Central Library

Ebb and Flow #2

In Berman’s mind, information and knowledge flow like an unseen current between people and media in the library environment. This print is one of ten that visualizes this phenomenon in the ebb and flow of color across them. While the series has a cohesive visual effect when displayed together, each individual unit has its own unique characteristics. In the second of the series, streams of oranges and greens intersect and produce browns. Within each frame, the layering of color creates new shapes and hues that add to the overall flow of the work.

First National Bank Bronze Doors

These doors once defined the entry of the First National Bank building built in 1906 on 10th and Baltimore streets and what is now home to the Central Branch of the Kansas City Public Library. Local architects Wilder and Wright designed the building in a neo-classical style with heavy stone masonry and frontal colonnade that complemented the ornate bronze doors. At just over seven feet in height, the doors disguise their weight with intricate design and open space that allow one to essentially see through their structure.

Portrait of Jack Clifford

Jack Clifford, born Virgil James Montani, was originally from Geneo, Italy. Clifford’s vaudeville fame came from his live performances, both as an actor and dancer. Clifford was noted for his marriage to Evelyn Nesbit in 1916, and after a fifteen year separation ended in divorce in 1933. Clifford died on November 10, 1956, at the age of 76, in New York. In this portrait Clifford is captured in a relaxed atmosphere, seated with an opened newspaper on his lap. Clifford is attired in casual clothing, a white shirt, a black ribbon bow tie, suit vest and pinstripe pants.

Portrait of Orval Hixon in Light Suit (Self-Portrait)

Orval Hixon was a Kansas City photographer whose artistic abilities out rivaled those of his contemporaries. Hixon was a master of his craft, summoning all his skill set to produce works capturing his subjects in profound poses. Hixon from an early onset pursued an interest in the arts. After learning he was color blind as a child, he followed a path into photography with his first camera purchased in 1898. In 1905 he paid a local photographer five dollars to work as an assistant for one month.

"The Delinquents"

"The Delinquents", a 1957 American dramatic cinematic film was written and produced by Robert Altman. The plot of this film follows two romantically involved teens, Scotty White and Janice Wilson through Kansas City amidst an era of hot rod gangs and youthful delinquency in the 1950's. The poster is noted for its high utilization of color saturation. Vibrant red is laid out in a triangular shape on the upper left corner of the poster. The lower right corner contains a concentrated yellow and each area is bordered by a solid blue.

1837 Map of Western and Northern Frontier

As stated on the upper left hand corner of the map, this map illustrates "the plan of the defences of the Western and North-Western Frontier, as proposed by Charles Gratiot, in his report of Oct. 31, 1837." The Frontier is at the western edge of the central Midwestern states: Iowa, Missouri, Arkansas, and Louisiana. The Frontier is further defined by the regions inhabited by various Native American tribes who encountered the US military.

1900 Cover of Puck Magazine

In this August 1900 cover for Puck Magazine, a man blown up to the size and shape of a hot air balloon floats along with "Kansas City" and "Convention" ribbons framing his head. The man is Richard Croker, the then-president of New York City's Tammany Hall, a Democratic political organization. Just as the tip of Croker's toes are about to leave the ground, David B. Hill, a state Senator of the same party, runs after him holding a spear with a trailing ribbon that reads "NY State Democracy".

1907 Aerial Map of Kansas City

George Lawrence was a commercial photographer that invented the "captive airship" a panoramic camera suspended in air by seventeen Conyne kites that enabled him to take stunning aerial panoramic photographs. Lawrence took pictures of cities across the United States and captured this one of Kansas City in 1907 from one thousand feet above Summit and 13th streets. Beneath the photograph Summit, Jefferson, 13th, and 14th streets are indicated along with a stamp that reads "Reproduced Especially for James M. Kemper".

1929 Aero Digest Advertisement

This image is from a page of the April 1929 issue of Aero Digest- a professional periodical covering the aircraft industry. The article focuses on the economy of the growing air transportation industry and Kansas City's potential to be the next "air metropolis". The article shows via a graphic representation that Kansas City's central location within the country gives it an advantage in the industry by being the "hub of vast areas". The image shows small planes radiating out from Kansas City to others all over the country.

1940 Liberty Magazine Cover

This reproduction of the September 7th, 1940 Liberty Magazine cover was an ode to Kansas City's booming economy. The Liberty Magazine was a general interest magazine published between 1924 to the end of 1950 and covered stories about politicians, celebrities, authors, and artists. The content provided insight into popular culture and politics. As the poster notes, major changes in Kansas City were afoot with a political "clean-up". In the background of the poster is the old Municipal Stadium located at Brooklyn Avenue and East 22nd Street where the minor league Kansas City Blues played.

1946 City Plan Commission Map of Business and Industry

This is the second proposed master plan for business and industry areas in Kansas City generated in 1946. The gridded map indicates business in red and industry in gray areas on the map that correspond to a key in the lower right-hand corner.

1946 City Plan Commission Map of Downtown Area

This map lays out the ninth Proposed Master Plan of the Downtown Area and was generated in 1946. The plan's primary feature is the expressway loop surrounding the gridded area. Existing and proposed parking arrangements, public spaces, street improvements, freeways, and tunnels are indicated in the legend with corresponding color and pattern on the map.

1946 City Plan Commission Map of Future Land Use and Population Density

This is the eighth proposed master plan for future land use and population density in Kansas City generated in 1946. The gridded map indicates single and two family housing as well as low and high apartments, retail business, light and heavy industry areas, and public and semi-public areas. Each element is color or pattern coordinated and corresponds to a legend in the lower right-hand corner of the map.

1946 City Plan Commission Map of Public Schools

This is the fifth proposed master plan for public schools in Kansas City generated in 1946. The gridded map indicates elementary, junior high, and high schools on the map by circles sized small, medium, and large respectively. The map differentiates the location of existing schools in green as well the "proposed" in red and "to be abandoned" in yellow, as illustrated by the legend in the lower right-hand corner. The legend does not mention neighborhood districts but each is delineated and named on the map itself.

1946 City Plan Commission Map of Residential Areas

This is the first proposed master plan for residential areas in Kansas City generated in 1946. The gridded map indicates needed redevelopment, rehabilitation, conservation, and protection along with proposed neighborhood and community boundaries. Each element is color or pattern coordinated and corresponds to a legend in the lower right-hand corner of the map.

19th Century Half-Moon Table

This side table's smooth upper surface caps a wealth of intricacy below. Starting with the band that foots the tabletop, shields, vases plush with foliage, and scrolling elements carved in high relief span the half-moon shape and give way to two supporting legs. The legs' alternate smooth, slender segments with globes carved with more high-relief detail. A sequence of ram faces protrudes from each of the upper globes with ribbons threading their horns. The lower globes are more subtle with sequences of four-leaf floral cameos.

19th century Pedestal Table

This 19th century pedestal table is a beautiful combination of dark stained wood and glass and is accompanied by four chairs. The pedestal refers to the one "leg" in the center which holds the glass tabletop. The pedestal is comprised of a simple geometric base with a squarish form. As the eye moves up toward the center of the pedestal, one is greeted by an intricate carving of four lion heads enmeshed within a field of leaves. The top of the base is a small circular design echoed within the larger circular design of the glass tabletop.

8th Street

This painting purportedly looks down 8th Street in Kansas City. Buildings are colorful yet rendered in muted tones contrasting darkly coated pedestrians at their bases. Cars trail off in the distance and merge with the painting's Impressionistic style into an overcast sky. This work is noted as being painted for the W.P.A. (Works Progress Administration). The W.P.A.

A Bird's Eye View of Wyandotte (Small)

This map features a growing section of Wyandotte County in Kansas in 1869. Above the crux of the Kaw and Missouri Rivers lies the beginnings of a grid development across the land beyond. Amongst the dwellings, significant buildings are numbered and referred to in the ornate legend at the bottom of the map. Listed from 1-10 are the Court House, Public School, Dunnings Hall, Asylum for the Blind, U.R.R. W. Depot, Cemetary, and then the Congregational, Catholic, Episcopal, German and South Methodist, and North Methodist Episcopal churches.

A Favourite Hostel

George Wright was a British painter of coaching and hunting scenes. He was the elder brother of Gilbert Scott Wright. Mainly a self-taught artist, he worked with his younger brother until 1925 and during that time their combined work was frequently reproduced on calendars. Wright lived for some time in Rugby and Oxford before moving to Richmond in Surrey in 1929 and later he chose to retire to Seaford in Sussex, where he remained until his death in 1942.

Pages