Lost Kansas Communities is an innovative digital project dedicated to preserving the memory of Kansas’s lost and disappearing locales. Kansas State students—more than 500 at last count—perform primary research by combing archives, creating maps, and documenting oral histories. The best final projects are published on the project’s digital archive, which is publicly accessible. Initially funded by an NEH grant in 2008, Lost Kansas Communities has since taken on a life of its own and become a major program of the Chapman Center for Rural Studies. The project has driven the creation of the Bruntzel Award for excellence in local history, partnerships with local agencies, a major exhibition at the Flint Hills Discovery Center, and many, many donations, including a $3 million bequest given by the Center’s initial donor, Mark Chapman.
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