The Center has a long tradition of promoting original research on the American Midwest, a region that often has been overlooked by scholars. We encourage an exploration of the diverse people whose stories make up the history of this compelling region and promote the dissemination of this scholarship through print, digital media, exhibits, and public programming. Partnering with regional museums, libraries, historical societies, and universities, the Center’s projects encourage a greater awareness of the region’s history and culture.
Notable Projects Associated with the Center
- Bleeding Kansas, Bleeding Missouri: The Long Civil War on the Border
- On Slavery’s Borders: Missouri’s Small-Slaveholding Households
- Cowtown Cool: A Cultural Atlas of Kansas City
- Heartland Green: An Environmental History of Kansas City
- Wide Open Town: Kansas City Between the Wars, 1918-1941
Border Wars Project
The Center co-sponsored the successful Border Wars Project with the Kansas City Public Library, the Hall Center for the Humanities at the University of Kansas, and Freedom’s Frontier National Heritage Area. Fifteen scholars, who actively research and write about the Civil War in the Kansas/Missouri border region, shared and received feedback on their scholarship at a workshop held at the Hall Center. Historical themes and points of connection emerged from these conversations. The scholars met again to present their revised papers at a well-attended public conference that was held at the Kansas City Public Library. The University Press of Kansas published the resulting articles in an award-winning volume, Bleeding Kansas, Bleeding Missouri: The Long Civil War on the Western Border. Many of the Border Wars scholars worked with the Kansas City Public Library on its Civil War on the Western Border website, which has earned recognition and awards since its launch in 2013. The Center is once again partnering with the Kansas City Public Library on the Wide Open Town project.