Author Archives: martykeenan

Bonnie and Clyde

Bonnie and Clyde concealed themselves in a Great Bend, Kansas tourist court from June 29, 1933 until July 18, 1933 in the midst of one of their biggest crime sprees.  Bonnie and Clyde rarely stayed in one location this long, … Continue reading

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John Keller

John Keller, Olympic Gold Medalist; member of KU’s 1952 NCAA Championship team   If you have any comments or additions to this page, contact        This collage is on display at Great Bend High School.  John Keller was inducted … Continue reading

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Who murdered Arthur Banta?

  Four miles west of Great Bend, Kansas two Barton County farmers, Robert Essmiller and Will Weber, were harvesting wheat on the Thursday morning of July 7, 1921. At 7:00 a.m., they noticed an empty car sitting on a lonely … Continue reading

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Gibson’s Discount Center

  The Wal-Mart Supercenter that opened in Great Bend in 2004 is a monstrosity.  Biggest building I’ve ever seen in Great Bend.  But the first, the original, discount house in Great Bend was Gibson’s Discount Center.    The original Gibson’s store in … Continue reading

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One Small Town

  Growing up in a small town is a unique experience.  Great Bend, Kansas, which marks the “great bend” of the Arkansas River southward, has it’s own story.  I was born in Great Bend, I’ve lived in Great Bend, and … Continue reading

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