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