If your ancestors ever lived or worked in the ‘Heart of America‘ … that would have to be Kansas, either when it was a territory or later a state. So you will be interested in the large collection of information and photos from the University of Kansas.
Check the collection of photographs first. Start by browsing the categories. Click on that link ‘Category Pages’. Here is an array of time frames for photos and topics. It is divided into When-Who-What-Where. You will see locations outside of Kansas also.
There are a few images for each category but more are being added. When you click to enlarge an image, details about the photo are to the left side. So there are several places and people to explore there.
Then there are more recent aerial views of Kansas City locations taken in 2002. Or look over the wonderful selection of the Sanborn Fire Maps for Kansas. They cover several time frames and provide a good deal of information. See the category pages to review the selections. The Dodge City map begins in 1884. Several other cities and towns have maps for 1883.
Another photo collection for Kansas, marked on the left side is the Pennell Collection with 30,000 glass negatives that have been scanned digitally. Joseph J. Pennell was a commercial studio photographer in Junction City, Kansas and worked from 1890s to 1920s. If you had ancestors in Junction City, this would be a great link to review. Use the category pages to see the selections. There are numerous photos of the soldiers (from other regions) who are stationed over the years in different Kansas forts. If your ancestor served in the military and stationed in Kansas from 1890s to 1920s, do review the site. Many of his portrait images are two or three poses together, very interesting.
Overall some 171,000 items in the numerous collections, all relating to Kansas. A good site to bookmark for your research.
Photos: Young boy, Frank McKnight with a football in 1900 and Fort Riley soldiers in 1897 and Dodge City in 1912.
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