Timeline

  • Meghan Gray
  • Glynnis Stevenson
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doi: 10.37764/78973.6.35

Kansas City Events

Nelson-Atkins Events

1911

Mary Atkins dies, leaving funds to build an art museum in Kansas City

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1911

Infamous “Boss Tom” inherits power from his brother

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1915

William Rockhill Nelson dies, leaving the majority of his estate for the purchase of art for Kansas City​

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1921

Ida Nelson dies, having made provisions in her will to build a museum​

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1924

Kansas City Monarchs win the inaugural Colored World Series

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1926

Laura Nelson Kirkwood dies, leaving $1.2 million to establish an art gallery

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1926

Nelson-Kirkwood Trustees are formed

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1929

Count Basie develops “Kansas City stomp” style of jazz

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1930

Ground is broken for building the museum

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1930

First French painting purchases

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1931

During the Depression, the Nelson-Atkins purchases ten French paintings at a low cost

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1932

First modern French painting purchased

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1933

The University of Missouri-Kansas City opens

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1933

Opening of the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

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1934

Jackson County courthouse is finished

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1935

First exhibition of French art at The Nelson-Atkins

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1935

Kansas City Municipal Auditorium opens

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1936

Kansas City native Charlie Parker develops Bebop style of jazz

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1938

James Roth becomes first conservator

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1938

Acquisition of two Post-Impressionist paintings

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1939

Tom Pendergast imprisoned for fifteen months for tax evasion; end of the “Pendergast Machine” years

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1940

The Nelson-Atkins is a safe haven during World War II

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1940

Lucile H. Bluford wins her anti-segregation case, and Kansas City quintuples in size

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1942

Women run the museum while their male colleagues fight in World War II

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1944

Laura Nelson Kirkwood Residuary Trust dispersal of goods, including painting by Camille Pissarro

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1945

Jackie Robinson joins the Kansas City Monarchs, and Harry S. Truman becomes President of the United States

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1951

Desegregation of Swope Park Pool

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1953

Abilene, Kansas, native Dwight D. Eisenhower becomes President of the United States

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1954

First curator of European Art is hired

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1955

The Philadelphia Athletics franchise is moved to Kansas City

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1957

Acquisition by petition of Claude Monet’s Water Lilies

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1959

Ralph T. Coe hired as Curator of Paintings and Sculpture

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1960

Acquisition of Camille Pissarro’s Garden of Les Mathurins

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1967

Kansas City Chiefs in the Super Bowl

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1968

Student protestors commemorate the April 4 assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

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1969

Founding of the Kansas City Royals Major League Baseball team​

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1970

Monetary support from “Aunt” Helen Foresman-Spencer throughout the 1970s

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1972

Arrowhead Stadium and Kansas City International Airport completed

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1973

Completion of Kauffman Stadium, home of the Kansas City Royals​

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1976

Henry and Marion Bloch purchase their first Impressionist painting

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1977

The Kansas City Mafia sets off explosions in the River Quay entertainment district

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1979

Purchase of first artwork by a French female artist

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1979

Acquisition of Jean Siméon Chardin’s Still Life with Cat and Fish, 1728

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1980

The Kansas City Royals play in World Series against the Philadelphia Phillies

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1982

Pulitzer Prize awarded to the staff of The Kansas City Star​

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1984

Acquisition of a pendant pair by Claude Joseph Vernet

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1985

Gift of painting attributed to Sébastien Bourdon from Mr. and Mrs. Robert L. Bloch

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1986

Purchase of important painting by Élisabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun and other works

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1989

Gustave Caillebotte painting enters collection

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1990

The Negro Leagues Baseball Museum is founded in the Historic 18th and Vine neighborhood

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1991

Emanuel Cleaver II becomes Kansas City’s first Black mayor

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1994

Painting by Adélaïde Labille-Guiard enters the collection

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1999

Election of first female mayor, Kay Barnes, and reopening of Union Station

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2005

Construction begins on the Power and Light District

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2007

The Bloch Building opens with the inaugural exhibition Manet to Matisse

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2007

The Sprint Center opens in the Power and Light District​

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2008

Research begins for the catalogue French Paintings and Pastels

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2010

The Kansas City Wizards become Sporting Kansas City, the town’s Major League Soccer franchise

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2011

Opening of the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, home of the Kansas City Orchestra and Ballet

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2014

Gift of pastel by Léon-Augustin Lhermitte

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2015

Major gift of art from Marion and Henry Bloch

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2015

Kansas City Royals win the World Series over the New York Mets

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2017

The Bloch Galleries open at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

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2017

Voters approve transportation improvements

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2017

Purchase of Emile Bernard’s painting of his grandmother

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2018

Queer Eye begins filming in Kansas City

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2020

Kansas City Chiefs win the Super Bowl over the San Francisco 49ers

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2021

First installment of The Collections of The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art: French Paintings and Pastels, 1600–1945

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