Academic Historian

Dr. Steve Collins is now retired from a 34 year full-time career teaching sociology at Kansas City Kansas Community College and now continues as adjunct instructor at that institution. He is the recipient of the Carnegie Foundation Kansas Professor of the Year Award for 1998, is a past president of the Kansas Sociology Society, and former coordinator of the Sociology Department at Kansas City Kansas Community College.  Dr. Collins has directed service learning and academic research projects in New Mexico, Kansas, and Italy, and for four years represented the college as project manager for the National Park Service “Save America’s Treasures Grant” to preserve the Quindaro Ruins in Wyandotte County, Kansas.  Dr. Collins continues to research the role of Quindaro during the border war period in Territorial Kansas.

Quindaro, Kansas Territory (1857-1862)

Quindaro was an abolitionist town on the border between the slave state of Missouri and free state settlers in Territorial Kansas.  By its existence, Quindaro undermined the attempted blockade of the Missouri River by proslavery advocates against additional free state supporters flowing into Kansas.   Quindaro … Read MoreQuindaro, Kansas Territory (1857-1862)

Western University (1857-1943)

Western University was the first African American University in Kansas.  The school originated by the work of Presbyterian minister Eben Blatchly, who began educating free blacks in the Territorial Kansas Town of Quindaro in 1857. After the Civil War, Blatchly expanded his school, calling it … Read MoreWestern University (1857-1943)