Started the day in Kansas City, Missouri and ended it in Colorado Springs, Colorado. This is quite a long way.
We started the day at the National World War 1 Museum. This is the only World War One museum in America. It does the best job of summarising the causes for the war in a 12 minute introductory film that I have seen. The museum is in several sections, with the first explaining the first years of the war, prior to US engagement. This section does an excellent job of explaining all of the players in the role and their roles. The second section covers the period from America entering the war to its conclusion.
The museum is very even handed. It clearly explains all of the aspects of the war and does not over emphasise the American contribution. The museum also clearly presents the stupidity of the war and the ultimate ineffectiveness of the Treaty of Versailles and how this ultimately lead to the Second World War.
The story of World War One is very difficult to tell. There was no one cause, in fact there were many causes, there was no clear bad guy and the warfare itself was horrendous. The fronts barely moved for years on end and no-one really won. It is understandable why this war is not often studied and does not have the “profile” of World War Two. It is very important, however that we learn lessons from this war to help us avoid future conflict.
After leaving the museum we started travelling to Colorado and discovered that we have entered the area of the roadside attraction. Lots of signs directing you down one highway exit or another for family fun.
We found a sign directing us to Wamego, Kansas. This has become the centre for Oz in Kansas. I’m in completely sure why. So we visited the Museum of Oz which is actually pretty good. They have some life size models of the characters and quite a lot of memorabilia from both the movie and books. We also stopped off at the yellow brick road.
While in the museum we found out that the Colombian theatre in Wamego, Kansas has the largest collection of art in America from the 1893 Columbian exposition, so we popped in there to see 6 huge paintings taken from the Government building at the fair. The theatre has these pieces because L Frank Baum based the emerald city on the white city (which is what the exposition was known as).
Also saw a google car today.