This Week in Kansas City History

Exodusters Mark the Spot

"Negro Exodusters en route to Kansas, fleeing from the yellow fever, " Photomural from engraving. Harpers Weekly, 1870. Historic American Building Survey Field Records, HABS FN-6, #KS -49-11 Prints and Photographs Division (106)

April 25, 1879: The Wyandotte Commercial Gazette reports that more than 1,000 destitute people have arrived in Wyandotte City, most of them freed slaves drawn by Kansas' reputation as a free state.

To Promote the General Welfare

William Volker

April 14, 1910: The City Council passes an ordinance drafted by the shy philanthropist, William Volker, which creates the nation’s first Board of Public Welfare.

And Then It Happened

Swope Park Swimming Pool

April 9, 1968: With tensions high after the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., riots break out in Kansas City, leaving seven people dead and nearly 100 buildings damaged.

Death Takes a Holiday (Maybe)

Postcard of Woodward Hall at Park College

March 27, 1836: George S. Park, who will go on to found Parkville, Missouri, and what has become Park University, purportedly survives a Mexican firing squad during the fight for Texan independence by pretending to be dead.

Katz in the Cradle

Isaac Katz

March 8, 1879: Isaac Katz, who, along with his brother Mike, will found the Katz Drug Co. in Kansas City, is born in western Ukraine.

Kansas City Public Library Beta