Culture

Farmer Doolittle was Wichita's original citizen reporter.

by Michael Carmody | Thursday, May 15 | Posted in Culture

On Dec. 19, 1872, The Wichita Eagle ran a short, humorous letter sent from the nearby village of El Paso (now Derby); its author signed it with the simple pseudonym "Farmer Doolittle." It would prove to be the start of a relationship that would last nearly 50 years.

George Haver Litzenberg was born into a family of farmers in Greene County, Pennsylvania, in 1837. At the age of 18, he relocated to Illinois, where he befriended lawyer-turned-politician Abraham Lincoln; he was even a spectator at the first Lincoln-Douglas debate in 1858.

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The early days of St. Francis Hospital

by Michael Carmody | Thursday, May 8 | Posted in Culture

For a century and a quarter, the medical center today known as Via Christi Hospital, St. Francis Campus, has served this region, always staying up-to-date with the latest in technology and treatment techniques. Yet through the decades, the hospital has managed to continue to be guided by the spirit of charity and service upon which it was founded by a band of scrappy European nuns.

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The Jayhawk Nazi and the Defender.

by Michael Carmody | Thursday, April 17 | Posted in Culture

The recent death of Topeka's Fred Phelps unleashed a perhaps understandable wave of schadenfreude among decent folks in our fair state and abroad, but the Westboro Baptist Church's patriarch was far from the first Kansan to use Christ as a shield while preaching hatred and bigotry.

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by Michael Carmody | Thursday, April 3 | Posted in Culture

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, a concerted and diligent effort was made to establish Wichita as a beacon of higher education. A surprising number of public and private schools, academies, institutes, colleges and universities were founded between the city's beginning and World War I (see Jan. 16, 2014 edition of F5), some of which survive today.

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by Michael Carmody | Thursday, February 20 | Posted in Culture

In recognition of Black History Month, this week's Wichitarchaeology digs deep into the earliest black history of the Wichita area.

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by Aaron Wirtz | Thursday, March 14 | Posted in Culture

Last week, I received a letter at my job that had the following headline: WARNING: Is Your Competition Trying To Bad Mouth You?

The letter was five pages thick and adorned with the colored logos of Google, Yelp and the Yellow Pages, and they were even nice enough to reprint some of our own photos from our Google+ Local listing. This letter must have taken half an Inkjet cartridge to print, so I gave it a look. Naturally, the claims got worse.

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Ackerman Island's Wonderland Park was a smash hit in early Wichita, until blue laws took it down.

by Michael Carmody | Thursday, March 14 | Posted in Culture

Enough time has passed since the closing of Joyland to see the maturation of a generation of young Wichitans who have neither fond memories of its creaky wooden "Queen of the Prairie" rollercoaster nor terrifying nightmares of Louie the Clown at the Wurlitzer Band Organ. But one must backtrack several additional generations to find among the living those who recall Wichita's earlier amusement attraction, Wonderland Park.

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by Aaron Wirtz | Thursday, March 14 | Posted in Culture

Last week, I received a letter at my job that had the following headline: WARNING: Is Your Competition Trying To Bad Mouth You?

The letter was five pages thick and adorned with the colored logos of Google, Yelp and the Yellow Pages, and they were even nice enough to reprint some of our own photos from our Google+ Local listing. This letter must have taken half an Inkjet cartridge to print, so I gave it a look. Naturally, the claims got worse.

Read more ...

Ackerman Island's Wonderland Park was a smash hit in early Wichita, until blue laws took it down.

by Michael Carmody | Thursday, March 14 | Posted in Culture

Enough time has passed since the closing of Joyland to see the maturation of a generation of young Wichitans who have neither fond memories of its creaky wooden "Queen of the Prairie" rollercoaster nor terrifying nightmares of Louie the Clown at the Wurlitzer Band Organ. But one must backtrack several additional generations to find among the living those who recall Wichita's earlier amusement attraction, Wonderland Park.

Read more ...

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