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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Emporia in Lyon County, Kansas — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)
 

Prairie Passages

 
 
Prairie Passages Marker image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., February 19, 2011
1. Prairie Passages Marker
Inscription.
The stone sculptures before you were [?]ed by [?] Richard Stauffer and produced by the 1992 Kansas Sculptors Association Team Carv[?] [?] to illustrated the theme “Prairie Passage,” reflecting Emporia’s role as gateway to the Flint Hills[?] , its significance as a trade and education center, its history, and its vision for the future. The scu[?] [?] a variety of images about the land, its [?]es, and its people. The pylons are clustered in four pairs of echoing images as described below:

ALAHE
Alahe, an Indian—possibly Osage—name, means “people of the east wind.” The Alahe stone is echoed by the pylon with gesturing hands at its top. This sign language means “I come in peace.” The hands are carved above images that were derived from area potsherds (bits of broken pottery), the meaning of which may never be discovered.

PLUMB
Preston B. Plumb was a founder of Emporia and an early Kansas legislator. The Plumb stone is echoed by the pylon bearing symbols related to nourishment provided by the land. The images include wheat, row crops, cattle, sheep, wagon wheel, cowboy hat, iron, shovel, and church.

LYON
Lyon County, in which Emporia is located, takes its name from Nathaniel Lyon, a Civil War general. The Lyon stone is echoed
Prairie Passages Sculpture and Marker image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., February 19, 2011
2. Prairie Passages Sculpture and Marker
by a pylon that symbolizes elements of the land and air; clouds, lightning, rainbow, rain, creeks, hills, turkey and fish.

WAW
WAW (William Allen White), the most contemporary of the characters represented in stone, achieved international fame as editor of the Emporia Gazette. The WAW stone is echoed by the pylon that features images of railroads, gears, hammers, finance, and a mortar board—connoting the significance of economy and education.

The Prairie Passage sculptures are made of Cottonwood limestone, quarried from the Bayer Stone Quarry in Chase County west of Emporia. The eight pylons range from ten to fifteen feet high and weigh between two and nine tons. Each is pinned to a reinforced concrete foundation.

The sculptures are silhouettes with incised lines of varying depth and thickness. The carving was done by drilling, chiseling, feather wedging, and masonry sawing. Both skilled and inexperienced carvers participated in the carving.

In addition to Richard Stauffer, Emporia Arts Council, participants in the 1992 Kansas Sculptors Association Team Carve, City of Emporia, Lyon County, and Bayer Stone, Inc., many individuals and organizations volunteered to bring this project to life.

”Here, the fairest of the world’s habitations”
William Allen White, 1925
 
Erected
Prairie Passages Alahe Carving image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., February 19, 2011
3. Prairie Passages Alahe Carving
1992 by Richard Stauffer, Emporia Arts Council, 1992 Kansas Sculptors Association Team Carve, City of Emporia, Lyon County, Bayer Stone, Women's Club and Others.
 
Location. 38° 24.527′ N, 96° 13.002′ W. Marker is in Emporia, Kansas, in Lyon County. Marker is at the intersection of Industrial Road and U.S. 50, on the left when traveling south on Industrial Road. Click for map. Marker is near the southwest corner of the Lyon County Fairgrounds property. Marker is in this post office area: Emporia KS 66801, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Garfield School Bell (approx. 0.9 miles away); John B. Anderson Memorial Library (approx. 1.2 miles away); World War II Memorial at St. Catherine's Church (approx. 1.5 miles away); Mary White (approx. 1.9 miles away); Hovgard Memorial Tower (approx. 1.9 miles away); White Memorial Park (approx. 1.9 miles away); William Allen White (approx. 1.9 miles away); "Our Flag Was Still There..." (approx. 2 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Emporia.
 
More about this marker. The marker is deteriorated and illegible in places.
 
Also see . . .
1. Story of the Stones: Prairie Passages. (Submitted on June 8, 2011, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
Prairie Passages Alahe Echo Carving image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., February 19, 2011
4. Prairie Passages Alahe Echo Carving

2. Preston B. Plumb. (Submitted on June 8, 2011, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
3. Nathaniel Lyon. (Submitted on June 8, 2011, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
4. William Allen White. (Submitted on June 8, 2011, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
 
Prairie Passages Plumb Carving image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., February 19, 2011
5. Prairie Passages Plumb Carving
Prairie Passages Plumb Echo Carving image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., February 19, 2011
6. Prairie Passages Plumb Echo Carving
Prairie Passages Lyon Carving image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., February 19, 2011
7. Prairie Passages Lyon Carving
Prairie Passages Lyon Echo Carving image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., February 19, 2011
8. Prairie Passages Lyon Echo Carving
Prairie Passages White Carving image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., February 19, 2011
9. Prairie Passages White Carving
Prairie Passages White Echo Carving image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., February 19, 2011
10. Prairie Passages White Echo Carving
Prairie Passages image. Click for full size.
By William Fischer, Jr., February 19, 2011
11. Prairie Passages
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 475 times since then and 11 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11. submitted on , by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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