Livestock Exchange Home to Kansas City Cowtown History



When you head down to the West Bottoms in Kansas City, you see an older brick building with the words Kansas City Live Stock Exchange sprawled in white across its top. Since converted into office space, its age-old glory began with its completion in 1910. Today, daily passerby can still imagine the former stockyards of Kansas in their full swing. Though the Exchange is the only reminder of the meatpacking heyday, the sights, sounds, and smells, of the era are still remembered thanks to a collection of in-depth photographs, blueprints, drawings, and documents discovered in one of the Exchange’s storerooms. The collection is not just about meat-packing but about community as the industry made Kansas City a commercial center with hotels, churches, restaurants, and homes. Kansans will no longer just imagine the stockyards but get to experience them this Spring in an exhibit at the Kansas City Central Library, 14 W. 10th St. With the help of a sizable grant, the library will catalog and document the trove of historical treasure, making it available to researchers, nowadays cowboys and their families.