Read, discuss, listen, and learn with this weekend’s Humanities Happenings events.
Topeka: A League of Their Own
In the early 20th century when Mexico was at war with itself, hundreds of thousands of Mexicans left their homeland and migrated to the United States. In the Midwest and West, the railroad companies, meat packing industry, and mining operations vied for Mexican workers as an inexpensive labor force. As the Mexican populations grew in Kansas, so did projects to “Americanize” the children. Softball fields became the intended places to assimilate these kids, but instead the games became community spots where neighborhoods asserted their own unique identities. Gene T. Chavez, Speakers Bureau, will trace the development of Mexican American fast-pitch softball in the Sunflower State. April 11th at Washburn Institute of Technology at 10:00am. Click here for details.
Augusta: Green Thumbs in the Great Depression
During the bleak days of the Dust Bowl, women used their green thumbs and gardening skills to extend their daily menus, earn money, and even beautify their dreary environs. Drawing from first-hand accounts, Sara Jane Richter, Speakers Bureau, explores the vegetables, flowers, and medicinal herbs these women cultivated within the harshest conditions during the Great Depression. By experimenting with and cultivating hardy breeds many women were able to augment their families’ menu, larder, meals, and mood. April 11th at Augusta Public Library at 10:30am. Click here for details.
Goodland: Sports & Spirituality
Anetso, a centuries-old Cherokee ball game, is a vigorous, sometimes violent activity that rewards speed, strength, and agility. A precursor to lacrosse, Cherokee people still play it today. Observers also note that it is the focus of several linked ritual activities. Is is a sport, or a religious ritual? Could it be both? Why has it survived through centuries of upheaval and change? Drawing from his book on the subject, Hometown Teams Tour Scholar Dr. Michael J. Zogry will consider these questions as he provides a multimedia introduction to anetso. April 11th at High Plains Museum at 2:00pm. Click here for details.
This presentation is part of the “Hometown Teams: How Sports Shape America” Smithsonian Institution traveling exhibition on display through May 3rd.
Glasco: Glory Days
The Dug Out Coffee House and Reception will discuss stories and memories of sports and play in Glasco. Hear from past team members, families, and coaches. A dialogue on women in sports will be encouraged. April 12th at Glasco Community Foundation at 2:00pm. Click here for details.
This event supports “A Triple Threat on the Diamond, Field, and Court,” a special exhibit that explores the sports heritage of Glasco. The project is part of “Hometown Teams,” a statewide initiative exploring the way sports build and unite communities.
Kinsley: Environmental & Cultural History Collide
Fort Hays State University history professor Leo E. Oliva will use a series of interviews, recorded nearly 60 years after the Dust Bowl, to examine the lasting impact of the Dust Bowl on families. Richard Basore, Watershed Field Coordinator for the Kansas Department of Health & Environment will discuss watershed restoration and protection strategies.
This event is part of a series of reading discussions that support the exhibit “Dust, Drought, and Dreams Gone Dry.”
Jetmore: Kansas Anti-Horse Thief Societies
John K. Burchill, Speakers Bureau, discusses how Kansas was once the center of operations for many organized bands of horse thieves. In reaction, many independent anti-horse thief societies were formed, with the national Anti-Horse Thief Association especially strong in Kansas. By 1910 Kansas held the most members, was home to The Anti-Horse Thief Weekly News, and consistently had residents hold offices in the national order. So effective were these organizations that local law enforcement were often the first to join, and the Kansas Bank Commissioner called for their assistance to help fight bank robberies that plagued the state. April 12th at Horsethief Reservoir at 2:00pm. Click here for details.
Stafford: Letters of a Woman Homesteader
Stewart took up homesteading in 1909 to prove that a woman could ranch. Her captivating letters reveal the isolation, the beauty, and the joy of working the prairie. 282 pp. Jennifer Jo Krisuk leads the TALK book discussion. April 12th at Stafford County & Genealogical Society at 1:30pm. Click here for details.
Don’t forget to check our events calendar often for new and upcoming humanities events!