Four Centuries in KansasFour Centuries in Kansas

by Bliss Isely and W. M. Richards

Originally a textbook, but still an interesting read. Covers Kansas history from the Indians to World War I. Includes resources, activities, and discussion questions. Hardcover or paperback. Read more »

Historical Atlas of KansasHistorical Atlas of Kansas

by Homer E. Socolofsky and Huber Self

This outstanding resource contains over 70 maps of Kansas, illustrating many aspects of the state’s changing landscapes. Find out where natural landforms are located, where early Indian tribes lived, where trails crossed the state, where immigrants settled, and much, much more! Hardcover or paperback. Read more »

Kansas Forts and Bases: Sentinels on the Prairie

Kansas Forts & Bases

by Debra Goodrich Bisel and Michelle M. Martin

Not all of us can readily absorb military history without getting bogged down in the technicalities. Thankfully, this book is supremely readable, providing an era-by-era overview of Kansas forts as reflective of the broader picture of Kansas history overall. Hardcover, paperback, or Kindle. Read more »

FREE: “Coronado”


by Maude Davis Crosno

A poem told from the perspective of Coronado, looking back on his failed expeditions to find gold.

Ambushed at DawnFREE: “Ambushed at Dawn: An Archeological Analysis of the Catastrophic Defeat of the 1720 Villasur Expedition”

by Benjamin J. Bilgri

An examination of the route of the expedition whose demise ended the period of Spanish supremacy in the Great Plains. Makes a solid case for the Scott County location of El Cuartelejo. PDF.

Fort LeavenworthFort Leavenworth: Gateway to the West

by J. Patrick Hughes

Begins with French explorers and progresses through the Santa Fe Trail, the Oregon Trail, the Mexican–American War, Bleeding Kansas, the Civil War, and the Indian wars. The final two chapters explores the fort’s more recent role as the “Schoolhouse of the Army.” Paperback.

How We Crossed the WestHow We Crossed the West: The Adventures of Lewis and Clark

by Rosalyn Schanzer

A child-friendly book, but still accurate and useful. The author has carefully chosen excerpts from the diaries of Lewis, Clark, and others involved to tell the story. Hardcover or paperback. Read more »

Gleanings From Western PrairiesFREE: Gleanings from Western Prairies

by Rev. W. E. Youngman

An interesting fictional account of the Osage Catholic Mission of the early days of Kansas. Variety of eBook formats. Read more »

A Kansas Soldier at War: The Civil War Letters of Christian and Elise Dubach Isely

A Kansas Soldier at War

by Ken Spurgeon

The Civil War era was a challenging time that severely put the nation, its families, and its values to the test. This book offers fascinating insight into the human element of the conflict. Hardcover, paperback, or Kindle. Read more »

Peopling the Plains: Who Settled Where in Frontier Kansas

Peopling the Plains

by James Shortridge

Maps and census statistics break down the state’s population into settlers from New England, North Midland, Upper Southern, and Lower Southern states, as well as various foreign countries. After an in-depth examination of each of the different phases of settlement in Kansas, Shortridge wraps up with an interesting look at the way these statistics may have affected the politics, religion, agricultural practices, and other customs of the state. Hardcover. Read more »

The Story of the First Trans-Continental RailroadFREE: The Story of the First Trans-Continental Railroad

by William Francis Bailey

Although the Transcontinental Railroad did not pass through Kansas, it nevertheless had a profound impact on our state’s history. Variety of eBook formats. Read more »

Laura Ingalls Wilder Country: The People and Places Behind Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Life and Books

Laura Ingalls Wilder Country

by William Anderson

Facts and beautiful color photographs take you to each of the places Laura lived and give a glimpse of the true story behind the Little House series. Also included is information on the stories themselves and plenty of photos of both the Ingalls and the Wilder families. Paperback or hardcover. Read more »

The World of Little HouseThe World of Little House

by Carolyn Strom Collins and Christina Wyss Eriksson

After a brief history of the Little House series, subsequent chapters launch into the everyday life portrayed in each of the book. Along the way are activities and recipes so that children can try for themselves some of the things that Laura did. Paperback or hardcover. Read more »

Greenwood HotelFREE: “Greenwood Hotel”

by the Greenwood Preservation Society

The NRHP nomination accepted in 2006, along with more historical information and a detailed description of the building in the early phases of restoration. PDF.

FREE: “The History of Pudden Bridge”

The History of Pudden Bridge

by StoneArchBridges.com

Although the structure itself is quite familiar to Cowley bridge enthusiasts, Pudden Bridge’s history is surprisingly little known. PDF. Read more »

Farming the Dust Bowl

Farming the Dust Bowl

by Lawrence Svobida

The narrative of a young farmer grappling with dust and drought on a Meade County farm. Through his eyes we see the terrors of living in a world of whirling dust. Hardcover or paperback. Read more »