Concordia’s Work Stories

Sisters Miriam and Louise Vaughan

When The Way We Worked Smithsonian Institution traveling exhibition was at the National Orphan Train Complex, Concordia residents contributed their work stories to the exhibition’s audio tours. From the sometimes messy work experiences of an egg separator to twin sisters whose desire to help people led them down two different career paths, Concordia’s work stories offer a glimpse into north central Kansas’ working world.

Where We Worked with Gwen Trost. The food industry has a reputation for being messy, and Gwen Chizek Trost’s stories from the Seymour Packing Plant are no different. Transcript.

How We Worked with Paul Rimovsky. Music has always been one of America’s favorite pastimes, but few Americans have the opportunity to work in the music industry. Paul Rimovsky is one of those lucky few. Transcript.

Who Worked with Marlesa Roney. Marlesa Roney’s family owned and operated three movies theaters in Concordia, including the Brown Grand Theatre. Transcript.

Why We Worked with Miriam and Louise Vaughan. Twin sisters Miriam and Louise Vaughan both became Sisters of St. Joseph. They entered the convent together and then went their separate ways: Miriam began work as a teacher and Louise as a nurse. Transcript.


For Your Listening Pleasure

The Way We Worked Smithsonian Institution traveling exhibition has come and gone at the Stevens County Library in Hugoton and the High Plains Museum in Goodland, but you can still learn about the work stories of these communities through audio tours recorded for the exhibition.

Stevens County Library, Hugoton

Cowboys, wildcatters, one-room schoolteachers, and postmasters — the list of occupations in Stevens County in the late 1800s and early 1900s reads like something out of a Wild West novel. However, life and work in southwest Kansas was anything but fiction. Click on the titles to listen to the work stories of Stevens County.

Where We Worked: Southwest Kansas Cowboys. The Beaty family established cattle ranches in southwest Kansas in the late 1800s. Transcript

How We Worked: Gas Capital of the Southwest. The discovery of natural gas in Stevens County in the 1920s changed life and work in Hugoton. Transcript

Who Works: Rural Children at Work. Rural children led a busy life balancing schoolwork with farm chores. Transcript

Why We Work: Mail Call. Whether by cart, wagon, rail, or auto — it took a lot of work to deliver the mail to southwest Kansas farmers and homesteaders. Transcript

High Plains Museum, Goodland

one-room school early 1900s, Sherman CoFrom the farmer using a mobile app to track water usage to the family trading corporate careers in the city for the slower pace of jobs in a small town, work in northwest Kansas takes many unexpected forms. Click on the titles to listen to the work stories from Goodland.

Where We Worked: Changes on the Farm. Over a century, high tech equipment has replaced simple machines on the farm. Transcript

How We Worked: Education. A look at the work of students, from slates to computers. Transcript

Who Works: Work in a Small Town. A couple abandons corporate jobs and urban amenities for a new life in Goodland. Transcript

Why We Work. What happens to our work when we retire? Transcript

Click here to learn more about The Way We Worked Kansas tour.


More from Lyons

“The Way We Worked” closed at the Coronado Quivira Museum in Lyons on October 21, but you can still learn about Rice County’s work history from the exhibit’s audio tours, now available online:

Raymond Telephone: The telephone changed work and life in Raymond, Kansas. Transcript

Harvest in Rice County: Don Keesling first job on the family farm taught him the value of hard work. Transcript

Dr. Gene Zaid: Dr. Zaid’s work help him realize the American dream. Transcript

Goodfellows: How the work of volunteers benefits the community. Transcript

More information about Rice County’s work history can be found on podcasts available on the Coronado Quivira Museum’s website.