KANSAS COLLECTION ARTICLES




Kansas Fact and Fancy:  Trivia questions about Kansas history


Part Two


The following have been archived from the Internet mailing list, Kansas-L.

21. Four towns on the Missouri Pacific Railroad in Kansas are said to have been named after members of a Chicago baseball club, in the order of their batting average. What are the names of these towns?

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22. In 1891 a reporter for the Salina Republican was discovered in the attic of a meeting hall, spying on the state convention of the Farmer's Alliance. Who was he, and what honorable position did he eventually attain? (Tie-breaker...who was with him in the attic, but was not discovered?)

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23. People from Southwestern Kansas may be familiar with the dream of a rich eastern businessman over a century ago. He had already made several million dollars manufacturing and selling patent medicine, and was looking for a new project. When he came to the Dodge City area, he discovered the new project he was hoping for. The project was begun, and he sold stocks in his company worth $1 million. These stocks were bonded, and sold in London at par. He made half a million dollars in this project before selling it to a trust company in New York in 1887. Though work continued for a number of years, it was never completed. In fact, the project suffered from several natural disasters, an early ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court (that was recently overturned in a much-publicized hearing) and from alack of understanding of soil mechanics. A piece of it was recently unearthed and is on display outside the museum at Ingalls. A newspaper article regarding the discovery of this piece cited its weight as 15 tons. The question: Name this folly and tell why it failed.

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24. This man was on the losing side in the war of 1812. He was first reviled then revered by his followers. His brother served as a brigidier general in the British army. Though the brother was killed in a pivotal battle of that war, this man lived until 1837. Many historians consider that he was an inept bumbler and was successful only through his brother's guidance. Among the facts that tend to support this theory is: In spite of his brother's explicit instructions not to engage the enemy, he suffered a humiliating defeat at the hands of American forces in November of 1811. Many years later, the site of this battle became part of a presidential campaign slogan. Who was this man and, most importantly, what was his link to Kansas?

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25. Kansas was a dangerous place back in the early days, and none more so than Douglas county, where bands of armed men were likely to ride out of the trees to attack, and often kill, unwary passers-by. Sometimes the attackers had robbery in mind, and sometimes they were simply doing what they considered to be the proper sort of thing.
     Back in the days before statehood, there were a number of such murders, but two in particular, one not too far from Baldwin and the other near Lawrence, were of unimagined, although somewhat indirect, consequences. The first and earlier eventually brought the United States, per capita, more wealth than any other single event in its history, while the second came to cost the nation, per capita, more wealth than any other event in its history.
     Who were the people who were murdered, and how did their deaths lead to events of such magnitude?

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26. An author lived in Pittsburg, Kansas between 1901 and 1903. He was the author of a regionally well-known story that was later made into a movie by the same name starring John Wayne. He is reported to have been the first American writer to earn one million dollars in profits from his writing. Who is the author, and what is the well-known story?

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27. A native of Garnett who moved to Chicago, this turn-of-the-century poet's work can be found in most anthologies of American literature. Name this poet.

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28. On October 26, 1992, Congress passed Public Law 102-525, establishing a National Historic Site in Kansas to commemorate a landmark Supreme Court decision. What was the court case? (Either the name or the decision is okay.) Where is the National Historic Site? (The city and the building.)

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29. This Kansan was Commander of the pilot ship during the flight of Apollo 17 to the moon. (1) Who was he? (2) What high school did he graduate from? (3) What college did he graduate from?

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30. WHO AM I?
     I was born in Cherryvale, KS in 1907 and died in Connecticut in 1979. I was a successful Broadway stage performer before I became a beloved and well-known television personality in the 1950's. What was my birth name? What was my stage name?

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31. When Dr. James Naismith was hired by the University of Kansas in 1898, he was hired to fill two positions. What were they?

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32. Erected in about 1856 and destroyed by fire in 1883, it was where Horace Greeley organized the Republican Party in Kansas on May 18, 1859. What was the name of the structure, what town was it in and what occupied the grounds in 1954, at the time of the Kansas [Territorial] Centennial?

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33. One of the largest towns in the region of Kansas was once burned to the ground to prevent the spread of disease and then burned again, several years later, because "'evil spirits' dwelt there." What was the name of the town?

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34. What city was founded by the "Vegetarian Kansas Emigration Company" in 1856?

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35. What part of Kansas was once sold to the Conferate states? Who sold it? What were the terms of the sale?

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36. L. Frank Baum's children's novel The Wizard of Oz has become almost synonymous with Kansas, helped in large part by the beloved movie that was based on the book. Not a few Kansans can get misty-eyed hearing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow"! While the movie followed the story in the book closely, there were some significant differences, and my question deals with one of them. In the movie, Dorothy was safely returned home to Kansas, but we never found out what happened to her companions. My question: whatever happened to the Cowardly Lion?

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37. On October 5, 1871, an Abilene Law Enforcement Officer shot and killed two men. Who was the lawman, who were the victims, and why was the death of the second man considered so peculiar?

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38. There are four things I remember with great fondness and miss terribly from my youth on a Miami Co., KS farm. I wouldn't return to that hard life for anything but if I were wealthy I'd arrange to experience these four things regularly. Our family left that farm (and farm life) in 1959 therefore I can't "go home" for these treats.

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39. What is the meaning of the phrase "out of Missouri by Jennison"?

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40. Who was the first baby born in Barber County? What year? Who were the parents?

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Hints

Trivia Question #28: The decision came down the same year that Nancy Landon Kassebaum got her BA from KU.

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Trivia Question #30: This actress played one of the neighbors on a long running television series (it's still in syndication).

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Trivia Question #33: This town isn't on any current map. Actually, it hasn't been on a map for a very long time. The disease was cholera. The town name can be found in Cutler's History. While it was well before the Civil War, the town name sounds distinctly political. It was located along an important trail.

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Trivia Question #38: Two are visual and two are smells.

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