KCTR acknowledges and honors the people and cultures of indigenous groups this Native American Heritage month. In connection to this, we specifically acknowledge the Native people who once occupied the land on which KCTR’s office resides. While there are not currently federally recognized tribes in the state of Missouri, this is because of the forced removal of Native people from this land. In 1830 there were at least half a dozen distinct Native tribes in the state, but with the passage of the Indian Removal Act most of those individuals were forcibly moved and resettled in present-day Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska.
Our office is specifically located on land which was once inhabited by various different groups including Osage, Kickapoo, and the Očhéthi Šakówiŋ nations. We recognize that these groups and others were forcibly removed from their Native land by westward encroachment. The name of Missouri and the bordering state of Kansas reflect the Native inhabitants of the land. Missouri comes from a Sioux Tribe called “Missouria” meaning “town of the large canoes” or “muddy water“. While the state of Kansas gets its name from the Kanza (Kaw) tribe.
We encourage all individuals, businesses and organizations to spend time researching and reflecting on the history of your local land. You can use this online map to find out what Native people once occupied a specific area of land. You can learn more through the Native Governance Center for ideas on how to create, and the importance of land acknowledgments. The State of Historical Society of Missouri also offers Missouri-specific information related to Native American history. Additionally, there are A People’s History of Kansas City Podcast episodes that discuss Native American people and history in our area. A few highlight episodes include “The Occupation that Saved a Wyandot Cemetery” and “Where Missouri Got Its Name“.