National Archives at Kansas City

Location:

National Archives at Kansas City
400 West Pershing Road
Kansas City, MO 64108

Exhibits at the National Archives at Kansas City

National Archives at Kansas City Calendar of Events

All activities are free and open to the public unless noted.

Reservations are requested for all programs and workshops by calling 816-268-8010 or emailing kansascity.educate@nara.gov.

Tuesday, February 23 - 6:00 reception/6:30 p.m. program
Author discussion
Kansas City’s Historic Northeast Neighborhoods
by Northeast Kansas City Historical Society with Kent Dicus
Nestled in a pocket of Kansas City, an area just east of downtown Kansas City known as the Northeast, is home to six early neighborhoods that make up a vibrant and eclectic part of town that also includes the Kansas City Museum. All were established between the 1880s and the 1920s. This latest publication from the Northeast Kansas City Historical Society, features select properties from the six neighborhoods. The hardbound book contains many vintage and current photos, as well as brief histories of those properties throughout the Northeast and a bit beyond. Featured neighborhoods include Indian Mound, Lykins, Sheffield, Scarritt Renaissance, and Pendleton Heights. Program presented in partnership with the Northeast Kansas City Historical Society.

Tuesday, March 1 - 5:30 reception/6:00 p.m. film
Film screening and discussion

From Academy Award-nominated director Richard Robbins, Girl Rising journeys around the globe to witness the strength of the human spirit and the power of education to change the world. Viewers will watch the stories of nine girls living in developing countries who confront challenges and overcome impossible odds to pursue their educational dreams. Film running time is 1 hour and 40 minutes. A brief moderator question and answer discussion with the audience will follow the film. This program is sponsored by UNA Women, a committee of the United Nations Association of Greater Kansas City and the Lawrence D. Starr Global Studies Institute at the University of Saint Mary. Program partners include the Mu Omega Chapter of the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., SAFEHOME, and the Metropolitan Organization to Counter Sexual Assault (MOCSA).

Tuesday, March 15 – 6:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Election Day

The National Archives at Kansas City is a polling site.

Tuesday, April 5 – 6:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Election Day

The National Archives at Kansas City is a polling site.

Tuesday, April 19 – 6:00 p.m. reception/ 6:30 p.m. program
Author discussion
Harry and Arthur:  Truman, Vandenberg, and the Partnership That Created the Free World
by Lawrence J. Hass
Following the end of World War II, President Harry S. Truman and Senator Arthur Vandenberg, a Republican from Michigan, worked closely together to create a new U.S. foreign policy. Lawrence J. Haas, Senior Fellow for U. S. Foreign Policy at the American Foreign Policy Council, will discuss how Truman and Vandenberg built a tight partnership with one another to meet the emerging Soviet threat and to rebuild Europe. Working in strong bipartisan fashion at a bitterly partisan time, they crafted a dramatic new foreign policy through which the United States stepped boldly onto the world stage for the first time to protect its friends by containing Soviet expansionism, and to promote freedom and prosperity through such means as the United Nations and the Marshall Plan. These two men—unlikely partners by way of personality and style—transformed the United States from a reluctant global giant to a self-confident leader; from a nation that traditionally turned inward after war to one that remained engaged to shape the postwar landscape; and from a nation with no real military establishment to one that now spends more on defense than the next dozen nations combined. Presented in partnership with the Truman Center, Truman Library, and International Relations Council.

Thursday, April 21 - 6:00 reception/6:30 p.m. film
Film screening and discussion
20th Century Civil Rights and Liberties documentary film series with GKCBHSG
In Search of History:  The Night Tulsa Burned

Tulsa's Greenwood district is the site of one of the most devastating race disturbances in the history of the United States. Before May 31, 1921, Tulsa's black business district known as Greenwood flourished in spite of segregation. It boasted of several restaurants, theaters, clothing shops and hotels. Dubbed the "Black Wall Street," Greenwood was an economic powerhouse. After May 31, 1921, Greenwood would never be the same. The tension mounted between the black and white communities over an incident that allegedly occurred in an elevator at Drexel building in downtown Tulsa involving Sarah Page, a 17-year-old white elevator operator, and Dick Rowland, a 19-year-old black man. There are several versions of what supposedly transpired, but the most common being that Dick Rowland accidentally stepped on Page's foot in the elevator, throwing her off balance. When Rowland reached out to keep her from falling, she screamed. Many Tulsans came to believe through media reports that Rowland attacked Page although no sufficient evidence surfaced to substantiate the claim. The incident was further escalated by a local newspaper headline that encouraged the public to "Nab Negro for Attacking Girl in Elevator." The strained relationship between the white and black communities, the heightened jealousy of the success of the Black Wall Street area and the elevator encounter led to the Tulsa Race Riot. Armed white men looted, burned and destroyed the black community. When the smoke cleared, mere shells of buildings were all that remained of the business district. The Red Cross estimates that more than 300 people were killed and approximately 1,200 homes were destroyed. Program presented in partnership with the Greater Kansas City Black History Study Group.

Tuesday, May 3 - 6:00 p.m. reception/6:30 p.m. program
Author discussion
Bigger Bombs for a Brighter Tomorrow:  The Strategic Air Command and the America War Plans at the Dawn of the Atomic Age, 1945-1950
by Dr. John Curatola
After World War II, the United States felt secure in its atomic monopoly. With the American "Pax Atomica" in place, the free world held an apparent strategic advantage over the Soviet bloc and saw itself as a bulwark against communist expansion. But America's atomic superiority in the early postwar years was more fiction than fact. From 1945 until 1950, the U.S. atomic arsenal was poorly coordinated, equipped and funded. The newly formed Atomic Energy Commission inherited from the Manhattan Engineer District a program suffering from poor organization, failing infrastructure and internal conflict. The military establishment and the Air Force's Strategic Air Command little knew what to do with this new weapon. The Air Force and the AEC failed to coordinate their efforts for a possible atomic air offensive and war plans were ill-conceived, reflecting unrealistic expectations of Air Force capabilities and possible political outcomes. This lack of preparedness serves as a case study in the tenuous nature of American civilian-military relationships. Program presented in partnership with the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.

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