Skew-T Meteorologist in Kansas City

Filed under Kansas City

Town of Barry

Map of the Town of Barry in 1877
Map of the Town of Barry in 1877

The area about a mile south of my home in northern Kansas City, on the other side of Highway 152, was once the town of Barry, now remembered by the major east-west thoroughfare having been renamed Barry Road. Founded in 1829 the frontier town was named for the then US Postmaster General.

Peter Hardeman Burnett, Barry resident and governor of California
Peter Hardeman Burnett, Barry resident and governor of California

There were a few buildings constructed as early as 1822, 14 years prior to the area immediately to the west being acquired by the United States in the Platte Purchase. The most well known settler from Barry was Peter Hardeman Burnett.

Burnett had little formal education and taught himself law and government, owning the general store before begin a career in law that included defending Joseph Smith. Burnett argued for a change of venue, during which Smith and his companions escaped and made their way to Illinois. Moving west in the 1840s Burnett was a state legislator in Oregon, where he helped pass African-American exclusion laws. During the California Gold Rush he moved to California, met the son of gold discoverer John Sutter, and was quickly employed selling land in the new city of Sacramento. He went on to be the first civilian governor of California, establishing cabinet posts and appointing senators for the new state, and saw most of his exclusion and anti-immigration legislative efforts fail.

Plaque on the 152 Trail
Plaque on the 152 Trail

Nothing noticeable remains of Barry beyond the basic road layout. Road widening in the 1980s removed whatever was left of the town. The rural two lane Barry and Baugham Streets were replaced by five and four lane boulevards. Old Stagecoach Road is still fairly narrow leading into a residential development, nearly hidden from the large intersection.

Intersection of Barry Road and Platte Purchase Drive today
Intersection of Barry Road and Platte Purchase Drive today

Wallace State Park

Lake Allaman
Lake Allaman

Wallace State Park was created in 1932 when citizens convinced the Missouri state government to purchase the 121 acres of land, who named the park after the previous landholders. The Works Progress Administration performed much of the initial development. It's about a 45 minute drive outside of Kansas City, on Interstate 35, near Cameron and I think perhaps the second or third closest state park to the metro. Some of the natural wooded landscape has been preserved, though neighboring roads are apparent through bare spring trees and farm ponds and the artificial lake reveal 20th century development of this area.

GPS track of hiking though the park. Background map OSM contributors.
GPS track of hiking though the park. Background map OSM contributors.

Shoal Creek Living History Museum

Remains of Stollings House
Remains of Stollings House

Shoal Creek Living History Museum is a humble, admission-free nearby park featuring 19th century Missouri buildings. The 1885 Stollings House recently burned to the ground.

Buffalo at Shoal Creek
Buffalo at Shoal Creek

12th and Vine

Sign at the famous corner
Sign at the famous corner

The intersection referenced by Lieber and Stoller's classic 1952 song Kansas City is no longer even an intersection, the area having been razed in the 1960s to make way for public housing. An ornamental sign post and a faded informational display are all that are left. 18th and Vine, on the other side of interstate 70, remains.

EV Parking

Electric Vehicles Only
Electric Vehicles Only

A fairly common occurrence around Kansas City.