The Mine Creek Battlefield
On October 25th, 1864, Union and Confederate forces met in Linn County, Kansas in one of the largest cavalry battles of the Civil War. Here General Sterling Price met with Union forces during his retreat along the Kansas-Missouri border. Today, Mine Creek is a historic site for the Kansas State Historical Society. In addition, the Mine Creek Preservation Foundation has been active in preserving the location.
This web site supplements those of the Kansas State Historical Society and the Mine Creek Preservation Foundation. Its goal is to provide a history of the location and its story before and after Price's raid.
The Public History Program created this web site in the memory of John Songer. John was born in El Dorado, Kansas in 1939, but moved to Wichita, Kansas in his youth and attended East High School. He continued his education at Wichita State University, graduating in 1962. After graduation he the City of Wichita hired him to work in the planning department. While there, at the request of Frank Carney, the co-founder of Pizza Hut, Inc., John developed the demographic profile that Pizza Hut used in its early days for developing new restaurant areas. Sensing the growth potential of Pizza Hut, John and a friend purchased the Austin, Texas, Pizza Hut restaurant. After operating it for a year, they sold it to develop Pizza Huts in the San Francisco Bay area. When Pizza Hut went public, the San Francisco operation became part of the company and John became the Western Regional Manager. When Pizza Hut began it's rapid growth of new restaurants, John was asked to lead that effort. He moved back to Wichita to become the Vice President of Development of Pizza Hut, Inc., a position he held for a number of years before resigning to go back into business with a group of friends who owned Pizza Huts in Oklahoma, Arkansas,Mississippi, and Louisiana. In that organization he was in charge of new restaurant development. He ended his Pizza Hut career by negotiating the sale of those operations to another Pizza Hut franchisee. John continued his work in the development of restaurants when he joined SASNAK as the Director of Real Estate, a position he held until his death in 1998.
Civil War history was one of John's passions. During his varied career, John traveled throughout the United States, always taking time to visit the nation's Civil War battlefields. His visits were intense. As he walked the grounds of Shiloh, Vicksburg, or Gettysburg, he recreated in his mind the events that took place. It would be his wish that at Mine Creek, you take the time to walk the grounds, picture the events in your mind, and come away with a keener sense of the sacrifices that were made for all of us by our forefathers.