Kansas in History

Kansas: Kansas City - Wichita

Historical Events

  • 1854-05-30 Kansas-Nebraska Act repealed Missouri Compromise opens north slavery
  • 1854-05-30 Territories of Kansas & Nebraska created
  • 1855-03-24 Manhattan Kansas founded as New Boston Kansas
  • 1856-05-21 Lawrence, Kansas, is captured and sacked by pro-slavery forces
  • 1856-05-24 Pottawatomie Massacre took place in Kansas
  • 1860-07-09 Temperature hits 115°F in Ft Scott & 112°F in Topeka Kansas
  • 1860-07-19 1st railroad reaches Kansas
  • 1861-01-29 US state of Kansas admitted to the Union as the 34th state
  • 1861-07-01 US War Dept decrees that Kansas and Tennessee are to be canvassed for volunteers
  • 1863-10-06 Battle at Baxter Springs, Kansas
  • 1864-10-25 Battle of Marais Des Cygnes River, Kansas (Mine Creek)

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1874-12-08 Jesse James gang takes train at Muncie Kansas

Outlaw Jesse James
Jesse James
  • 1877-09-05 Southern blacks led by Pap Singleton settle in Kansas
  • 1879-05-30 An F4 tornado strikes Irving, Kansas, killing 18 and injuring 60.
  • 1881-02-19 Kansas becomes 1st state to prohibit all alcoholic beverages
  • 1881-04-16 In Dodge City, Kansas, Bat Masterson fights his last gun battle.
  • 1889-03-02 Kansas passes 1st US antitrust
  • 1889-03-09 Kansas passes 1st general antitrust law in US
  • 1891-03-10 Almon Strowger, an undertaker in Topeka, Kansas, patents the strowger switch, a device which led to the automation of telephone circuit switching.
  • 1892-10-05 Dalton Gang ends in shoot-out in Coffeville, Kansas bank holdup
  • 1897-06-24 Hail injures 26 in Topeka, Kansas
  • 1905-02-13 -40°F (-40°C) Lebanon, Kansas (state record)
  • 1906-02-01 1st federal penitentiary building completed, Leavenworth, Kansas
  • 1907-01-23 Charles Curtis of Kansas becomes 1st Native American US senator
  • 1907-01-29 Charles Curtis becomes U.S. Senator from Kansas, first Native American to become a Senator

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1910-08-31 Theodore Roosevelt makes a speech in Kansas advocating a 'square deal': property shall be 'the servant and not the master of the commonwealth'

26th US President Theodore Roosevelt
26th US President
Theodore Roosevelt
  • 1912-11-05 Arizona, Kansas & Wisconsin vote for female suffrage
  • 1913-03-13 Kansas legislature approved censorship of motion pictures
  • 1916-05-20 Codell, Kansas hit by tornado (also on same date in 1917 & 1918)
  • 1918-03-11 First confirmed cases of the Spanish Flu in the US are reported at Fort Riley, Kansas.
  • 1929-03-04 Charles Curtis (R-Kansas) becomes 1st native American VP
  • 1930-04-28 1st night organized baseball game played in Independence Kansas
  • 1936-07-24 121°F (49°C), near Alton, Kansas (state record)
  • 1936-10-02 1st alcohol power plant forms, Atchison, Kansas
  • 1941-05-31 -June 1) 32.0 cm rain falls on Burlington Kansas (state record)
  • 1941-06-01 12.59" (31.98 cm) rainfall, in Burlington, Kansas (state 24-hr record)
  • 1949-06-09 Mrs Georgia Neese Clark of Kansas becomes 1st woman treasurer of US
  • 1951-06-23 Most expensive US hailstorm ($1.5M crop damage & $14M property-Kansas)
  • 1951-08-11 100,000 acres flooded from Mississippi River in Kansas, Oklahoma, Missouri and Illinois
  • 1955-05-25 Series of 19 twisters destroy Udall Kansas & most of Blackwell Okla

MurderMurder of Interest

1959-11-15 Richard "Dick" Hickock and Perry Smith murder four members of the Clutter Family at their farm outside Holcomb, Kansas (subject of Truman Capote book In Cold Blood).

  • 1964-09-17 Beatles are paid a then record $150,000 for a concert (Kansas)
  • 1966-06-08 Topeka, Kansas is devastated by a tornado that registers as an "F5" on the Fujita Scale: the first to exceed US$100 million in damages. Sixteen people are killed, hundreds more injured, and thousands of homes damaged or destroyed.
  • 1967-09-09 Debra Dene Barnes (Kansas), 20, crowned 40th Miss America 1968
  • 1978-06-28 UNICEF chooses rock group Kansas as ambassadors of goodwill
  • 1990-03-03 Carole Gist (20) is the 1st African American to be crowned Miss USA in Wichita, Kansas
  • 1991-02-22 Kelli McCarty, 21, (Kansas), crowned 40th Miss USA
  • 1991-04-26 23 killed in Kansas & Oklahoma by tornadoes
  • 1993-07-02 Kansas Royals rename stadium Ewing Kaufman Stadium after founder
  • 1995-08-15 Keylee Sue Sanders, 18, of Kansas, crowned 13th Miss Teen USA
  • 1996-09-14 Tara Dawn Holland (Kansas), 23, crowned 70th Miss America 1997
  • 1998-12-05 3rd Big 12 Championship Game: #10 Texas A&M beats #2 Kansas State, 36-33 (2 OT)
  • 2000-11-07 The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration discovers one of the country's largest LSD labs inside a converted military missile silo in Wamego, Kansas.
  • 2000-12-02 5th Big 12 Championship Game: #1 Oklahoma beats #8 Kansas State, 27-24
  • 2003-12-06 8th Big 12 Championship Game: #13 Kansas State beats #1 Oklahoma, 35-7
  • 2005-08-18 Dennis Rader is sentenced to 175 years in prison for the BTK (Bind, Torture, Kill) serial killings in Sedgwick County, Kansas.
  • 2007-05-04 Greensburg, Kansas is almost completely destroyed by a 1.7m wide EF-5 tornado.

Famous Birthdays

  • 1814-06-22 James Henry Lane, US General during Civil War (Union) and Senator (Kansas), born in Lawrenceburg, Indiana (d. 1866)
  • 1875-04-02 Walter Chrysler, Wamego, Kansas, founder of car company Chrysler
  • 1880-03-12 House Peters, England, silent film actor (Kansas Territory)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1880-10-04 Damon Runyon, journalist and writer (Guys & Dolls-based on his work), born in Manhattan, Kansas (d. 1946)

Journalist and Author Damon Runyon
Journalist and Author
Damon Runyon

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1887-11-06 Walter Johnson, American MLB pitcher (Washington Senator: 1907-27), born in Humboldt, Kansas (d. 1946)

MLB Pitcher Walter Johnson
MLB Pitcher
Walter Johnson

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1895-06-10 Hattie McDaniel, 1st African American actress to win an Oscar (Mammy-Gone With The Wind), born in Wichita, Kansas (d. 1952)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1897-07-24 Amelia Earhart, American aviator and 1st woman to fly solo across the Atlantic, born in Atchison, Kansas (d. 1939)

Aviation Pioneer Amelia Earhart
Aviation Pioneer
Amelia Earhart
  • 1897-11-14 John Steuart Curry, US painter/lithographer (Baptism in Kansas)
  • 1898-01-03 ZaSu Pitts, Parsons Kansas, actress (Life With Father, Dames)
  • 1901-02-22 Charles E Whittaker, Kansas, US Supreme Court justice (1957-62)
  • 1909-07-26 Vivian Vance, Cherryvale Kansas, American actress (Ethel Mertz-I Love Lucy) (d. 1979)
  • 1915-12-05 Carl Donnell "Kansas" Fields, drummer
  • 1919-11-21 Steve Brodie, El Dorado Kansas, actor (Life & Legend of Wyatt Earp)
  • 1923-07-22 Robert J Dole, (Sen-R Kansas, 1969-95)/presidential candidate (R-1996)
  • 1928-07-20 Jan Meyers, (Rep-R-Kansas, 1985- )
  • 1928-12-20 Jack Christiansen, Kansas, NFL hall of famer defensive back (Lions)
  • 1929-11-15 Edward Asner, KC Kansas, actor (The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Lou Grant)
  • 1932-03-02 Frank E. Petersen Jr, American soldier and 1st African American Marine aviator & General, born in Topeka Kansas (d. 2015)
  • 1932-03-25 Wes Santee, American runner, born in Ashland, Kansasmiler (d. 2010)
  • 1932-07-29 Nancy Landon Kassebaum, (Sen-R-Kansas, 1979- )
  • 1935-04-13 Lyle Waggoner, KC Kansas, actor (Carol Burnette Show, Wonder Woman)
  • 1935-11-01 Charles Koch, American businesman and philanthropist (Koch Industries), - 6th= richest person in the world (2015), born in Wichita, Kansas
  • 1936-04-20 Pat Roberts, Topeka, Kansas, US Senator (Rep-R-KS, 1981-1997)
  • 1936-07-05 Shirley Knight, Goessei Kansas, actress (Endless Love, Secrets)
  • 1939-05-18 Gary S. Paxton, Musician and songwriter (Monster Mash), born in Coffeyville, Kansas (d. 2016)
  • 1940-05-03 David Koch, American businesman and philanthropist (Koch Industries), - 6th= richest person in the world (2015), born in Wichita, Kansas
  • 1942-03-28 Samuel Ramey, Colby Kansas, American operatic bass (La Scala)
  • 1942-07-08 Janice Pennington, Kansas, playmate (May 1971)/model (Price is Right)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1943-05-30 Gale Sayers, NFL running back (Chicago Bears), born in Wichita, Kansas

NFL Running Back Gale Sayers
NFL Running Back
Gale Sayers
  • 1948-08-04 James C Slattery, (Rep-D-Kansas, 1983- )
  • 1949-09-18 Kerry Livgren, Kansas, rock guitarist (Kansas)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1949-10-05 Bill James [George William James], American baseball writer and statistician ( sabermetrics), born in Holton, Kansas

Baseball Writer and Statistician Bill James
Baseball Writer and Statistician
Bill James
  • 1949-10-07 Dave Hope, rock bassist (Kansas)
  • 1949-11-07 Steven Stucky, American composer (Los Angeles Philharmonic), born in Hutchinson, Kansas (d. 2016)
  • 1950-02-04 Philip Ehart, rock drummer (Kansas)
  • 1951-06-15 Steve Walsh, American singer (Kansas)
  • 1955-10-30 Shanna Reed, KC Kansas, actress (Major Dad, Mirrors)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1958-05-29 Annette Bening, American actress (Grifters, Bugsy, American Beauty), born in Topeka, Kansas

  • 1959-07-19 Terri Treas, KC Kansas, actress (Hannah-7 Brides for 7 Brothers)
  • 1960-02-19 Vicki Lynn Lasseter Iola Kansas, playmate (Feb, 1981)
  • 1964-02-18 Matt Dillon, New Rochelle NY, actor (Flamingo Kid, Tex, Kansas)
  • 1964-04-16 Robert Kelker-Kelly, Wichita Kansas, (Bo-Days of our Live)
  • 1966-09-12 Darren E Burrows, Kansas, actor (Ed Chigliak-Northern Exposure)
  • 1967-11-01 Steve Fritz, Salina Kansas, decathlete
  • 1967-11-08 Kim Dugger, Wichita Kansas, Miss Kansas-America (1991)
  • 1968-03-26 Edward Kaminski, KC Kansas, javelin thrower
  • 1970-10-12 Amy Beth Keller, Great Bend Kansas, Miss America (Kansas-Top 10-1996)
  • 1971-10-16 Kathryn J Taylor, Miss USA-Kansas (1997)
  • 1972-04-14 Dean Potter, American free climber and BASE jumper, born in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas (d. 2015)
  • 1972-10-02 Tara Dawn Holland, Overland Park Kansas, Miss America (1997)
  • 1974-07-23 Maurice Greene, KC Kansas, 100m runner
  • 1975-07-13 Danni Boatwright, Tonganoxie, Kansas, American model/beauty queen (Miss Teen USA 1992 2nd runner-up)
  • 1978-01-25 Mandy Carraway, Miss Kansas Teen USA (1996)
  • 1979-03-22 Mariah Leanne Bergmann, Miss Kansas Teen USA (1997)

Famous Weddings

HeartWedding of Interest

1855-11-14 Confederate General J.E.B. Stuart (22) weds Flora Cooke in Fort Riley, Kansas

Confederate General J.E.B. Stuart
Confederate General
J.E.B. Stuart

HeartWedding of Interest

1982-07-24 Physicist and astronaut Sally Ride (31) weds astronaut Steven Hawley (30) in Salina, Kansas

1st American Woman in Space Sally Ride
1st American Woman in Space
Sally Ride
  • 1996-12-07 Former Tennessee Republican Senator Howard Baker (71) weds retired Kansas GOP Senator Nancy Kassebaum (64) in Washington, D.C.

Famous Deaths

  • 1866-07-11 James Henry Lane, US General during Civil War (Union) and Senator (Kansas), commits suicide at 52
  • 1946-10-29 John S Curry, US painter (Baptism in Kansas), dies
  • 1967-12-07 House Peters, silent film actor (Kansas Territory), dies at 87
  • 1987-10-12 Alfred M Landon, former Kansas Gov, dies at his Topeka home at 100