Pub. date: 2008 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963954 | Print ISBN: 9781412959087 | Online ISBN: 9781412963954| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
KANSAS BECAME THE 34th state of the United States in 1861 and occupies the exact center of the landmass of the continental United States. It has a total area of just over 82,000 square miles and is bordered by Nebraska, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Colorado. The capital city is Topeka, although both Wichita and Kansas City are now larger and more populous urban areas. The total population of the state is more than two and a half million. The name Kansas derives from the name of the Native Americans who were previously in occupation of the land. A number of Native Americans were relocated to what is now Kansas when settlers elsewhere wished to acquire the land on which they lived. For a period, Kansas, together with Nebraska, was intended to be a form of large—scale Indian reservation, but Kansas ...