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US State
NicknameThe Sunflower State (official);
The Wheat State
MottoAd astra per aspera
Official languagesEnglish
Largest cityWichita
Largest metro areaKansas portion of Kansas City, MO-KS Metro Area
Area Ranked15th
Total82277 sq mi 213096 km2
Width417 mi 645 km
Length211 mi 340 km
% water0.56
Pop. Rank33rd
Total2,853,116 (2010 Census)
Density34.9 /sq mi 12.7 /km2
Median income$50,177 (25th)
Highest pointMount Sunflower
4039 ft 1232 m
Mean2000 ft 600 m
Lowest pointVerdigris River
679 ft 207 m
Other information
Admission to UnionJanuary 29, 1861 (34th)
GovernorSam Brownback (R)
Lieutenant GovernorJeff Colyer (R)
LegislatureKansas Legislature
Upper houseSenate
Lower houseHouse of Representatives
U.S. SenatorsPat Roberts (R)
Jerry Moran (R)
U.S. House delegationTim Huelskamp (R)
Lynn Jenkins (R)
Kevin Yoder (R)
Mike Pompeo (R)
- most of state - Central: UTC-6/-5
- 4 western counties - Mountain: UTC-7/-6
Time zoneCentral: UTC-6/-5

     Home | State | Kansas

Kansas c-enaudio=en-us-Kansas.oggˈkænzəs is a US state located in the Midwestern United States. It is named after the Kansas River which flows through it, which in turn was named after the Kansa Native American tribe, which inhabited the area. The tribe's name (natively kką:ze) is often said to mean "people of the wind" or "people of the south wind," although this was probably not the term's original meaning. Residents of Kansas are called "Kansans."

For thousands of years what is now Kansas was home to numerous and diverse Native American tribes. Tribes in the Eastern part of the state generally lived in villages along the river valleys. Tribes in the Western part of the state were semi-nomadic and hunted large herds of bison. Kansas was first settled by European Americans in the 1830s, but the pace of settlement accelerated in the 1850s, in the midst of political wars over the slavery issue. When officially opened to settlement by the U.S. government in 1854, abolitionist Free-Staters from New England and pro-slavery settlers from neighboring Missouri rushed to the territory to determine if Kansas would become a free state or a slave state. Thus, the area was a hotbed of violence and chaos in its early days as these forces collided, and was known as Bleeding Kansas. The abolitionists eventually prevailed and on January 29, 1861, Kansas entered the Union as a free state. After the Civil War, the population of Kansas grew rapidly, when waves of immigrants turned the prairie into farmland. Today, Kansas is one of the most productive agricultural states, producing high yields of wheat, sorghum and sunflowers.

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