An Era of Rights: Kansas City’s Struggle for Equality, 1950-1980Kansas City Public Library
- Jason Roe, Digital History Specialist, Kansas City Public Library
- David LaCrone, Digital Branch Manager, Kansas City Public Library
- Katie Sowder, Digital History Collections Librarian, Kansas City Public Library
We are beginning a digital history project that will document and analyze the major events and themes of the Civil Rights struggle in Kansas City. It is modeled after two multiple award-winning websites: The Pendergast Years: Kansas City in the Jazz Age and Great Depression and the Civil War on the Western Border: The Missouri Kansas Conflict, 1854-1865. The Civil Rights website will take a broad view of the era, encompassing the fight for justice and equality by African Americans, Women, Latino/a/x, LGBTQ, disabled persons, and more. During the Civil Rights era, residents of Kansas City grappled with its long history of segregation and discrimination against minority groups, and made notable progress in some areas, but never fully expanded opportunities or healed existing fissures. The website will feature original scholarship commissioned by the library and a collection of digitized primary source materials, including photographs, correspondence, oral histories, postcards, and audio/visual recordings from regional cultural heritage organizations, including the library’s Missouri Valley Special Collections. Maps, multimedia, and other features will further enhance the learning experience.
Digital History Specialist, Kansas City Public Library
Jason Roe is a digital history specialist at the Kansas City Public Library. He is content manager and editor for the award-winning websites, The Pendergast Years: Kansas City in the Jazz Age and Great Depression and Civil War on the Western Border: The Missouri-Kansas Conflict, 1854-1865. He is also co-editor of the book, Wide-Open Town: Kansas City in the Pendergast Era (University Press of Kansas, 2018). Prior to joining the Library, he earned his PhD in American History, African American History, and Medical History from the University of Kansas (May 2012).
Digital Branch Manager, Kansas City Public Library
David LaCrone is the Digital Branch Manager at Kansas City (MO) Public Library where he coordinates digital platforms and services for patrons and staff. He oversees web development, digitization, end-user support and third-party integrations for most of the Library’s digital outlets. He holds an MSI from the University of Michigan School of Information and a BA from Oberlin College.
Digital History Collections Librarian, Kansas City Public Library
Katie Sowder is the Digital History Collections Librarian at the Kansas City (MO) Public Library. She works with the library’s Digital Branch and Missouri Valley Special Collections to digitize archival collections and create and maintain metadata for the library’s digital history projects, including The Pendergast Years and the 1940 Tax Assessment Photograph Collection. She received an MLIS from the University of Missouri School of Information Science & Learning Technologies and a BA from DePaul University.