10 Signs You're An ICT History Buff
Do you think you're an expert on Wichita's roots? There's just one way to find out! Check out these 10 Signs You're a Wichita History Buff.
You're a Member of the Wichita History From My Perspective Facebook Group
The Wichita History From My Perspective Facebook group allows members to post photos and stories of life in Wichita dating all the way back to the incorporation of Wichita as a city. This group, founded by Barb Meyers, who created the group while studying for a graduate degree in Local and Community History at Wichita State University, has a casual and conversational tone.
A community within itself, the members of the group talk and act like old friends, reminiscing together. If you're into Wichita's history, you're already a part of this group. If you're really into Wichita history, you're one of the most active members in the group, sharing new content as often as possible.
You Know the Original Uses of Almost All the Oldtown Warehouses
Today, Wichita's hopping Old Town is filled with restaurants, bars, clubs, hotels, stores and more, though it hasn't always been this way. Old Town was originally a warehouse district, housing companies like Keen Cutter, Hockaday Paint Company, the Coleman Factory and more. Wichita Historians are familiar with names like these, and they can identify the original uses of most of the historic buildings that still stand today. Can you?
If you need a refresher, you can check out these Old Town Buildings Then and Now!
You're Well-versed in Aviation History, Too
You're probably familiar with companies like Cessna and Beech, but these are just a few of the key players in Wichita's Aviation history.
Named the Air Capital of the World, Wichita is home to several airports, both public and private. Home also to several aircraft companies, Wichita is a hub for both aircraft production and service.
To learn more, take a look at this blog on Wichita's Aviation History.
You're a Joyland Aficionado
You remember riding the Whacky Shack, the roller coaster and the Log Jam. You remember being creeped out bu Louie the Clown, feeding Porky the Paper Eater and visiting Kiddieland. But most of all, you remember the sinking feeling in your stomach when you heard that the park was finally closing. These are things that almost everyone who visited will recall about Joyland, but there are certain things that only a true Wichita history buff would know.
Did you know that Joyland was home to the first ever CP Huntington train, manufactured by what would later become Whichta's Chance Rides? Did you know that Joyland officially started in Goodland, Kansas, as a much smaller park named Playland? Did you also know that Joyland had more than one location in Wichita over the years? If you spend a lot of time studying Wichita's roots, you probably answered yes to all of those questions.
If any of these things come as a surprise to you, you can read the full Story of Joyland.
You Know How Old Our City is and the Date It was Founded By Heart
Wichita was founded on July 21, 1870 and it will turn 147 years old this year. But, of course, you already knew that, didn't you? In any case, Wichita has come a very long way in its time. From dirt roads and horses to the digital age we live in today, Wichita has been changing and evolving since day one, and I suspect it will continue to do so for the rest of time.
You Know Your Way Around Old Cowtown Museum
Gunfights are no stranger to the streets of Cowtown, and neither are you! If you're a Wichita enthusiast, you've probably spent a great deal of time at Old Cowtown Museum, which is filled with historical artifacts that were crucial to life on the plains in the late 1800's.
You might even be able to identify which of Cowtowns buildings are original, 19th-century builds, and which were added in period-appropriate styles at a later date. If you've never visited Old Cowtown museum, add a visit to your calendar. It's definitely worth checking out. More information about Old Cowtown Museum.
You Know About All of Wichita's Celebrities
Carry Nation destroyed the Eaton Hotel bar. The Big Show, a Wichitan, is a professional wrestler in the WWE. Hattie McDaniel of Wichita won an Academy Award for her portrayal of Mammy in "Gone With the Wind" and was the first African-American to win the award. Colton Haynes, a Wichita native and famous actor appears in MTV's "Teen Wolf" and ABC's "The Gates". Athletes Barry Sanders and Lynette Woodard have called Wichita home, too. Easy, peasy.
Didn't know that? That's okay. You can learn more about Wichita's celebrities in our blog.
Two Words: Fairmount College
Fairmount College was the original name of Wichita State University. Founded in 1886 by the Rev. Joseph Homer Parker, the then-Christian school was affiliated with the Congregational Church. Classes didn't begin until 1895. Shortly thereafter, sports were incorporated. Fairmount College offered football, basketball, baseball and track for its men and basketball for the women.
However, times were tough, and by the mid 1920s, financial concerns threatened Fairmount College. Changing to a public ownership seemed like the best solution, though it failed when taken to the polls in 1925. The following year, however, the proposition won by a landslide, converting Fairmount College into the Municipal University of Wichita. It wasn't until 1964 that the school became Wichita State University.
You've Read Up on the Wichita Indians
Home to the Keeper of the Plains, the Mid-American All-Indian Center and a variety of streets named for different tribes, it's hard to deny Wichita's Native American roots.
The Wichita Indians inhabited a large portion of the Midwest roughly 800 years ago. Stretching from Wichita Falls, Texas to Wichita, Kansas and beyond, they lived simple lives. Living in villages filled with rectangular houses made of mud, the Wichita indians strictly adhered to gender roles. Women would tend to the gardens using tools made from the bones of buffalo, and the men hunted deer, buffalo, and small game. Some Wichitas would eventually move on to construct larger villages with round houses made of grass. Others moved to the north and settled in the area that would later be known as Quivira by Spanish explorers.
Who Were the Wichita Indians? Click to find out more.
You're Always on 360Wichita.com
If you're truly a Wichita history buff, you're always looking for more interesting information about our city's past. You're likely a regular on the blogs section of 360Wichita.com, which highlights Wichita and its history in nearly all of its posts. With stories on the Orpheum's history, the implosion of the Allis Hotel, and more, we're a great resource for local history. Our blogs feature Wichita business, community members, fun facts, ways to get involved in the community and more.
In addition to blogs, you'll find information on current local events, exciting news, restaurant coupons and promotions and more when you visit 360Wichita.com. View the 360Wichita.com home page.