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Kansas /ˈkænzəs/ (About this soundlisten) is a U.S. state in the Midwestern United States. Its capital is Topeka and its largest city is Wichita, with its most populated county being Johnson County. Kansas is bordered by Nebraska on the north; Missouri on the east; Oklahoma on the south; and Colorado on the west. Kansas is named after the Kansas River, which in turn was named after the Kansa Native Americans who lived along its banks. The tribe's name (natively kką:ze) is often said to mean "people of the (south) wind" although this was probably not the term's original meaning. For thousands of years, what is now Kansas was home to numerous and diverse Native American tribes. Tribes in the eastern part of the state generally lived in villages along the river valleys. Tribes in the western part of the state were semi-nomadic and hunted large herds of bison.

Kansas was first settled by Americans in 1827 with the establishment of Fort Leavenworth. The pace of settlement accelerated in the 1850s, in the midst of political wars over the slavery debate. When it was officially opened to settlement by the U.S. government in 1854 with the Kansas–Nebraska Act, abolitionist Free-Staters from New England and pro-slavery settlers from neighboring Missouri rushed to the territory to determine whether Kansas would become a free state or a slave state. Thus, the area was a hotbed of violence and chaos in its early days as these forces collided, and was known as Bleeding Kansas. The abolitionists prevailed, and on January 29, 1861, Kansas entered the Union as a free state, hence the unofficial nickname "The Free State."

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Lieutenant General Michael D. Lundy has been Commandant since June 2016.

The Commandant of the United States Army Command and General Staff College is the highest-ranking official at the United States Army's Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, installation. The position is similar to the West Point Superintendent and is roughly equivalent to the chancellor or president of an American civilian university. Since 1976, the commandant has been a Lieutenant General (three stars) and is also in charge of the United States Army Combined Arms Center which includes other training organizations at Fort Leavenworth.

The General Staff College, which is a graduate school, trains a high number of United States Army field officers, many of whom go on to become general officers, including all of the five-star generals since World War II. The college is part of the United States Army Training and Doctrine Command. Read more...

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Greensburg kansas watertower 2009.jpg

Greensburg is a city in central Kiowa County, located in Southwest Kansas, in the Central United States. The population was 1,574 at the 2000 census. It is the county seat and most populous city of Kiowa County. Greensburg is also home to the world's largest hand-dug well.

On May 4, 2007, Greensburg was devastated by an EF5 tornado that traveled rapidly through the area, leveling at least 95 percent of the city and killing 11 people. The tornado was estimated to be 1.7 miles (2.7 km) in width and traveled for nearly 22 miles (35 km). Ninety-five percent of the city was confirmed to be destroyed, with the other five percent being severely damaged. The National Weather Service estimated winds of the tornado to reach 205 mph (330 km/h). This was the first tornado to be rated EF5 since the update of the Fujita scale. The tornado had caused EF5 damage to at least one well-built home in Greensburg, and also is the first "5" classification since May 3, 1999, when an F5 tornado ripped through Moore, Oklahoma, as part of the 1999 Oklahoma tornado outbreak.

Greensburg was named for D. R. "Cannonball" Green, who owned a stagecoach company and who helped to form the city.

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Riley (Kansas) County Courthouse 1.jpg
Credit: Kevin Zollman
Riley County Courthouse in Manhattan Kansas.

Important dates in Kansas' history

July–August 1541 
Coronado explores Kansas
April 30, 1803 
Louisiana Purchase Treaty signed
May 30, 1854 
Kansas Territory organized
July 29, 1859 
Constitution adopted by convention
January 29, 1861
Kansas becomes 34th state
August 21, 1863
Quantrill's Raid on Lawrence
Spring 1879
Exodusters
February 19, 1881 
First state to Constitutionally prohibit alcohol
1890s
Populist Revolt
July 1951
Great Flood of 1951
May 17, 1954 
Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka

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State symbols:

The American Bison, Kansas' state mammal.

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Frank Carlson (January 23, 1893 – May 30, 1987) was an American politician who served as thirtieth Governor of Kansas and United States Representative and United States Senator from Kansas.

In 1946 Carlson was elected governor of Kansas. As governor, he pushed mental health programs as well as a long-term highway project. In 1949, Kansas senator Clyde M. Reed died, and Carlson appointed Harry Darby to fill the seat. Darby continued his service in the Senate until Carlson himself was elected to fill the seat in 1950. Instead of waiting until January to be sworn in, he took his seat on November 28, 1950, leaving the office of governor to Frank L. Hagaman who served less than two months.

In 1952, he campaigned to get fellow Kansan Dwight D. Eisenhower into the White House, and then brokered a deal through Senator Robert A. Taft of Ohio, known as "Mr. Republican" for his leadership of the party's right-wing, became majority leader. According to Billy Graham's biography Just As I Am, Carlson organized the first Presidential Prayer Breakfast, later known as the National Prayer Breakfast and sponsored behind-the-scenes by The Family, a Christian political organization. In 1950, Carlson traveled to Haiti on behalf of The Family and returned to urge Congress to support the regime of the dictator Papa Doc Duvalier. Carlson was re-elected twice, in 1956 and 1962, before returning to Concordia for retirement. (Read more...)

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