Soul Of America





Buck O'Neil of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum; Kansas City



Kansas City has more freeway miles per thousand residents than Los Angeles.

Kansas City Missouri is larger than Kansas City, Kansas and downtown for the region is in Kansas City, Missouri.

The Kansas City Metro Area has 2 million people spread over 4,777 square miles.

African Americans number 230,000 in the metro area and own an estimated 4,000 Black businesses.

Kansas City is only 250 miles from the geographic center of the lower 48 states.  Nearly every American city is reachable by plane within 2.5 hours. It is also a favorite for truckers due to its central location and abundance of freeways.

Kansas City is a center for financial services, warehousing, manufacturing, distribution communications, health care, law, education and government.

Kansas City has frequently been named in business publications as best place to start a business.

Several major companies got their start here including the Pony Express, Commerce Bancshares, H&R Block, Russell Stover Candies, American Century Companies, and Hallmark Cards.


Native and immigrant African American residents of greater Kansas City, who have made a huge mark on the world or their region:

Charlie "Bird" Parker
Legendary jazz saxophonist

Satchel Paige
Mr Negro Leagues Baseball and showman

Buck Leonard
One of the greatest hitters in baseball history

Buck O'Neil
Negro leagues baseball star and manager

Oleta Adams

Jazz vocalist

Maurice Green
Track star and one-time world's fastest sprinter

Mary Lou Williams
Blues singer

Count Basie
Jazz bandleader

Bennie Moten
Early Swing and Jazz bandleader

George Lee
Early Swing and Jazz bandleader

Julia Lee
Jazz pianist

John Brown

Gave his live to end slavery

Lester Young
Early jazz musician

Jay McShann
Jazz bandleader for a young Charlie Parker

Jimmy Rushing
Jazz vocalist

Joe Turner
Jazz vocalist

Rev. Emanuel Cleaver, II
First Black mayor of Kansas City

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