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Historical Visits

130 Years on Strawberry Hill

Kansas City, Kansas has the distinction of being known as “The Melting Pot of the Midwest”. A visit to the Strawberry Hill Museum, at 720 North 4th Street, showcases the contribution that Slavic nations have had on our growing city. The area was originally named Splitlog Hill after the wealthy mill owner, Mathias Splitlog. He parceled out the land to emigrant families from Eastern Europe. Here they built a community where they could worship freely, and celebrate their Slavic heritage. Over time the community grew, and in 1887, John and Mary Scroggs had a large Victorian style home built overlooking the confluence of the Kansas and Missouri rivers.Continue reading

The red and white airplane is a reverse color scheme to the standard TWA airliners.

Up Up And Away to the TWA Museum

Let’s see a show of hands of the people who knew there is a TWA Museum in downtown Kansas City, Missouri. Well it looks like some of you knew, but this was a surprise for us. We made a stop in on a Saturday morning to check it out. Located at 10 Richards Road, in the Charles B. Wheeler Airport, this unique museum highlights the 75 year lifespan of the airline. Feel free to visit them on Tuesday through Saturdays. They are open from 10:00 to 4:00 each of those days, but double-check if the weather is especially bad.Continue reading

An old wooden bar is part of the scenery at The Majestic Restaurant.

Shady History at Majestic Restaurant

Just about everyone who has driven by 931 Broadway, in downtown Kansas City, Missouri, has seen the bright red awning over the entrance of The Majestic Restaurant. The building started life over 100 years ago as the Fitzpatrick Saloon. Built in 1911, the same year Jim Pendergast (Boss Tom’s older brother) passed away, it housed the saloon and a bordello. At that time, it resided in the center of the city, and became a key location in its future. Continue reading

Wooden barrels of bourbon are secured to an old wagon in a display at the Arabia Steamboat Museum.

Dredging Up the Past at the Arabia Steamboat Museum

Our visit to the Arabia Steamboat Museum reminded us why we like the City Market, in downtown Kansas City, Missouri. This place bustles with vendors, hawkers, musicians, shoppers, and history seekers. The last category is often on their way to the museum, which is located in one of the permanent buildings that surround the market. The Arabia was a side wheeled steamer built in 1853. It plied the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers, before being purchased and relocated to the Missouri River.Continue reading

Huron, Indian, Cemetery, Kansas City, Kansas, Native American, burial

Honoring the Past at the Huron Indian Cemetery

Kansas City, Kansas isn’t as old as some of the other large Midwest cities. That doesn’t mean it doesn’t have just as colorful a history as the others. A recent visit to the Huron Indian Cemetery, on 7th Street just north of Ann Avenue, reminded us just how unique our beginnings were. The name Huron was a derogatory nickname bestowed on the Wyandot Indian tribe by the French, in reference to the headpieces worn by tribe members. The grounds were listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1971. The cemetery has been officially renamed Wyandot National Burying Ground.Continue reading

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See History Come Alive at Missouri Town 1855

Sitting on 30 acres, on the east side of Lake Jacomo is Missouri Town 1855. This open air museum contains more than 25 structures dating from the time just before the Civil War. Interpreters, dressed in period attire, interact with visitors to explain the lifestyle of the era.  Although Missouri Town was never an actual town, it was assembled to represent a mid-19th-century Missouri settlement. The assortment of buildings were moved to their current site from other locations in Missouri.

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Exploring Kaw Point Park like Lewis & Clark

The first recorded “outsiders” to visit the Kansas City area were Lewis & Clark on June 26, 1804. They made their encampment at the confluence of the Missouri and Kaw Rivers, at what is now known as Kaw Point. For three days they rested, repaired their boats, and explored the countryside. They had been sent by President Jefferson, along with a crew of 51 men, to trace the Missouri River to its source. The hope was to find a route to the Pacific Ocean.Continue reading