Wichita African American history

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A pastor in northeast Wichita is offering a Black History Video Series and community discussion every 3rd Sunday in Wichita. The idea to show videos and discuss African-American leaders stemmed from an incident at a public school on the East Coast. Godfrey Patterson, pastor of Wichita’s St. Paul AME Church, says a student there could not tell the teacher the name of the late civil rights leader Malcolm X. “They asked [the teacher], 'Who was Malcolm 10?'" Patterson says. "Well, that let me...

http://www.vet.k-state.edu/

While working on the African Americans of Wichita book project, I was struck by how many prominent figures of the 20th century were veterinarians. For example, Dr. Thomas G. Perry opened the first small animal hospital on Cleveland Street in 1921, later joining the faculty of Tuskegee Institute in Alabama. Other figures included Dr. G. T. Bronson, Tuskegee airman Dr. Don Jackson and Dr. T. E. McDonald. Given that my father is a veterinarian, the number of animal doctors in the community...

Jay Price / KMUW

The McClinton Market is gone. Back in 2011, things seemed more promising when the building at 1205 E 12th Street in Wichita was placed on the National Register of Historic Places. I remember that nomination; I was on the State Historic Sites Board of Review then. It was one of the few surviving early African American owned business buildings in the city. A modest frame structure, the building housed the store of Curtis McClinton. McClinton had come to Wichita in the 1940s and opened his...

As we think of the founders of the Wichita area, some names are well known: Mead, Greiffenstein and Munger among them. Others are less known but worth considering. One of them is Feldin Buckner. Buckner was the slave of a Judge Buckner in Kentucky. When Judge Buckner moved to Missouri, he freed Feldin... or "Fielding," depending on the source. Feldin Buckner married and had a large family. We know from the birthplaces of his eight children that the family moved to Iowa and Nebraska before...

Carla Eckels

It’s reported that less than half of the 2.5-million African American soldiers who registered for the armed forces at the beginning of World War II were called to serve. Those who were enlisted found that as they served their country abroad, they still faced less than a democratic reception at home. The Pittsburgh Courier , one of the most widely circulated African-American newspapers of its time, received a humble, patriotic, but assertive letter to the editor in 1942. It was penned by 26...

Dr. Galyn Vesey is a unique individual in the context of Wichita history. Vesey received his Ph.D. from Syracuse University and his academic career included stints at Utica College and Alabama A & M University. He not only represents “living history” but also seeks, as a scholar, to re-create an important part of Wichita’s African American historical experience. As a teenager, Vesey was one of the participants in the legendary Dockum Drug Store “sit-in” during the summer of 1958. As a...

Fletcher Powell / KMUW

Kudos are in order for Wichita’s James Arbertha and the Power Community Development Corporation for their long standing efforts to renovate the historic Dunbar Theater at 10th and Cleveland.