How Flat is Kansas? A blog about the flattest state in the US and all the interesting things to do there.
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The Landscape of Kansas
The Great Plains
The Great Plains is a vast and mostly featureless expanse of grassland that covers much of the interior of the United States. It stretches from the Mississippi River in the east to the Rocky Mountains in the west, and from Canada to Mexico. The plains are generally thought of as being flat, but there is actually a great deal of topographical variation within them.
In the east, the plains gradually rise up from sea level to an elevation of about 3,000 feet (900 meters) at the edge of the Rocky Mountains. This easternmost part of the plains is known as the Great Plains Heightened Region, or simply the High Plains. The highest point on the plains is Black Mesa in Oklahoma, which reaches an elevation of 4,973 feet (1,516 meters).
Farther west, the plains descend from the High Plains into a series of lower plateaus and valleys. These include the Llano Estacado (or Staked Plains) in Texas and New Mexico; the Dissected Till Plains in Iowa, Nebraska, and Kansas; and other smaller regions such as the Arkansas Valley and Ozark Plateau. Finally, at the base of the Rocky Mountains, there are a series of basins known asMontane Meadows that are home to such major cities as Denver, Colorado Springs, and Cheyenne, Wyoming.
In terms of relief (or elevation changes), then, Kansas is actually quite diverse. However, it is still generally considered to be a flat state because it has an average elevation that is significantly lower than most other states in America.
The Flint Hills
The Flint Hills is a region of Kansas that includes parts of Chase, Greenwood, Lyon, Morris, Miami, and Osage counties. The name “Flint Hills” is a reference to the underlying bedrock which is composed of flint. The area around the Flint Hills is home to the Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve.
The Osage Plains
The Osage Plains is a physiographic region of the midwestern United States extending westward from central Missouri into eastern Kansas, Oklahoma, andTexas. It lies between the Ozark Plateau on the east and the Flint Hills on the west. The Osage Plains is a gently rolling prairie grassland. pas-sages through the plains are defined by streams rather than by topographic relieved by smallnes-scale escarpments such as that formed by the Niobrara River in northern Nebraska. Eleva-tions range from 300 to 1,500 feet (91–457 m).
The People of Kansas
The people of Kansas have a lot of pride in their state. They are hard working and have a strong work ethic. They are also very friendly and welcoming to newcomers. Kansas is a great place to live and work.
The Native Americans
Kansas was originally inhabited by a number of Native American tribes, including the Wichita, the Kansa, the Missouri, and the Osage. The first Europeans to settle in Kansas were the French, who set up a number of trading posts in the 18th century. Eventually, the area came under the control of the Spanish and then the Americans.
The first people to settle in Kansas were the Native Americans who came to the area thousands of years ago. Eventually, tribes like the Kansas, the Osage, and the Pawnee made their homes in the state.
In 1803, the United States bought Kansas from France as part of the Louisiana Purchase. At first, the only people who came to Kansas were traders and hunters. But in 1827, a group of missionaries came to start a mission among the Shawnee Indians.
Between 1834 and 1861, many different Indian tribes were moved to Kansas from other parts of the country. This period is called “Indian removal.” The Indians were forced to move because white settlers wanted their land.
The first permanent white settlement in Kansas was Fort Leavenworth, which was built in 1827. In 1854, a group of New Englanders settled in Kansas Territory near present-day Lawrence. They wanted to create a free state where slavery would be illegal. This group was called “Free-Staters” or “anti-slavery activists.”
The majority of people who live in Kansas are farmers. They grow wheat, corn, and other crops. Kansas is also known for its cattle ranches. Most of the beef that is raised in Kansas is sent to other parts of the United States.
The farmers of Kansas are very important to the state’s economy. They provide food for people all over the country. They also help to keep the state’s population stable. Without farmers, many small towns in Kansas would disappear.
The Economy of Kansas
The Wheat Industry
Kansas is the top wheat-producing state in the United States. The state’s production levels have varied widely over the years, depending on such factors as international demand and wheat prices, droughts, and floods. In a typical year, Kansas produces about 15% of the nation’s wheat. The majority of the wheat grown in Kansas is hard red winter wheat, which is used for bread flour. Hard red spring wheat, used for pastry flour, makes up a smaller percentage of the state’s wheat crop.
The farming of wheat began in Kansas in the mid-19th century, and by the early 20th century, the state was one of the nation’s leading wheat producers. However, production levels declined sharply in the 1920s and 1930s due to drought and dust storms known as the Dust Bowl. In 1934, production levels hit an all-time low, but they began to rebound in the late 1930s as farmers started using new irrigation and soil conservation methods.
During World War II, demand for wheat increased as other countries were unable to produce enough to meet their needs. This helped Kansas farmers recover from the Dust Bowl years, but when the war ended, demand decreased and production levels once again dipped. In recent years, production has remained relatively stable due to government programs that help farmers offset low prices.
The Cattle Industry
The cattle industry is a vital part of the economy in Kansas. In fact, it is the largest agricultural sector in the state, generating $3.6 billion in annual sales and supporting more than 28,000 jobs. The beef cattle industry alone is responsible for $2.5 billion in annual sales.
Kansas is home to more than 6 million head of cattle, which makes it the seventh-largest cattle-producing state in the country. The majority of Kansas’ beef cattle are fed on grain and hay that is grown on the state’s nearly 30 million acres of farmland.
The state’s location at the center of the country makes it a prime location for transporting cattle to slaughterhouses and meatpacking plants. In fact, Kansas is home to one of the largest beef-packing plants in the world, located in Liberal.
The cattle industry also has a significant impact on other sectors of the Kansas economy, such as agriculture, tourism, and retail trade.
The Oil Industry
The oil and gas industry is the largest economic sector in Kansas, accounting for about 12 percent of the state’s gross domestic product. More than 10,000 people are employed in the oil and gas industry in Kansas, with an annual payroll of about $1.2 billion.
Kansas is home to two major oil refineries – the Frontline Refinery in El Dorado and the CVR Energy refinery in Coffeyville. Together, these two refineries have a capacity of processing more than 300,000 barrels of crude oil per day.
In addition to the oil refineries, Kansas is also home to a number of oil and gas production companies. These companies are responsible for drilling new wells, developing existing wells, and operating Kansas’s nearly 7,500 miles of pipelines.
The Culture of Kansas
Kansas may be flatter than a pancake, but that doesn’t mean it’s devoid of culture. From the big city sights of Wichita to the small-town charm of Leavenworth, there’s something for everyone in Kansas. Let’s explore the culture of the Sunflower State.
The Music of Kansas
The music of Kansas is diverse. The state has produced country music, jazz, blues, and rock and roll performers. Its most famous musician isonna be Kris Kristofferson, who wrote “Me and Bobby McGee” as well as other hits. Other well-known Kansans in the music industry are Melissa Etheridge, Janis Joplin, and Charlie Parker.
The Art of Kansas
Kansas has a long and rich history of art and culture. The state is home to several museums and theaters, as well as a number of art galleries. Kansas is also home to two major art festivals, the Kansas City Blues and Jazz Festival and the Wichita Riverfest.
The state is also home to a number of performing arts groups, including the Kansas City Symphony, the Wichita Symphony Orchestra, and the Kansas City Repertory Theatre. Kansas also has a number of professional sports teams, including the Kansas City Royals (baseball), the Kansas City Chiefs (football), and the Wichita Wings (basketball).
The Literature of Kansas
From the moment the first settlers stepped foot in Kansas, they have been creating a literature all their own. This literature is a reflection of the values, the dreams, and the hopes of the people of Kansas.
Some of the earliest literary works from Kansas were penned by John Muir, who wrote about his experiences homesteading on the Kansas prairie in his book, A Thousand Mile Walk to the Gulf. Other early writers include Amelia Earhart, who wrote about her solo flight across America; Laura Ingalls Wilder, whose Little House on the Prairie books are based on her childhood in Kansas; and Willa Cather, who set many of her stories in Kansas.
Kansas has also produced its share of poets, including Langston Hughes, who was born in Joplin, Missouri, but spent much of his childhood in Lawrence; William S. Burroughs, whose classic Beat Generation novel Naked Lunch is set in Kansas City; and Denise Newman, whose most recent poetry collection is titled Flight Lessons: Poems fromKansas.
In recent years,Kansas writers have been winning some of the biggest prizes in literature. In 2012, Ruth Sweazy won the PEN/Faulkner Award for her novel Lucky Ones; In 2013, William Lychack won the Bram Stoker Award for his short story collection The Wasp Rider; and 2014 saw Kathleen Rooney take home the Paterson Prize for Poetry for her book O’Neill Haven: A Romance.