Art, blog, History, Kansas City

Kansas City vs. Leavenworth

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A strong rivalry existed between Kansas City and Leavenworth before the Civil War. Leavenworth, Kansas is situated some twenty-five miles up the river from Kansas City. Both cities had begun railroads to Cameron, Missouri before the war. After the civil war both railroad companies sought financial backing to revive them. The railroad to Cameron secured Kansas City’s future.

The city of Leavenworth evolved from Fort Leavenworth and enjoyed a large and prosperous trade during the war. Both Kansas City and Leavenworth undertook to secure aid and connect with the Hannibal and the St. Joseph Railroad. As a consequence each city had to show claims and merits to determine which road would be funded, Kansas City won with C.E. Kearney organizing the venture. The final decision to build the road to Kansas City was made by James Joy of the Chicago, Burlington Railroads. He visited Leavenworth and Kansas City and decided that Kansas City had the best point to also build a bridge and make the road of value.

Cameron, Missouri is the home of the Cameron Dragons. Go Dragons! There is a Train Depot Museum in Cameron that is worth visiting.

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Little Women, my house the trading post

My review…

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On Christmas morning the girls have a bottle of cologne for mommy. Hanna the maid has popovers and sausages for the girls to eat. Mommy comes into the scene with news of a woman with a new-born and six kids huddled in one room for heat. “They have nothing.”

The girls take their lovely breakfast to the family down the road. And when the wealthy old man next door learned of this unselfish act, the neighbor boy’s Grandfather sends over a great feast for the girls and a piano.

The Welfare system in America is very young. In the days before State and Federal programs the poor had little hope. Many small shacks lined the landscape of Kansas City during 1868. These tiny houses were often made of orange crates, wooden shipping crates.

It is said that the wealth trickles down to cover the poor. In modern times I question if the wealthy are providing for the poor. Down the road from me lives a family with cracked windows. The door loose off the hinges. A wide blanket over the doorway and electric heaters on high. The mother and her child huddle in a single room trying to keep warm.

In the kitchen, little if any, food to eat. Especially when the snow falls four inches deep. I pray for the little ones we cannot see and they don’t know any one cares.

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Art, blog, History, Kansas City, Story, Uncategorized

1868, my house the trading post

Fashion in KC-Westlake

My favorite story, Little Women, is a novel by Louisa May Alcott. She lived between 1832 and 1888. In 1868 she published her book. The black and white movie version, made in 1949, was on T.V. the other night.

Inside the 1860s general store, preserves, sewing material, and winter coats are for sale. The matriarch of the family, working at the store, comforts an elderly customer. The audience is introduced to her four daughters. Jo, Beth, Margarete, and Megan. The girls are getting ready for Christmas.

Jo reads to an elder woman, Aunt Marge. In the background a dog and a parrot. Their father is off at war. Jo shows her disobedience as she tries to slip away when her aunt dozes off to sleep. Suddenly, the Aunt grabs Jo’s arm, and as she scolds, gives Jo a few dollars to spend for x-mas gifts then criticizes her for not cleaning the dusty bannister.

Another sister, Megan stands with a naughty sign in a classroom as school lets out. Ashamed and crying for drawing sketches during her English lesson. The tears convince the school master to  dismiss the incident without telling her mother. As she leaves school she taunts  her peers.

Hanna the maid, sets the table as the school girls are arriving home. As the girls cross their yard, they notice the young man living next door in the old man’s grand house. Once in their own house Beth greets them. Jo shares the money Aunt Marge has given them. Each distants themselves as the discuss what they will buy. The sisters want to buy according to their talents and likes.

Jo is a tom boy and almost a lady. Jo aspires to be a famous author. Her sister, Amy is a girl. Jo directs a play in the family parlor. She instructs her sister Amy to swoon. The girls giggle.

Mother arrives home. “”Mommy!” They greet her with kisses. She reads a letter from Father. He tells them he is proud of them. Each girl is encouraged; they want dearly, to be better, to please father in his absent. Mother leaves to fix tea and dinner. The girls make plans to best use the money from Aunt Marge, to buy mommy a gift.

After dinner mother and girls fold cloths near the fire. Later, Beth, afraid of people, is a gifted musician, plays the piano as the others sing a hymn like song. Mother then sends them off to bed.

In the morning, it is Christmas. Hanna the maid has breakfast ready. The girls have put together their money and bought a large bottle of cologne for mommy. Popovers and sausage delight the girls. The war has caused them poverty and such food was indeed a treat. However, Hanna remembers a time when the family was wealthier and food plentiful. She apologizes for not having more.

 

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blog, History, Kansas City, Story

1864, my house the trading post

Hole-in-One

Just south of Kansas City, near the frontier town of Westport, thirty thousand men fought in the fields and hills along the Kansas border. On the rooftops the non-combatant families watched the clouds of smoke rising from the fields and listened in terror to the furious roar of cannons and the cracking of pistols.

The great battle of the Civil War started shortly before noon where the Country Club golf course is today. The troops charged upon the artillery of the Confederate guns. Among the men of Westport who enlisted for the Union army were a head master of the school, mayor of Kansas City, members of the School Board and several pupils.

Young eyes peered over the edge of the roof, safe in her mother’s arms. Families huddled on the roof. A fearful melee of plunging horses, the incessant ding of muskets, and shouting men increased in the man-to-man encounter. For hours cannons were firing at the rebels. The fighting carried on through the night.

The next morning, the road from the state line going south was littered with discarded gear left by the withdrawing forces. The fighting would continue for days throughout the hillside as troops continued to retreat south. Business continued in Westport with a wagon train and beef herd leaving the same morning which shielded some of the retreating Confederate troops traveling along state line.

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My house the trading post stood strong during the battle of Westport, serving as a sanctuary with a stadium view of the bloody events. One half of the roof is a peak, the other half is flat. In the summer I enjoy sunbathing on the roof and taking in the scenery. I can see for miles from the roof just as the residence during the 1864 Civil War battle in Westport.

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1855, my house the trading post

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Colonel A. G. Boone, a relative of Daniel Boone, was a great entertainer, and as was the custom of the times kept an open house where many visitors stayed weeks at a time. The Bernard brothers kept a general store in Old Westport (1855). The goods ranged from a variety of sewing supplies to hunting knives and articles which represented the domestic lifestyle of the women and the valor of the men of Old Westport.

Mr. Bernard and the Colonel were good friends. As a young man, he and the Colonel went on a social call in Westport. They started out on a Sunday afternoon strolling up the hill passing where the Preschool now stands.

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The men dressed in white linen suites were on their way to visit the charming Miss Munday. Both friends, infatuated with the lady, had their heads in the clouds when the Colonel missed his footing and fell into a tanning vat. His misfortune made it necessary he return home, while Mr. Bernard made the visit alone.

Tannery

Tannery

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Streets Covered In Snow

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I think the Kansas City Mayor follows my blog. Several weeks ago I wrote a blog story about the three snow trucks in a row. The snowplows were barely skimming the pavement. It appeared that the Kansas City snowplows were traveling too fast and the shovel wasn’t engaged low enough to move any snow off the street. I also twittered their technique didn’t look right and that the ‘Kansas’ side was clear.

This morning the snow laid on the ground, all the neighborhood covered in white. The Kansas City snow plow trucks are out and working. They just did my neighborhood. I didn’t expect the street to be clear’d so soon. In fact, I had cancelled my doctor appointment because of the snow.

In Westport Missouri, an icy snow is several inches thick on the roads, and unlike the last time the snowplows are doing a much better job. I love the snow. I don’t like the cold.

Snow-angel

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Twinkind, my house the trading post

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Imagine dollhouses or work scenes with dolls of actual family members and coworkers. Twinkind uses a state-of-the art 3D scanning and color printing technology. The result is stunningly detailed figurines that you can hold in your hands and observe from any angle. – See more at: http://www.twinkind.com/en/product#sthash.HnpYNyWv.dpuf

I found the site browsing. I am intrigued. However, a 1:12 scale, plastic doll costs about $450. This will detour me from purchasing one. The dolls are made on a 3D computer that melts plastic to the dimension and shape programmed. Very cool, in my opinion.

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http://dollhousesby.wordpress.com

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