In the first part of Wednesday's Up to Date, we talk with historian Robert Massie about his vivid descriptions of the powerful people pulling the strings behind World War I.

Guest:

Read more
Up to Date
12:00 pm
Sun October 20, 2013

1913: Before The Great War

Charles Emmerson joins Steve Kraske to discuss the state of the world in 1913, just before World War I started.

By 1919, much of continental Europe lay in ruins in the aftermath of World War I. Prior to that conflict, with three European empires ruled by the “Kingly cousins,” most people thought a war was nearly impossible.

Read more
Up to Date
4:00 pm
Thu October 10, 2013

Looking Back At The Sunflower Ammunition Plant

The Sunflower Ammunition Plant is the focus of a new exhibit at the Johnson County Museum.
Credit Thomas Long/Flickr-CC

The Midwest is generally a calm place, but a new museum exhibit in Johnson County is recalling a place that was potentially explosive.

On Friday's Up to Date, we talk about the history and development of the Sunflower Army Ammunition Plant. A former plant manager and the top government official both join us today to give an inside look at what it was like to work there.

Guests:

Read more
KC Currents
4:42 pm
Mon July 22, 2013

New Book Explores Stories Of 'Extraordinary Black Missourians'

Written histories of Missouri (and arguably, all states) often overlook the contributions of African Americans, but a new book by St. Louis-based authors John and Sylvia Wright attempts to fill in the gaps.

Extraordinary Black Missourians: Pioneers, Leaders, Performers, Athletes and Other Notables Who’ve Made History  includes stories about well-known Missourians like Tina Turner, Dred Scott, and Langston Hughes, but also includes untold stories of little-known African Americans.

Here are a few stories from the book, as told by the Wrights.

Read more
Up to Date
9:52 am
Mon June 24, 2013

Looking Back At Gettysburg

Allen Guelzo joins Steve Kraske to talk about Gettysburg on Up to Date.

It’s been 150 years since the muskets fired and men in both blue and gray fell to the ground at battleground in Pennsylvania. Gettysburg’s dubious distinction was to have the most casualties of any battle of the Civil War. 

On Monday's Up to Date, Steve Kraske talks with Allen Guelzo, author of Gettysburg: The Last Invasion, about the politics and power plays that surrounded the famous battle.

Read more
Up to Date
10:08 am
Fri June 21, 2013

Real Pirates Commandeer Kansas City's Union Station

Real Pirates will take over Union Station from June 22 to January 4, 2014.
Credit Union Station Kansas City / National Geographic

Blackbeard. Jack Sparrow. Captain Hook. We’ve seen the ships, peg legs, skulls and crossbones. They cross the turbulent high seas on the big screen, in books and in our imaginations. But who were pirates, really?

This Saturday, Union Station opens the doors to its “Real Pirates” exhibit. Local actors and actresses bring to life more than 200 artifacts unearthed from the Whydah , a slave ship hijacked by pirates that sunk during a violent storm in 1717. It’s the first real pirate ship to be found off the coast of the U.S.

Read more
Up to Date
12:00 pm
Sun May 19, 2013

WWII: The Last Year Of Europe's Battles

Rick Atkinson
Credit rainydaybooks.com

Omaha, Juno, Utah, Gold and Sword. The names of the Normandy beaches echo in the annals of World War II history, but the iconic invasion wasn’t the last step of the European campaign.

Read more
Up to Date
12:00 pm
Sun May 5, 2013

Pulling Up The Roots Of Words

Let's Bring Back: The Lost Language Edition

Ever wonder where the word hornswoggle comes from? How about doubloon?

Read more

Pages