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How to Explore Kansas City History

Did you know that Kansas City was founded in the 1800s as a part of the growing fur trade? A city that’s been around for that long definitely has some exciting stories to tell. Learn how to explore Kansas City history to discover more about the “Heart of America.”

There’s a World of Historical Research Resources at Your Fingertips

Kansas City was founded in 1838, but that’s only the beginning. Whether you’re an amateur history buff or simply appreciate a good story, you can have a lot of fun exploring the history of Kansas City. The city is an essential figure in several chapters of American history, including the prevalence of jazz music and the Civil War. Keep reading to discover how to explore Kansas City history from a few different perspectives.

Kansas City Museum

Do you want “the whole story” of Kansas City? Be sure to start your research at the Kansas City Museum. This museum focuses on sharing complete stories about the history of our favorite city, making connections between the events of the past and Kansas City’s present. With a bustling programming calendar ranging from movie screenings to culinary events, there’s always a new way to learn about Kansas City and have fun. There’s even a virtual tour if you can’t make it in person!

Historic Garment District Museum

Did you know that after World War I, Kansas City was home to one of the nation’s largest and most essential garment factories? If you’re interested in the history of clothing, you won’t want to miss the Historic Garment District Museum. Check out an award-winning textiles and fashion memorabilia collection, and learn how fashion influenced Kansas City commerce’s growth.

American Jazz Museum

The connection between Kansas City and jazz is well-known, so it may not be a surprise to you that Kansas City is the home of the American Jazz Museum. If you don’t know much about jazz music, this museum is the perfect place to explore this unique American art form. Check out an exhibit that highlights the impact of jazz on Kansas City culture, or swing by the Blue Room for free live music that brings jazz history to life.

Historic Kansas City

If you love admiring historic buildings, look no further than Historic Kansas City. This independent nonprofit focuses on Kansas City’s most beloved historical landmarks and is a great place to learn about historic architecture. Learn about the city’s origins and the events that shaped it, then treat yourself to a walking tour of a preserved site like the Country Club Plaza. It’s a great way to get to know the city on foot.

The Negro Leagues Baseball Museum

For baseball fans, the story of the Negro Leagues is an essential piece of sports history. In 1920, African American baseball players in Missouri and other midwestern states organized to challenge the segregation that kept them out of professional baseball leagues. The Negro Leagues Baseball Museum shares the story of the African American pioneers who led the fight and also illustrates the importance of baseball to African American communities in Kansas City. It’s a must-visit for those curious about African American history and culture, as well as anyone who enjoys a good ballgame.


Now that you know how to explore Kansas City history, plan to visit one of these places soon and begin your journey. You never know what kind of fascinating stories you’ll discover!

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