Situated in the heart of the Great Plains, Wichita has been a city of energy and change. The Great Depression and World War II brought both challenges and opportunities. During the postwar years, commercial and business activities downtown thrived, while shopping malls and drive-ins appeared in new suburbs. Meanwhile, African Americans, countercultural figures, and other groups struggled to reshape local affairs. Urban renewal transformed whole sections of the city, while redevelopment brought new life into older structures. Events such as Riverfest and a host of museums have improved the quality of life. A strong entrepreneurial tradition has remained, and populations from Asia and Latin America have brought new perspectives. Aviation has remained the economy's heart, although health care, higher education, and other ventures have made their mark as well. Through it all, the rhythms of everyday life have continued, creating a vibrant, complex community facing the dawn of the 21st century.
Author: Professor of History Jay M Price
128 pages, paperback, ⓒ2013