Presentation explores Kansas towns lost to time

093014-kansas-ghost-townThe Friends of the Osage City Public Library will host “Lost Kansas Communities,” a presentation and discussion by M.J. Morgan, at 6 p.m. Friday, Oct. 3, at Osage City Public Library, 515 Main St. Members of the community are invited to attend the free program.

Kansas has nearly 9,000 disappeared towns and communities, caused by its unusual and spectacularly fast settlement history. The variety of town types is as striking as the stories they left behind. This talk will explore research conducted on lost Kansas places and discuss problems researchers have when searching for information.

M.J. Morgan is the director of research at the Chapman Center for Rural Studies at Kansas State University. Her specialty is the reconstruction of lost landscapes and environments as well as research into cultures and peoples whose voices do not often appear in standard histories.

“Although so many early photographs show nearly identical Main Streets for thousands of disappeared Kansas communities, there is no such thing as a cookie cutter small town,” said Morgan. “Every little place was someone’s hometown. With creative research, we can find those hometowns as they exist in archives and memories.”

“Lost Kansas Communities” is part of the Kansas Humanities Council’s Humanities Speakers Bureau, featuring presentations and discussions that examine our shared human experience—our innovations, culture, heritage, and conflicts.

Contact the Osage City Public Library at 785-528-3727 for more information about the presentation.

The program is made possible by the Kansas Humanities Council. For more information about KHC programs contact the council at 785-357-0359 or visit

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