HPPR Arts, Culture & History

History:
prehistory
Native American history
early exploration
trails and railroads
homesteading
community settlement
farming & farm life
Dust Bowl era
ghost towns
personal remembrances & biographies

Culture:
ethnic groups
religion
language
cuisine
traditions
values
folklore
myths
humor

Arts:
literature
folk art
visual arts
music
theatre
events & festivals

This Lamar Town

May 21, 2015
Russ Baldwin / The Prowers Journal

Pick a highway.. any highway… here on the high plains… as you pass through small towns there are skeletons standing on main street, reminding you of another time, when the bare buildings were bustling business, the quiet streets were full of cars, there wasn’t a parking place to be found, and the sidewalks were brimming with people. 

One Lamar, Colorado resident shares a poem of longing for those days and hoping they return.  

pphm.org

American artist George Catlin (1796–1872) journeyed west five times in the 1830s, traversing the Great Plains where he visited and painted more than 140 American Indian tribes. The exhibition “George Catlin’s American Buffalo” presents 40 original Catlin paintings from the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s collection to show the crucial role of the buffalo in Plains Indian culture. Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum will host the Smithsonian American Art Museum Touring Exhibition “George Catlin’s American Buffalo” May 30- Aug 30, 2015 in the Foran Family Galleries.

The Gourd People

May 20, 2015
Skip Mancini

A trip to the San Francisco Flower and Garden Show brought me face to face with a family of gourds that were watching me as I was watching them.  This whimsical art form has been mastered by a garden artist named Betty Finch, and she does wonderful things with gourds big and small.  Don't miss the slide show!

Here's a link to Betty's website: finchgourd.com  

If you’re a fan of Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys, The Oklahoma Historical Society just released a compilation of rediscovered songs from the personal transcriptions of Bob Wills. The original recordings were included in the Wills Family donation of Bob Will’s personal items. About 130 recordings of radio broadcast from the 1940s were discovered in the collection. The audio was deteriorating because they were only meant to be played a limited number of times. The work was restored and remastered. The initial run is 1,000 records pressed on 180-gram vinyl. The album features songs once thought lost to time, dust, heat and mold from one of Oklahoma’s biggest musical icons. The effort is part of OHS’s effort to tell more Oklahoma history through music, film, radio, television, literature, theater, and more.

The second to last Saturday in May people who were held at Camp Amache journey to the detention center in southeastern Colorado. The come to share what they remember about their time behind the barbed wire. Previously, busloads of former detainees have attended. This year there were only two who could make the trek- Bob Fuchagami, age 85, and Jane Okubo who was born at the camp. Fuchagami was 12 years old when his family of 10, were taken from their walnut and peach tree farm outside Yuba City, California to take up residence in two rooms in 7G. He says it wasn’t freedom to be swept up and have two suitcases of stuff, go to an area you’ve never known before with sandstorms coming through the cracks. There’s almost nothing left of the camp. A handful of buildings, shattered porcelain, exposed rebar, concrete slabs, an occasional ribbon of barbed wire, and very few survivors. Survivors say as they age and their peers die, their experiences are falling deeper and deeper into the footnotes of history.

icancookthat.org

Cindee called me asking how to use up the frozen venison in her freezer.  I had a solution she hadn't thought of.  As a matter of fact, I made some BBQ venison in my smoker over the weekend, and here's how I cook it.

HPPR's Songwriters in the Round series continues on Friday, May 15!  This show will be at The Fibonacci, located at 3306 SW 6th Ave, the home base of Chamber Music Amarillo.  The doors will open at 7:00, and the show will start at 7:30.  To make a reservation for this show, give us a call at 806-367-9088 or send an e-mail to music@hppr.org.  We will have the usual great coffee from the good folks at Evocation Coffee Roasters, cookies from Kristy Fuller and a great evening of original music.  Don't miss it!

About the Artists

Rick Branigan

peeksintojoyce.blogspot.com

 Remember the childhood story about the country mouse and the city mouse? I loved to read that book as a little girl. Why it appealed to me, I don’t know. However, since late this summer my daughters and I have had the opportunity see observe the differences between country cats and town cats.

Survey says…. most Kansas voters believe it’s wrong to discriminate against gay and transgender people, but they also value religious faith.  A recent survey by the Docking Institute of Public Affairs at Fort Hays State University reveals Kansans also reject attempts by some to push their beliefs onto others.

According to a press release from FHSU:

Dr. Chapman Rackaway, a Docking Fellow and an FHSU professor of political science, found that Kansans are largely divided on support for gay marriage, civil unions or neither.

Kudos for Pluto

Apr 10, 2015
Kansas Public Radio

Pluto has taken on new prominence this year in the northern Arizona city where it was discovered.  Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff has dedicated 2015 to celebrating one of its most popular attractions and the amateur astronomer who spotted it 85 years ago. 

There's a little place in the Texas Panhandle that was just named one of the 17 Texas barbecue joints you need to try before you die- Mike's BBQ Haven in Amarillo.

  We here at HPPR love having guests in our studios.  This morning Maxwell Hughes and Edison stopped by to talk about their show tonight in Amarillo, and to play a couple of tunes for us. They are slowly working their way back home to Colorado after SXSW; you can catch them tonight-4/1 at the 806 Coffeehouse at 2812 SW 6th Ave in Amarillo.  There is no cover charge and the show starts at 9pm.  Listen to the entire interview below.

When you think of Bonnie and Clyde, does southwestern Kansas ever cross your mind? The couple actually lived in Hugoton for several months using the aliases of Blackie and Jewell Underwood reports Kathy Hanks for the Hutchinson News. The two came to town in an old Model A drawn to the area because of the flourishing gas industry. Hugoton was a mecca in a time when the rest of the country was in the depths of the Great Depression.

Jay Ricci / amarillo.com

Have you noticed the two cement towers a few miles east of Amarillo and ever wondered… what in the world? 

The pair are remaining sentinels of the Amarillo Air Force Base writes Jay Ricci for the Amarillo Globe News. 

The military men and women and most of the buildings are gone.  What remains are rusted-out pieces of metal, sidewalks leading nowhere, lonely street signs at intersections with no traffic, and the two rusty water towers.

Attendees might have come to the 13th annual High Plains Snow Goose Festival expecting good food, music, and a chance to see thousands of migrating Canadian and Snow geese, but this year they got even more: a dust storm complete with tumbleweeds; snow cancellations; encounters with elk, road runners, big horn sheep; and petroglyphs in Picture and Carrizo Canyons.

All my married life, I’ve loved attending local auctions.  Part of the charm of these gatherings is seeing friends and neighbors and catching up with one another’s busy lives or listening to the auctioneer’s clever patter.  Another reason these events draw me  is the chance to see history and sometimes buy a little chunk of someone else’s story.  Unfortunately, there comes a time when those little pieces of other’s lives add up to enough stuff to clutter my closets to overflowing.  Before anything bursts, I need to take action.

Jeff Bell

When our land is not covered with a brief blanket of white, “this is the time of the year when the grass is a dormant shade of brown and trees are denuded of leaves,” says Jeff Bell. 

Bell is a travel blogger.  His website is called Planet Bell

He usually leaves his camera in the case when he goes home to western Oklahoma.  But, this year he made an effort to get out and take photos, trying to see the land in a new light. 

The results are stunning.

Josh Davis / rollingstone.com

Sometimes you’ve got to leave home… to see home.  That’s how Rolling Stone says it was for Ryan Culwell. 

Rolling Stone’s Andrew Leahey writes:

MIKE GUNNOE / THE CAPITAL-JOURNAL

Longtime University of Kansas professor and artist Elden Tefft passed away last week at the age of 95.

He leaves behind an important legacy. 

Elden Tefft is probably best known for his bronze sculpture of Moses that sits on KU’s campus. But in the art world, Tefft was a giant. He created the first non-commercial bronze foundry in the United States on KU’s campus, which led to a boom in the craft.

John Hachmeister is a sculpture professor at KU. He came there first as a student in 1969 and spent many years working with Tefft.

Kristy Fuller

Chalice Abbey in Amarillo was THE place place to be last Saturday night! It was the first time HPPR has utilized this beautiful venue-many thanks to Paul Carruth for allowing us to use it! The current art exhibit features the work of Jim Livingston, who donated a great print that we gave away to an audience member.

bearlyvisible.net

Keeping it all in the family, Skip takes a short trip back in time and learns how to keep her mother's violets alive.  And in doing so she develops her own keepsakes for the future.

nbcnews.com

Colorado veterinarians are warning pet owners that the number of dogs accidentally eating pot products is on the rise reports Vermont Public Radio.

Apryl Steele is the past president of the Colorado Veterinary Medical Association.  She says since pot became legal in Colorado, they’ve seen a four-fold increase in the number of dogs treated for accidentally ingesting it.  Steele says THC is much more toxic to dogs who don’t understand the concept of eating just a little. 

Lost Home Movie Footage of Selma March Discovered

Feb 10, 2015
texasarchive.org/

In the summer of 2014, the Texas Archive of the Moving Image (TAMI) went to Amarillo to collect Texas-related films and videos from the Panhandle community for our free digitization program.  One donor, Joe Jeoffrey, brought in a large collection of 16 millimeter family films from the 1960s. While we are always excited by 16mm film, which produces a sharp, dynamic image, we were especially enthusiastic to receive this collection after Jeoffrey disclosed that one reel might contain his father's footage of the Selma march.

Liberty Theater (Amarillo Downtown, Inc.) / myhighplains.com

The Liberty Theater could be getting a chance at a second life reports Channel Four News in Amarillo. 

The historic theater was built in 1921.  It was the only place African-Americans were welcome.

It’s been vacant for years, but a group of people are working to redevelop the building into a place for artists to perform.

ninetyone.canby.k12.or.us

Kansas is at the bottom of the barrel when it comes to kids taking advantage of the Summer Food Service Program.  Only 7 percent of eligible children participate.  That’s the lowest in the nation reports the Hays Daily News.

One reason for dismal participation rates in a state where one out of every four children live in poverty could be the lack of serving sites. 

The Kansas State Department of Education reports there are 40 counties statewide with no serving site.  The only counties in northwest Kansas with summer programs are Ellis, Russell, and Smith counties. 

endorevblog.com

Fans of the Pulitzer Prize winning “To Kill a Mockingbird” know Harper Lee is planning to release an unexpected sequel to the famous story later this year.  But, you may not know the private author has ties to the Sunflower State reports KSN.

Before she was internationally recognized for “To Kill a Mockingbird”, Harper Lee spent some time in Garden City working on another famous book.

Laurie Oshel is the assistant director of Finney County Historical Society.  She says, “Lee came to Garden City in late 1959, early 1960 with Truman Capote.”

coloradopreservation.org/

2016 is the centennial year of the National Park Service.  President Obama’s budget request for the coming year includes $3 billion for the bureau’s critical conservation, preservation, and recreation mission reports the Lamar Ledger.  That’s a boost of almost $433 million.

The national parks in southeastern Colorado plan on using the increase to add seasonal park rangers, deliver more educational programs, and address maintenance backlogs.

Alexa Roberts is the superintendent of Bent’s Old Fort and Sand Creek Massacre National Historic sites.  She says the President’s budget highlights the importance of investing in a historic effort to attract and host more visitors.  It also helps leverage additional private philanthropy for the parks. 

pintrest.com

A look at the history and development of one of the largest plant groupings in the world.  As with many other life forms, these fragile tropical plants are facing a questionable future in the wild, which makes their development in botanical gardens, protected areas, and commercial outlets all the more valuable.

theguardian.com

Watching how much my toddler granddaughter loves books reminds me of a seven-year-old,  toothpick-legged child who thought she was a big girl when her momma handed her anallowance on Saturday mornings. Along with that shiny dime, that little girl’s mother permitted her to trek uptown-- first to the dime store and then to the library. The coin was spent in no time.  It took much longer to wander up and down the bookshelf aisles searching for the perfect three or four titles to carry home so she could escape into those well-turned pages for a week of exciting adventure.

texastribune.org

Despite concerns that the undocumented immigrant population in Texas is growing, it’s remained stable in recent years reports the Texas Tribune. 

In fact, more than half of the state’s undocumented immigrants have lived in Texas for more than 10 years according to data from the Migration Policy Institute.

Texas has the second-largest undocumented immigrant population in the country—about 1.5 million people.  California has about twice as many.

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