100 Years: Revisiting the Jazz Age

A large cultural movement evolved in the 1920s into the grand era of The Jazz Age, as we know it today. With the rise of radio broadcasting and recording technology, the music and dance triumphed by African Americans rose to great popularity—finding its way into the lives of white middleclass Americans. Political and economic influences also gave the cultural movement its push due to increasing women’s rights, the economic boom after World War 1, and the strong affiliation of Tom “Boss Tom” Pendergast of Kansas City, Missouri. Shorter hemlines, bobbed hair, partying and drinking in “wide-open” Kansas City despite federal Prohibition laws, dancing to live jazz bands, and a newfound freedom among both men and women all paved the way for The Jazz Age to flourish and create a unique and radically different road America would travel down for decades to come.

This exhibit represents a look back at the era that started it all. We are showcasing numerous photographs that show the everyday life of the 1920s, famous jazz artists, and what the nightlife was like. There will also be garments to provide accurate portrayal of the new fashion that helped turn the 1920s into such an iconic decade. On top of all that, there will also be a graphophone added to the exhibit to showcase how far we have come in terms of musical technology in just 100 years, as well as show how exactly one would be able to listen to music when it was not listened to live.

There will be a members-only preview day on Saturday, November 23rd from 1:00pm-6:00pm.


Sunday, November 24, 2019 to Friday, January 3, 2020




1616 East 18th Street
Kansas City, MO 64108
United States