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Archive for Wednesday, January 30, 2008

8 Wonders of Kansas revealed

Lecompton’s Constitution Hall not on final list

January 30, 2008

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"8 wonders of Kansas" revealed

The state's birthday was made even more special today when Governor Sebelius announced which Kansas attractions made the "8 Wonders of Kansas." Enlarge video

Castle Rock, a limestone bluff left behind from a vast inland sea thousands of years ago, was named, along with Monument Rock, one of the "8 Wonders of Kansas" by 24,000 voters across the country. This limestone outcropping got its name from the similarities in appearance it has to that of an old English castle.

Castle Rock, a limestone bluff left behind from a vast inland sea thousands of years ago, was named, along with Monument Rock, one of the "8 Wonders of Kansas" by 24,000 voters across the country. This limestone outcropping got its name from the similarities in appearance it has to that of an old English castle.

The Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center in Hutchinson was voted one of the 8 Wonders of Kansas. Holding the largest collection of U.S. space artifacts outside of the Air and Space Museum, this Smithsonian affiliate also boasts the largest collection of Russian space artifacts in the Western world. The center's educational programs include Space Camp for young and old.

The Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center in Hutchinson was voted one of the 8 Wonders of Kansas. Holding the largest collection of U.S. space artifacts outside of the Air and Space Museum, this Smithsonian affiliate also boasts the largest collection of Russian space artifacts in the Western world. The center's educational programs include Space Camp for young and old.

— The "8 Wonders of Kansas" were announced Tuesday, and left off the list was a key site in both state and United States history.

Constitution Hall State Historic Site in Lecompton made the group of 24 finalists in the contest but not the final eight.

Paul Bahnmaier, president of the Lecompton Historical Society, said he was disappointed Constitution Hall didn't make the "8 Wonders" list but said all those that did were deserving.

"This is a great state with many places to go and see," Bahnmaier said.

The pro-slavery Lecompton Constitution drafted in Constitution Hall in 1857 ignited a political firestorm and pushed the country closer to the Civil War.

"The Civil War started here in Kansas," Bahnmaier said.

But on Tuesday, the winners of the "8 Wonders," based on a vote of more than 24,000 people from all 50 states, were:

¢ Big Well, Greensburg.

¢ Cheyenne Bottoms and Quivira National Wildlife Refuge, in Barton and Stafford counties.

¢ Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum, Abilene.

¢ Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center, Hutchinson.

¢ Kansas Underground Salt Museum, Hutchinson.

¢ Monument Rocks and Castle Rock, Gove County.

¢ St. Fidelis Catholic Church (Cathedral of the Plains), Victoria.

¢ Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve, Chase County.

The "8 Wonders of Kansas" contest was sponsored by the Kansas Sampler Foundation, a nonprofit whose mission is to preserve and sustain rural culture. Gov. Kathleen Sebelius announced the winners before several hundred fourth- and fifth-graders at the Capitol for Kansas Day events.

Marci Penner, director of the foundation, said the chosen sites are unique to Kansas.

"We'd love it if the fun of the contest would launch a wave of exploring Kansas," she said.

Penner declined to divulge the rank of the "8 Wonders" by vote totals, saying that would detract from the purpose of the contest.

Tim Rues, administrator of the Constitution Hall site, said the publicity from being among the 24 finalists has been good for Lecompton.

"I personally feel very honored that Constitution Hall was in the top 24, and I hope that translates into more people discovering Kansas history," he said.

Other finalists included the Arikaree Breaks, Cheyenne County; Ball of Twine, Cawker City; Big Brutus, West Mineral; Brookville Hotel, Abilene; Chase County Courthouse, Cottonwood Falls; Cimarron National Grassland, Morton County; John Steuart Curry Murals in the Capitol, Topeka; Davis Memorial, Hiawatha; Fort Larned National Historic Site, Pawnee County; Garden of Eden, Lucas; Gypsum Hills Scenic Drive, Barber Country; Keeper of the Plains, Wichita; Lake Scott State Park, Scott County; Pawnee Indian Museum State Historic Site, Republic County; and St. Mary's Catholic Church, St. Benedict.

Comments

lounger 6 years, 2 months ago

The Tallgrass prairie in Wabunsee county is the prettiest part of Kansas-Period!!!

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BigPrune 6 years, 2 months ago

The biggest ball of twine didn't make the list? I thought the Greensburg Big Well got destroyed by the tornado. How come Cabella's didn't make the list? It is the largest tourist attraction in the state.

Great Pyramid of Giza.....Kansas equivalent =Castle Rock The Roman Coliseum.....Kansas equivalent =Cosmosphere Great Wall of China....Kansas equivalent=Salt Museum

.....need I go on? This state is making me sleepy.

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joshos 6 years, 2 months ago

Number 9: World's Largest Football Coach in Lawrence.

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Staci Dark Simpson 6 years, 2 months ago

Confrontation- Its called heritage. Those of us from Lecompton are proud of its history, not because of the hatred but because of its significance in the history books. Visit Lane Museum lots of cool stuff there, and some of it belonged to my family members. Constitution Hall is a neat place too. A good town for history buffs.

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jrlii 6 years, 2 months ago

A big problem with Lawrence as a historic site is the lack of surviving territorial architecture: Pretty much what Quantrill didn't burn down has been torn down in subsequent generations.

I suppose a basketball fan might hallucinate that Allen Field house might somehow qualify as a historic site, but. . .

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Confrontation 6 years, 2 months ago

Gee, it's just so sad that a place where a pro-slavery constitution was developed wouldn't get a place on the list. Lecompton takes too much pride in such an ugly past.

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mmiller 6 years, 2 months ago

I think Lecompton should have been listed. It was the territorial capital of Kansas!! There's so much history there! The monument rocks are so cool. A lot of beauty out in that part of the state!

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Tanetti 6 years, 2 months ago

"No Big Brutus? No Garden of Eden? Whoever voted on this should be forced to renounce their claim to being Kansans!"


Yeah, I thought the same thing until I read the ENTIRE ARTICLE. You might take a gander at the paragraph that says, "Other finalists included: ..."

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autie 6 years, 2 months ago

and how about the wonderment in Topeka? The Phred Phelps Westboro compound. A monument to hate and intolerance.

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CrystalKU 6 years, 2 months ago

With as much history that Lawrence has, I am suprised that nothing was included, even on the finalists list.

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janeyb 6 years, 2 months ago

I prefer nature's wonders to manmade wonders. I do remember 10-12 years ago we had to step carefully around Castle Rock and Monument Rocks because we saw two rattle snakes. We had fun at Rock City in the Salina area though. Those were just places where my parents would stop and let us run off some energy going to or from places like Yellowstone, Arches, Glacier etc.

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allateup 6 years, 2 months ago

scary_manilow (Anonymous) says:

"No Big Brutus? No Garden of Eden? Whoever voted on this should be forced to renounce their claim to being Kansans!"

There was a website and anyone could vote for these.

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scary_manilow 6 years, 2 months ago

No Big Brutus? No Garden of Eden? Whoever voted on this should be forced to renounce their claim to being Kansans!

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