As mentioned in last months newsletter, we
didn't expect Kathy's on camera interview about the Bloody Benders to air
on the ID channel until later this year, but it turns out Kathy makes her
appearance on "Evil Kin" next Tuesday, August 12, at 8pm Central on
The story of the Bloody Benders is
intriguing enough that Kansas may be the only place where mass
murderer's are noted with a state historical marker. Be sure to read
our in-depth article on the Benders (featured below) and check out Kathy's television debut
Tuesday August 12, 8pm. Here's a clip from the show to set the
If the video above doesn't work, or doesn't
appear, try this
To say we're excited is an understatement,
and I personally think Kathy did a great job. Of course, I could be
want to thank everyone for their incredible support on our DVD debut in Ghost
Towns (America's Lost World) 2 Disc DVD. We've had some great
feedback to this 5 hour plus Documentary from award winning Centre
Communications, and are proud to be a part of the project. If you
love ghost towns, you can still take advantage of our newsletter special
and save 20% on the DVD through the end of the month.
Just use coupon code NEWS after adding
it to your cart.
We were thinking
about taking off on our 6 week adventure north late this week, but now we
plan to hang back a few extra days to catch Kathy's TV appearance. We hope
you join us on our journey through parts of Iowa, Wisconsin, Michigan,
Ohio and maybe more (see our projected path below). We'll keep you posted through our
Twitter posts, and of course new stories here on the main website.
Hope to be on the road late next week.
In the meantime I'm in negotiations to be
Kathy's talent agent, but at the moment she says I need to stick to my day
Dave Alexander - Trailer puller, Dog
wrangler, and soon to be "figuring out how to get all that stuff on the
In this Edition:
New Additions and Featured
The Bloody Benders of Labette County
Feedback and Suggestions
More to See:
Legends General Store - Supporting our
website since 2003
Legends Photo Prints - Our growing
gallery of Vintage and Modern images available in various print sizes.
Shop, or just enjoy browsing.
Legends Travel Blog - Follow us on our travels and catch special
Legends Facebook Page - Daily posts of all things American History.
Ghost Towns of the American West Facebook
Page - Occasional posts of all things Ghost Towns.
Native American History Facebook Page - Occasional posts of all
things Native American
Legends' Photo Prints Facebook
Store Facebook Page
Legends on Twitter
Legends on Pinterest
Legends of Kansas - Our website
dedicated to the state Legends was born in.
New Additions and Featured Stories
Kathy's been digging into the early 1900's,
and the Women's movement through 19th and 20th Century America. In
the process she's ran across quite a bit of "division" in our nation that
makes today's political climate pale in comparison. Check out these latest
- United States Year in Review - World War I was over and most Americans
were eager for peace and security; but, 1919 would prove to be anything
but. We take a look at the turmoil from race riots and strikes to
anarchist bombings and the flu in this 1919 year in review.
Anarchist Bombings - In 1919, the United States saw violent anarchists
target political leaders, law enforcement and others through a series of
bombings in several cities.
Suffrage in the United States - Women's suffrage is the right of women to
vote and to stand for electoral office. Limited voting rights were gained by
women in some western U.S. states in the late 19th century.
Suffrage Parade of 1913 - When Alice Paul and Lucy Burns returned to the United States
after working with the radical wing of the British suffrage movement, they
sought to infuse the lethargic American campaign with techniques and strategies
that had proven successful across the ocean. Their first activity was mobilizing
5,000 women for a massive suffrage parade on the eve of President-elect Woodrow
Women on the
Move: Overland Journeys to California -
Contrasting the experiences of various women who left their homes to put
down roots in California during the last quarter of the 18th century to the mid
19th century. Includes women who were part of Spanish explorer, Juan Bautista de
Anza's overland expeditions in 1774-75 from what is now Mexico to the San
Francisco Bay area; women who lived in
when it was under Spanish (1769-1821) and Mexican (1822-46) control; and
women who were drawn to the area following the discovery of gold in 1848.
in America -
During the 18th and 19th centuries there were hundreds of communal
utopian experiments in the United States. The
Shakers alone founded around 20
settlements. While great differences existed between the various utopian
communities or colonies, each society shared a common bond in a vision of
communal living in a utopian society.
For more What's New on Legends of America click
Old West Wisdom
Polishing your pants on saddle leather don't make you a rider.
Life is simpler
when you plough around the stump.
Don't worry about
bitin' off more'n you can chew; your mouth is probably a whole lot
bigger'n you think.
Always take a good
look at what you're about to eat. It's not so important to know what
it is, but it's good to know what it was.
After eating an
entire bull, a mountain lion felt so good he started roaring. He kept
it up until a hunter came along and shot him. The moral: When you're
full of bull, keep your mouth shut.
An old timer is
a man who's had a lot of interesting experiences -- some of them true.
Don't wear woolly
chaps in sheep country during the breeding season.
man doesn't need to be any higher, than on top of a horse.
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For those of you who have followed our travels
before, you know that all plans are "loose" until we get there. We
tend to wander, and get distracted sometimes by bright shiny objects
Towns and the occasional unexpected
So this map is our "current" primary route. We will stop at some
points along the route and do what we call "hub and spoke", where we will
explore out around us by 100-200 miles for several days then move on to
the next RV park and repeat the process. Based on this route, we are
still looking for feedback on "must sees", keeping in mind we are looking
for history and neat travel destinations. Would also love to hear
from those of you who live in this area as to what we can expect as far as
crowds, bugs and critters.
While customers of our
Photo Print Shop are never affected by our travels, as in the past,
journey's this long will cause some delays in shipping items from our
General Store. However we are bringing all our DVD's, Kathy's books,
our own postcard designs and a few other items including Nuwati Herbal
products with us. We will post a special message in the
General Store for all items that might be delayed.
In the meantime, we look
forward to your feedback. Again, we'll keep you posted through our
Twitter posts, and of course new stories on the website.
We've expanded our line of Nuwati Herbal Products!
Come see our new selection of
Salt Scrubs and
Bath Salts, all made right here in the U.S.A. by
Nuwati Herbals. Save 20% when you use coupon code NEWS at checkout. Offer good through
September 1, 2014.
Also Save on
Legends of America's own published works. Just use
coupon code NEWS at checkout and take off 20%, including
already marked down items.
The Bloody Benders of Labette County
In the 19th
was a bloody place, especially before the
advocates "duked” it out for control of the new
declared itself with the
began to rage, the bloody battles continued. After the
Civil War, as
pioneers began to head westward along the many trails through
murder and mayhem persisted as hardened men from the battlefields, grown
used to the violence, continued their violent ways along the overland
trails and in the many cow towns. If not accosted by road agents,
travelers also had to be concerned about
Indian attacks. Southeast
in particular, was known as a rough area.
Bender Cabin, courtesy
What our readers are
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Like the site, found things on here I never knew I could. Thanks,
Doing both family tree and local history in my area on the
settlers who pioneered/grubbed the land in the 1830's. Traced some
of them on their movement westward - ending up in Kansas in late
1860's up to 1900's. I am sure they had to grub the landscape all
over again.... Anyhow, like this site for the detailed history I
can find. Easy to maneuver too. John, Wisconsin
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Though most of us know of
wicked ways, the deadly gunfight of the
in Coffeyville, and the many
gunfighters who spent time in the Sunflower
few aware of a family of mass murderers, living a supposed quiet life
near the small town of Cherryvale.
Just after the
ended the United States government
moved the Osage
from Labette County
to the "new”
Territory in what would later become the state of
Oklahoma. The "vacated” land was then made available to
homesteaders, who, for the most part, were a group of hard-working
pioneers farming the area’s softly rolling hills and windswept
In 1870, five families of "spiritualists” settled in western Labette
County, about seven miles northeast of where Cherryvale would be platted
a year later. One of these families was the Benders, comprised
of John Bender, Sr.; his wife, Almira; son, John, Jr.; and daughter, Kate. A cult-like group, the families chose from several available claims
and began to make their homes. John Bender, Sr. chose a 160 acre section
on the western slopes of the mounds that today continue to bear their
name. The property was located directly on the Osage
Mission-Independence Trail that operated from Independence to
Fort Scott. His son
chose a narrow piece of land just north of his father’s; however, he
never lived on his claim, nor made any improvements.
The family soon built a small one-room framed cabin, a barn, corral, and
dug a well. Inside the wooden cabin the area was partitioned with a
large canvas, creating living quarters in the back and a small inn and
store in the front. A crude sign was hung above the front door
that advertised "Groceries” to the many travelers along the Osage
Trail. The little "store” carried a few supplies such as powder, shot,
groceries, liquor, and tobacco; sold meals, and provided a "safe”
overnight resting place to the strangers along the road.
Keeping mostly to
appeared to simply be struggling homesteaders who worked hard to earn
their living like the other area pioneers. Immigrating from
Germany, John Bender, Sr. was sixty years old when he arrived to the
area; his wife about 55. Standing over six feet tall, John was a
giant of a man who, because of his piercing black eyes set deeply
under huge bushy brows, earned him the nickname of "old beetle-browed
John." His ruddy face, mostly covered by a heavy beard, sullen
expression and long hair, often led to him being described as a "wild
and wooly looking man.”
Both John and his
raw-boned wife spoke with such guttural accents that few people could
understand them. Mrs. Bender, a heavy set woman, was so unfriendly
and had such sinister eyes, that her neighbors began to call her a
"she-devil.” To add to her fierce look, Ma Bender also claimed to be
a "medium” who could speak with the "dead” and boiled herbs and roots that
she declared could be used to cast charms or wicked spells. Her
husband and son were said to have feared her as she ran the household with
an iron hand.
Continue Reading about the
Bloody Benders HERE.
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Legends of America
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Nostalgic & Historic Minded
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