The Magazine for Kansas City’s Ice Age

(Originally published 4/16/20) “Every product – every industry – every modern industrial development – has its “story.” The pages may not have been turned back so that he who runs may read and be interested, but the story is there. Perhaps some of our greatest untold romances concern those taken-for-granted commodities which the public sees,Continue reading “The Magazine for Kansas City’s Ice Age”

Napoleon Dible’s Magnificent Homes

(originally published 2/27/20) While J.C. Nichols’ name is apparent all over town even seventy years after his death, the name of Napoleon Dible is generally only known in parts of town, particularly the Waldo area. Both men put their own stamp on the housing character of Kansas City during the first half of the 20thContinue reading “Napoleon Dible’s Magnificent Homes”

A Wrong Made Right: In Honor of Yvonne Wilson

(originally published 10/17/19) Tuesday, October 15, 2019 – This morning, I woke to the radio telling me Yvonne Wilson had passed away. Wilson was a long-time local community leader who served in the Missouri State House for ten years, and during that tenure surely everyone living in Kansas City central has benefited from her hardContinue reading “A Wrong Made Right: In Honor of Yvonne Wilson”

Building Nature: Foot Paths, Bridle Trails, and Picnic Fires in the Country Club District

(originally published 7/25/19) Two posts ago, I wrote about the public art – statues, fountains, reflecting pools, etc. – that J.C. Nichols incorporated into the Country Club District’s residential and commercial development sites. Public art was one of the “community features” he thought important for the District to achieve the status of development he envisioned.Continue reading “Building Nature: Foot Paths, Bridle Trails, and Picnic Fires in the Country Club District”

“An Outdoor Museum” – Public Art in the Country Club District

(originally published in 2015 in The Country Club District of Kansas City, and on 7/11/19 in KCBackstories.) Growing up in Lawrence, the drive into Kansas City was a regular event. The first thing I understood about where Kansas City was – as in “are we there yet?” – was that I was there when IContinue reading ““An Outdoor Museum” – Public Art in the Country Club District”

Un-Welcome to the Neighborhood: Brookside’s “Blue Goose”

(originally published in 2017 in the book, One Hundred Years’ Journey: The Greenway Fields Neighborhood,” and in KC Backstories 6/13/19) This version is adapted from the KCB post) I may be one of the few people in midtown that doesn’t have a strong opinion about the “Blue Goose.” To me, it’s just a part ofContinue reading “Un-Welcome to the Neighborhood: Brookside’s “Blue Goose””

Faith and Trust Part I: The Case of the Missing Houses

(originally published 4/25/19) This week’s post is the first of two parts, but was originally a feature in my 2017 book on the history of the Greenway Fields neighborhood – the neighborhood just west of Wornall Road between 61st and 65th Streets. The piece looks at the often-times complicated relationships neighborhoods have with their institutionalContinue reading “Faith and Trust Part I: The Case of the Missing Houses”

Corrigan House – A Kansas City Gem

(originally published 2/7/19) Kansas City is home to a number of beautiful homes. And by beautiful, I mean jaw-droppingly stunning. Out-of-town visitors are without exception surprised to find the large number of massive, imposing and architecturally breathtaking houses in town, many of which are, of course, in the oldest parts of the Country Club DistrictContinue reading “Corrigan House – A Kansas City Gem”