The ENSOR PARK and MUSEUM
You have to see it to believe it!
The Ensor Park and Museum is a dairy farm museum located in Olathe, Kansas, near the southern edge of the Kansas City metro area. This National Historic Site was the home of two generations of the Ensor (pronounced En-zer) family. When visiting, you will enjoy an hour plus tour of the 1890s memory packed two story house and an even older peg barn full of special Ensor archives. Several farm buildings and implements are seen.
An iconic 90-foot-high radio tower next to the home relates to special historic amateur radio work done over a span of 50 years during the lives of Marshall H. Ensor and his sister Loretta Ensor. Among the fascinating achievements of Mr. Ensor, [1899-1970] to whom this site is dedicated, was his lifelong interest in teaching others.
His father passed on to him an introduction to construction tools and methods while making improvements to the family farm house and making new out buildings as young Marshall became a teenager. In high school Marshall excelled beyond others in the Industrial Arts courses.
Marshall become an instructor of Industrial Arts at the Olathe, Kansas, high School at age 18 upon his graduation. That job lasted 46 years until his retirement in 1965. His thousands of students benefited from the many courses that enabled them to find work just out of school.
The American Radio Relay League nominated Marshall H. Ensor for the 1940 ‘Wm. S. Paley Award‘ for his extraordinary work in “Teaching Radio by Radio”- also the title of his masters thesis that same year. The award was given to radio amateurs who performed a particular service of their own desire and for the welfare of our country. Mr. Ensor received the 1940 Paley Award at a huge ceremony in New York City at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel Ballroom with many dignitaries attending. His sister, Loretta, was flown there since she, also a licensed radio operator, helped on occasion to fill in for Marshall so that no evening was omitted during the 1929 to 1940 series of lessons given annually from the radio room each evening during two winter months.
Marshall Ensor retired from teaching in 1965 and set out to put things in order around the farm so that some day it might become a place where others could see what farm life, a teaching career, and early amateur radio was like. Today the ENSOR PARK & MUSEUM continues to display that vision.
A short video biography of Marshall and Loretta Ensor:
Something to Read:
Read Museum Manager Larry Woodworth’s short story “The Big Kilowatt Beast” about the revival of W9BSP.
John A. Bender of Southgate, CA. Yvonne Werp of Downey, Ca. and John P. Bender of Olathe (pictured from left to right), had the greatest fun time enjoying the museum in June, 2016. John A. is a long time Ham and his son knew the Ensor tour would be a place to take him and Yvonne. They enjoyed nearly 3 hours inspecting antiques and radios of yester year. Truly an ideal threesome.
M.E.M.O. Amateur Radio Club
Support the Ensor Park & Museum by joining the Marshall Ensor Memorial Organization (M.E.M.O) club. More information here…