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All about Kansas

Historical Note:

Ladies first . . .

Back in a time when women were tied to "hearth and home" a few Kansas women were first to cut a different path:

  • The first woman mayor. In 1887, Mrs. Medora Salter become the first woman mayor in the world, a full 33 years before women even got the right to vote in America.
  • "The scourge of barrooms and bootleggers." In the 1890's Carry Amelia Nation, American anti-alcohol advocate, used a hatchet to make her point. Dressed in black and white she entered barrooms singing and swinging. Alone, or with other women, she would go into bars singing hymns while smashing her hatchet against bar taps and supplies.
  • Patrick Henry in Petticoats." Also in the 1890s, Mary Elizabeth ("Mary Yellin") Lease was called "the Kansas Pythoness" because of her biting attacks on the ruthless capitalists of the day. Her speeches were known to be so eloquent some called her "Patrick Henry in Petticoats." She was relentless in her whipping up the crowd against moneyed aristocracy and a government, "of Wall Street, by Wall Street and for Wall Street." In one year alone (1890) she made almost 200 speeches.
  • "Lady Lindy." That's what they called her. In 1932 the Kansas-born aviatrix, Amelia Earhart was the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic -- only five years after Charles Lindbergh. It took Lindbergh 33 -1/2 hours; it took Earhart 15 hours and 39 minutes.

Name Origin: Indian. ("Southwind People")

Capital: Topeka

Population: 2,554,000

Area: 82,277 square miles

Statehood: January 29, 1861 (34th)

Nickname: The Sunflower State

Motto: "To the stars through difficulties"

Famous For: "Home on the Range," Wild West, Dodge City, Buffalo, Agriculture, Aircraft Manufacturing, Sunflowers, Grain, Great Plains

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