National Archives at Kansas City

Press Release: April 6, 2012

National Archives at Kansas City

National Archives to Host James Spawn for Crime in the 1930s Speaker Series

For More Information Contact:
Kimberlee Ried, 816-268-8072

Kansas City, (MO)…The National Archives at Kansas City will host James Spawn on Wednesday, April 18, at 6:30 p.m. for a lecture titled Running with Bonnie and Clyde: The Red Crown Affair. A 6:00 p.m. reception will precede the event. Attendees are encouraged to view the "They’re Not Going to Get Me:" Crime in the 1930s exhibition prior to the lecture.

Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow, along with Buck and Blanche Barrow and young W. D. Jones were surrounded by a coalition of 13 local lawmen, yet the criminals found a way to escape. One lawman said "it sounded like 10 Fourths of July" when the bullets flew. This was the scene at the Red Crown Tavern and Tourist Camp on July 20, 1933, located near present day Kansas City International Airport at Cookingham Road and U.S. Interstate 29. Spawn will include documents and photographs that explain who participated and what really happened in Platte County in 1933.

For more information or to make a reservation for this free event call 816-268-8010 or email

About the speaker
James Spawn
attended Brown Institute of Radio Broadcasting and Electronics in Minneapolis and after serving in the United States Air Force enjoyed a career in broadcasting. Later he became involved in association management, which included publication of magazines. Today, he is the editor of The Restorer magazine, official publication of the Model-A Ford Club of America. He is a multi-award winner for writing, design and art preparation. He has won numerous awards from the International Automotive Media Awards, the Livestock Publications Council and many others. He is a member of the Society of Automotive Historians. Spawn was awarded the Governor's Spotlight Award in 2008 from the Missouri Department of Tourism for his work in developing his Bonnie and Clyde lecture and events in conjunction with Midwest antique car enthusiasts. He also was awarded the 2010 Betty Soper Award for the Platte County Historical Society for his direction of erecting and dedicating the Red Crown Historical Marker that marks the site of the shootout with infamous Bonnie and Clyde.

The National Archives at Kansas City is one of 15 facilities nationwide where the public has access to Federal archival records. It is home to historical records dating from the 1820s to the 1990s created or received by Federal agencies in Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, and South Dakota. For more information, call 816-268-8000, email or visit

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LPM/LE-KC 12-19

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