The Magic of Things: 5 Continents, 25 Centuries, 125 Years of Collecting

February 19-October 9, 2022

To celebrate the depth and breadth of what is now Kauffman Museum, the spring 2022 exhibition is titled “The Magic of Things: 5 Continents, 25 Centuries, 125 Years of Collecting.” Thirteen current and former staff have selected artifacts and animal specimens not on permanent display to illustrate their significance to the collectors and to the museum staff who worked with them.

Items in the exhibition range from a Mesopotamian cuneiform tablet from 2000 BCE to a Macintosh computer from 1986, a ngoma drum from a Zimbabwean healer to a 1914 Indian motorcycle, and a Red-sided Eclectus Parrot from New Guinea to a horse-drawn hearse last used at a funeral home in Goessel, Kansas.


Vapes: Marketing an Addiction

July 29-January 9, 2022

This traveling exhibition examines what we know about e-cigarettes

Vapes: Marketing an Addiction tells three intertwining stories:

  • the rise and fall of cigarette smoking and advertising in the 20th century
  • the emergence of the e-cigarette in the 21st century and new marketing strategies
  • the challenges of nicotine addiction and quitting

These stories connect with all of us–our families, our friends, and people in our community. What’s your story?




December 5 – January 17, 2021

Crossroads: Change in Rural America, offers small towns a chance to look at their own paths to highlight the changes that affected their fortunes over the past century. The exhibition will prompt discussions about what happened when America’s rural population became a minority of the country’s population and the ripple effects that occurred. The exhibit covers themes such as: Identity, Land, Community, Persistence and Managing Change with photographs, hands-on activities, and audio and video clips provided by the Smithsonian in the Crossroads exhibition to tell the history and culture of local rural life in Kansas and spark conversations about our state’s future.


Of Land and People: Our Community at the Crossroads of Change 

December 5 – January 17, 2021

North Newton is strategically located at a historic crossroads in south-central Kansas. Of Land and People: Our Community at the Crossroads of Change celebrates the land on which our museum and community is placed, honors the people who have lived and worked on it, and invites visitors to reflect on the profound changes that have occurred here.

Of Land and People introduces the story of First Kansans who hunted and traveled along Sand Creek; ponder the changes to the prairie and the enrichment to our community brought by immigrants; and explore the rich legacy of trails past and present in our town.



Sorting Out Race: Examining Racial Identity and Stereotypes in Thrift Store Donations

August 28 – November 29, 2020

Every day thrift stores across America receive donations of objects that display racial imagery—antique advertising cards, collectible salt-and-pepper shakers, vintage children’s books, and mugs with sports team mascots. Are these objects harmless reminders of historical attitudes or do they continue to perpetuate negative stereotypes about race? Should thrift stores sell these objects? Or should they be “sorted out” of the resale environment and discarded?

This exhibition is a Kauffman Museum Traveling Exhibition.


Digital Interactive

We created an abbreviated presentation version of Sorting Out Race: Examining Racial Identity and Stereotypes in Thrift Store DonationsImmerse yourself in the Sorting Out Race interactive, part of Kauffman Museum’s #MuseumAtHome initiative. 


This exhibit received the 2018 American Association of State and Local History Leadership in History Award

Virtual Tour Available

Meta: an Exhibition about Exhibitions

April 2 – July 30, 2020

Meta offers a glimpse into four of the most influential and creative exhibition styles from years past: Cabinet of Curiosities, Salon Style, Partial Context, and White Cube. Within these four particular design styles, Bethel College student curators, Elizabeth Friesen Birky and Emma Girton seek to show how styles and expectations of museum display have changed, remained, and morphed over time to communicate different messages to the public.


City of Hope: Resurrection City and the 1968 Poor People’s Campaign

February 4 – March 15, 2020

This poster exhibit honors Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s daring vision for economic justice and opportunity for every U.S. citizen. City of Hope: Resurrection City and the 1968 Poor People’s Campaign is organized by the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service in collaboration with the National Museum of African American History and Culture.


K is for Kansas

August 18, 2019 – February 2, 2020

Our exhibit team made a special Kansas alphabet choosing from the countless people, places, things, plants, and animals which make our state a special place. K is for Kansas is a Kauffman Museum Traveling Exhibition.

Our alphabet includes the state symbols that all Kansas children study, but also fun and curious facts about the state, and stories which are often overlooked. Our alphabet reflects who we are:
• Kansans who grew up in Kansas and Kansans who chose to move here,
• Kansans who are parents, teachers, scientists, artists and museum professionals,
• Kansans who love Kansas.

Campaign for a New China: Looking Back on Posters from the Cultural Revolution, 1966-1976

February 9, 2019 – May 19, 2019

Bethel College peace studies professor Robert Kreider traveled to China on a friendship tour in 1976, where he collected dozens of the popular posters that spread Mao Zedong’s vision for renewal in what became known as the Cultural Revolution. Upon return to Kansas, Kreider used the posters to help his students understand a particular time and place through their imagery. In Campaign for a New China, we look back on these posters and invite you to reflect on their messages.

This exhibition is in development to become a Kauffman Museum Traveling Exhibition.

In Collaboration

This exhibit was a special collaboration with Bethel College Visual Arts Professor Rachel Epp Buller and student curators Elizabeth Friesen Birky, Emma Girton, and student graphic designer Austin Prouty.

Exhibit Support

This exhibition was supported by a Humanities for All grant from Humanities Kansas.


Better Choose Me: Collecting and Creating with Tobacco Fabric Novelties

August 22, 2018 – January 20, 2019

A Kauffman Museum Traveling Exhibition, this exhibition is the first to tell the story of fabric novelties issued with tobacco products (1880 to 1920) which women sewed into colorful items for the home. The exhibition features cigar ribbons, cigarette “silkies,” and tobacco flannels from the Ethel Ewert Abrahams collection.

Newton Kids Create: Storytelling through Art

April 22, 2018 – January 20, 2019

This exhibit began as a collaborative project between the Kansas Institute for Peace and Conflict Resolution (KIPCOR), Newton USD 373 art teachers and librarians, and Kauffman Museum.  KIPCOR invited author and storyteller Rafe Martin to retell folktales from around the world. Rafe was hosted by area schools for storytelling sessions, and art teachers and school librarians included Mr. Martin’s work in their curriculum. Kauffman Museum offered a space to exhibit the students’ artwork. A piece of collective artwork was created by over 1,000 Newton students, telling stories through art.

The Chisholm Trail: Driving the American West

December 19, 2017 – April 1, 2018

The Chisholm Trail fundamentally changed the American West. From the birth of the cowboy as icon to the revival of the cattle industry, the Old Chisholm Trail helped shape our popular culture by altering how we thought of the American West and the individuals who lived there. The Chisholm Trail: Driving the American West is a celebration of the 150th anniversary of the Chisholm Trail. This traveling exhibit, in collaboration with Symphony in the Flint Hills and Flint Hills Design with major sponsorship from Lost Trail Soda, invites visitors of all ages to explore the Chisholm Trail from its inception in the late 1860s to today.


Voices of Conscience: Peace Witness in the Great War

November 1, 2017 – January 21, 2018

A Kauffman Museum Traveling Exhibition, this project remembers the witness of peace-minded people against the First World War, 1914-1918. This witness included men and women, religious believers and secular humanitarians, political protesters, and sectarian separatists. They resisted U.S. involvement in the war, the enactment of military conscription, the war bond drives, and the denial of freedom of speech under the Espionage and Sedition Acts. 


Voices of Conscience premiered at the National World War I Museum in Kansas City during the “Remembering Muted Voices: Conscience, Dissent, Resistance and Civil Liberties in World War I through Today”  Symposium, October 19-22, 2017

Exhibit Support

Kauffman Museum Association
Kansas Humanities Council
Rainbow Mennonite Church, Kansas City, KS and the Schowalter Foundation
Remembering Muted Voices Symposium: Plough Publishing, Hutterian Communities, Center for Mennonite Brethren Studies Center at Tabor College


Memory Matters: Works by Gesine Janzen

August 16, 2016 – May 28, 2017

Interweaving cultural artifacts and contemporary art, this special exhibition explores the independence yet interconnectedness of time and memory. Photographs, etchings and mixed-media installations by Gesine Janzen share space with decorative arts, textiles, architectural fragments and documents drawn from Kauffman Museum’s permanent collection to examine themes of historical and artistic consciousness. Janzen is a 1990 graduate of Bethel College and currently is Associate Professor of Printmaking at Montana State University.

Root for the Home Team: Building Community through Sports

September 1, 2015 – June 5, 2016

This exhibit brings together many stories of sports and community from the Newton area. Imagine the grit and perseverance of players on a football team who work together for 10 years before securing a single win. Or imagine being a foreign student and finding community by introducing your new classmates to your favorite sport. Or imagine the bond shared when daughter, mother, and grandmother all play the same sport, but with vastly different experiences in the years before and after Title IX. The photographs and artifacts shared here tell the stories of success through adversity, of international friendships, and of sports passed on through generations.

In Collabortion

•Guest curator, Dr. Rachel Epp Buller
• Sponsored by the Kansas Humanities Council, in conjunction with the Smithsonian Institution’s Hometown Teams exhibition.
• Research assistance from Diane Flickner, David Kreider, Raymond Olais, John Thiesen at the Mennonite Library and Archives.

Exhibit Support

• Kauffman Museum Assocation
• Bethel College Soccer Club Alumni
• Kansas Humanities Council


Sorting Out Race: Examining Racial Identity and Stereotypes in Thrift Store Donations

February 27, 2015 – May 24, 2015

Every day thrift stores across America receive donations of objects that display racial imagery—antique advertising cards, collectible salt-and-pepper shakers, vintage children’s books, and mugs with sports team mascots. Are these objects harmless reminders of historical attitudes or do they continue to perpetuate negative stereotypes about race? Should thrift stores sell these objects? Or should they be “sorted out” of the resale environment and discarded?

This exhibition is a Kauffman Museum Traveling Exhibition.

Exhibit Support

• Kauffman Museum Association
• Fransen Family Foundation
• Schowalter Foundation
• Newton Et Cetera Shop Local Giving Grant
• Kansas Humanities Council


This exhibit received the 2018 American Association of State and Local History Leadership in History Award


Climate and Energy Central: Doing Science in Kansas

July 18, 2014 – January 18, 2015

This Kauffman Museum Traveling Exhibition features Kansas scientists who are working together to address the grand challenges of renewable energy and potential climate change. Their research is supported by a grant from the National Science Foundation through the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research.

What’s Old is New: Recent Acquisitions to Our Mennonite Collections

February 2014 – May 18, 2014

What does Kauffman Museum collect? From the museum’s beginnings in 1896, our staff have collected cultural history artifacts and natural history specimens that teach and inspire. To illustrate our policies and collecting priorities, this exhibition features recent acquisitions to our Mennonite collections, from church pulpits to quilts, immigrant furniture, and a cemetery map on a bread board!

Art That Worked: WPA Art in Newton, 1935-1943

September 8,2013 – January 5, 2014

Art That Worked celebrates Newton’s impressive collection of work from the Kansas Museum Project, a Works Progress Administration (WPA) program. This statewide education initiative trained unemployed artists and created a visual art education collection for use in schools, libraries and museums across Kansas.

Lenders to the exhibition: USD 373 Newton Public Schools, Newton Public Library, Mennonite Library and Archives, Bethel College Art Department, Kauffman Museum.


Considering the Commonplace

April 13, 2013 – May 19, 2013

Bob Regier is a retired artist-teacher living in North Newton, Kansas. The images selected for this Kauffman Museum Traveling Exhibition are drawn from a collection of photographs accumulated from twenty years of Kansas travels with his wife, Vernette, and their friends Keith and Aldine Sprunger. These adventures to all quadrants of the state numerous times have led to an enduring affection for the ordinary‚ which, surprisingly, time and again becomes quite extraordinary.


Lincoln: The Constitution and the Civil War

February 23, 2013 – April 5, 2013

This exhibition vividly evokes Lincoln’s struggle to resolve the basic questions that divided Americans at the most perilous moment in the nation’s history: Was the United States truly one nation, or was it a confederacy of sovereign and separate states? How could a country founded on the belief that “all men are created equal” tolerate slavery? In a national crisis, would civil liberties be secure?

Exhibition organized by The National Constitution Center and the American Library Association Public Programs Office with a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Threshing Stone: Mennonite Artifact & Icon

October 6, 2013 – January 20, 2013

This special exhibition brings together the stories of threshing technology, Russian Mennonite immigration, and how the threshing stone became a symbol of Kansas wheat heritage and Mennonite tradition. Recognizing the history and symbolic meanings of the threshing stone is part of the 125th anniversary celebrations at Bethel College.


Americans by Choice: The Story of Immigration & Citizenship in Kansas

July 14, 2012 – January 20, 2012

Americans by Choice illustrates the paths to citizenship taken by Kansas settlers from around the world over the past 150 years. The exhibition features photographs and documents to convey their personal struggles, sacrifices and accomplishments along the journey to naturalization.

Americans by Choice is a special exhibition from the U.S. District Court, District of Kansas, in celebration of the court’s 150th anniversary. The traveling version is based on a permanent exhibit of the same title at the Robert J. Dole Courthouse in Kansas City, Kansas. 

In the Fields of Time: The Impact of Two Kansas Boys on American Archeology

July 14, 2012 – January 20, 2013

In the Fields of Time is a Kauffman Museum Traveling Exhibition on Emil Haury and Waldo Wedel, two native Kansans whose archeological explorations of the American southwest and the Great Plains have shaped our understanding of American prehistory.


The Eyes of a Stranger: Indian Images and Experiences by Cookie Wiebe

November 13, 2011 – January 22, 2012

In 2009, we returned to work at Woodstock School in Mussoorie, Uttarakhand, India. We lived in the foothills of the Himalayas, surrounded by natural beauty and cultural riches. My camera is small, light – and always at hand, leading to more photos than I can sort, catalog or even begin to share. This exhibit is an attempt to celebrate the beauty of India’s people, as seen through the eyes of a stranger – a stranger, who, after 35 years, is ready to claim the identity of “artist”.
From the Artists statement to the exhibit.

Awesome 150: Museum Friends Share Their Favorites

Summer 2011 – October 9, 2011

Kauffman Museum commemorates 150 awesome years of Kansas statehood (1861-2011) with a special exhibition of 150 awesome items from museum storage. Volunteers served as “community curators” by selecting artifacts and taxidermy specimens for the exhibition.

KANSAS: Kids at Northridge Sharing Art & Story

January 2011 – January 30, 2011

KANSAS features official state symbols and historic artifacts in art and stories by children from Northridge Elementary School—the museum’s neighborhood school in Newton, Kansas. USD 373 teachers Gail Pryce (writing and drama) and LaDonna Unruh Voth (art) led the KANSAS project in collaboration with Bethel College students enrolled in “Teaching the Expressive Arts.” Pryce, Voth, Denetta Denno (physical education) and Brian Postier (music) met weekly with college students at Northridge to work with children from kindergarten through fourth grade.



The Bison: American Icon

September 1, 2010 – October 24, 2010

Few animals conjure the power and symbolic presence of the North American bison. Whether painted on a tipi or an artist’s canvas, minted on a nickel, or seen grazing in Yellowstone National Park, the image of the bison stirs in us deep loyalties to the North American landscape. Wild and fundamental, the bison is a familiar part of our shared heritage.

The Bison was based on an exhibition developed by the C.M. Russell Museum in Great Falls, Montana, designed and fabricated by Kauffman Museum and Flint Hills Design, North Newton, Kansas, and toured by NEH on the Road, a special initiative of the National Endowment for the Humanities. It is now a Kauffman Museum Traveling Exhibition.

Beloved: Artwork by Kristin Diener

July 17, 2010 – August 22, 2010

This special exhibition features handcrafted personal adornment and whimsical rolling toys by Kristin Diener of Albuquerque, New Mexico. Diener’s work is sometimes referred to as memory jewelry. Diener notes, “Many pieces refer directly to my Amish and Mennonite heritage, some incorporating family objects.” Diener is the granddaughter of Louella and Tilman R. Smith—who was president of Hesston College in Hesston, Kansas, from 1959 to 1968.


Images of Paraguay

February 27 – May 23, 2010

A joint exhibition featuring contemporary, ethnographic and folk art from the heart of South America at Carriage Factory Gallery and Kauffman Museum.

Visual arts are powerful communicators of a people’s history, cultural identity and values across boundaries of language and political borders. In this exhibition the viewer will come face to face with the diversity of Paraguay’s peoples, the depth and challenges of this beautiful country’s history, the vitality and many layers of its artistic traditions and current visual culture.
Dr. Reinhild Kauenhoven Janzen, guest curator


Wheels: Transportation and Toys from the Collections

Fall 2009 – January 24, 2010

A century ago children commonly received tricycles, toy trucks, wagons and doll strollers as Christmas gifts. The Kauffman Museum collections include these wheeled toys as well as adult-size bicycles, motorcycles and automobiles, including the 1914 Indian motorcycle featured in this exhibition. A free-to-the-public “Big Wheels” event featured a 1926 American LaFrance fire truck, 1955 Kenworth 900 semi, 1956 White Super Power truck, and a 1957 Nash Metropolitan.

Hot and Cold: Images of America in Conflict

February 20, 2009 – April 19, 2009

Times of war and conflict produce powerful images within a society. The exhibition features thirty-three works ranging from the wood engraving “Kansas Sketches” published in Harper’s Weekly in 1858, to “Iraq Identity Playing Cards” printed in 2003 by the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency. Hot and Cold also includes “America is Waiting,” a 1982 work by experimental filmmaker Bruce Conner (1933-2008) who was recognized at the 2009 Oscar awards ceremony.

Guest curator, James W. Johnson


Mennonites in Texas: The Quiet in the Land

July 27, 2008 – September 1, 2008

With their plain dress and quiet, unassuming demeanor, the Old Colony Mennonites are a striking presence within the often flamboyant and proud people of Texas.  This exhibit by photojournalist Laura L. Camden is a photographic tour of the Mennonites of Seminole, a West Texas farming community of more than five thousand residents and five separate congregations.


All photographs are from the Laura Camden Photographic Archive, at The Center for American History at The University of Texas at Austin

From Cobalt to Indigo: Blue Artifacts from Kauffman Museum Collections

March 10, 2008 – May 25, 2008

Kauffman Museum presents a new special exhibition that explores the history of the color blue in From Cobalt to Indigo: Blue Artifacts from the Kauffman Museum Collections. Museum director, Rachel Pannabecker, says, “According to a recent international study, blue is the world’s favorite color.  Likewise, we found that blue is the most popular color of artifacts in our study collections.  We selected 162 blue artifacts for this spring exhibition.”


Meet the Beak

September 2, 2007 – January 20, 2008

Meet the Beak features 34 birds from the Charles J. Kauffman bird collections. Visitors are invited to participate in activities that explore the structure and function of bird beaks and may use supplied reference materials to research the specimens on display. In addition, eight limited-edition porcelain sculptures of North American birds by the Boehm Studio for the National Audubon Society are on display in a silent auction that ends January 18, 2008.


Homage to the Flint Hills: A Gathering of Art Inspired by the Tallgrass Prairie of Kansas

March 14, 2006 – May 31, 2006

The Flint Hills are so named for the bands of chert embedded in the Permian-age limestones of that physiographic region of Kansas. This exhibit was organized by Don Lambert, formerly of Topeka. The traveling exhibition features 37 works in a variety of art media, each depicting the Flint Hills. Artists whose works were selected for the exhibition include Stan Herd of Lawrence, Patricia Duncan of Rockport, Maine, and Phil Epp of Newton (BC ’72). Kauffman Museum is the last Kansas venue before the exhibition travels to Washington, DC. 

Exhibit Sponsors
  • The Kansas Land Trust 
  • Central National Bank 
  • The Andrea P. Glenn Fund for Education and Community Service
Hosts for Homage to the Flint Hills

Topeka-Shawnee County Library, Topeka • Cowley County Community College, Arkansas City • Ernie Miller Nature Center, Olathe • Chanute Art Gallery, Chanute • Junction City Arts Council, Junction City • Manhattan Arts Center, Manhattan • Lawrence Arts Center, Lawrence • Emporia Arts Council and Center for Great Plains Studies, Emporia State University, Emporia • Shafer Gallery, Barton County Community College, Great Bend • City Arts, Wichita • Erman B. White Gallery, Butler County Community College, El Dorado • Kauffman Museum, Bethel College, North Newton


In Collaboration
  • Curator Karrie Peterson, a Bethel College senior from Pella, Iowa.

  • Graphic designer Julie Miller, a 2005 Bethel College graduate from North Newton.

Featured Article

Read More in Mennonite World Review article.

The Gift of Quilting

December 1, 2005 – March 5, 2006

For many Mennonites, quilting represents a rich tradition and a gift to be passed from generation to generation. This exhibition recognizes the historical, cultural and artistic value of quilting in Mennonite communities by showcasing 18 quilts, most of which have origins or strong connections to Mennonite families that lived in the Harvey, Marion and McPherson County area of south central Kansas. Featured quilts include two Double Irish Chain quilts, Indian Wedding, a variation of Aster, a pieced triangles with 19th century fabrics, a Plume appliqué, two embroidered Friendship quilts, and a crib quilt.

The Art of Sharing, The Sharing of Art: Responses to Mennonite Relief in Postwar Germany

February 20 – May 29, 2005

When you are a victim and someone feeds and clothes you, how can you respond so as to preserve your dignity? This exhibition commemorates the 50th anniversary of Mennonite Central Committee’s reception of thanks gifts from the German people in gratitude for relief received after the war. The Dankspende artworks were previously brought back together for a Kauffman Museum exhibition in 1984 by Reinhild Kauenhoven Janzen.


K is for Kansas: Exploring Kansas from A-Z

2004: First Exhibition

Kauffman Museum invites you to discover the magnificent state of Kansas with the Kauffman Museum Traveling ExhibitionK is for Kansas: Exploring Kansas from A to Z. Our exhibit team made a special Kansas alphabet choosing from the countless people, places, things, plants and animals which make our state a special place

Our alphabet includes the state symbols that all Kansas children study, but also fun and curious facts about the state, and stories which are often overlooked. Our alphabet reflects who we are:
• Kansans who grew up in Kansas and Kansans who chose to move here
• Kansans who are parents, teachers, scientists, artists and museum professionals
• Kansans who love Kansas.

Reeds & Wool: Patterned Screens of Central Asia


This Kauffman Museum Traveling Exhibition focuses entirely on Kyrgyz reed screens. These screens and their story were largely unknown outside of Kyrgyzstan while it was part of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (1920-1991). Richly textured and beautiful, reed screens were made by nomadic Kyrgyz women as traditional furnishings for their yurt dwellings. The exhibit includes a complete display system comprised of interpretive exhibit panels and display supports for the reed screens.


When Disaster Strikes

July 10 – October 19, 2003

Mennonite Disaster Service celebrated its fiftieth anniversary by commissioning a traveling exhibit When Disaster Strikes: The Story of MDS. The story of the MDS motto “responding, rebuilding, restoring” is told in four modules that disassemble and serve as their own shipping crates. When Disaster Strikes traveled across North America before returning to Kauffman Museum.


Landscape of Memories: Art Installations by Katherine Bartel

February 2 – May 25, 2003

History is a combination of photographs, documents and memory. All of these sources originate from a particular viewpoint, a particular time. Historians would say that there is no such thing as an “objective” account. As an artist, I have taken my personal viewpoint one step farther, expressing not the factual narrative as I remember it but the cultural identity it has imprinted on me. We are the sum of the legacy of our ancestors and the person we choose to become. Embedded in the inheritance are values, beliefs, a version of what is normal, and many rich relationships with people. We may decide to live differently once we are grown, but the foundation is already laid…. My work as an artist brings me closer to God and community. Katherine Bartel, January 2003


Golden Weaves of Grain


The Kansas Association of Straw Artists (KASA) sponsored this traveling display of over 200 art pieces created from wheat straw. Featured in the exhibition are the State Seal of Kansas, a covered wagon, a wheat paper nativity and wearable jewelry. The goal of KASA is to preserve and promote the ancient art of the plaiting and decorative use of wheat straw. The traveling exhibition is supplemented by pieces created by local wheat weavers, including landscapes of wheat straw marquetry and a full-size Christmas tree with wheat straw ornaments.

The Eye of An Artist: A Visual Journey with Bob Regier

May 25 – November 3, 2002

What do artists do? How do they see the world?

This exhibit explores the interrelationship of perception and visual modes of communication through the life and work of North Newton artist and designer Bob Regier. Behind the finished works, framed and hung on the gallery wall, lie process, history, and journey.

Exhibit Team

Bob Regier, curator & designer
Chuck Regier, technical design
Rachel Pannabecker, curatorial support
David Kreider & Scott Meissen, fabrication
Sonya Buller, exhibit support

Exhibit Support
  • members of the Kauffman Museum Association
  • Bethel College alumni
  • Stauth Memorial Museum, Montezuma, Kansas
  • Jim Johnson, Rickerby Art Services, Wichita, Kansas
  • Mennonite Press, Newton, Kansas

Scenes of Christmas: Victorian Newspaper Illustrations, 1857-1902

November 24, 2002 – January 19, 2003

American newspapers like Harper’s Weekly and Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper were major, national publications from the late 1850s to well into the twentieth century. Scenes of Christmas features the Dale and Rosie Horst collection of 67 American newspaper illustrations. The Victorian-era artifacts are from the permanent collections of Kauffman Museum.

Exhibit Team

Sonya Buller, David Kreider, Rachel Pannabecker, Arlin Ratzlaff, Bob Regier, Chuck Regier, Irma Voran, Elizabeth Zerger

Guest Curators

Dale & Rosie Horst

Forgotten Florals: Decorative Discoveries from the Kauffman Museum Collections

March 3 – April 1, 2002

Flowers are a perennial favorite in decoration. The special exhibition Forgotten Florals presents artifacts that feature floral motifs, from quilts to furniture to artworks, all made between 1815 and 1945. The exhibition is a collaborative effort by friends of Kauffman Museum to show the range and beauty of pieces in our collections that are not on permanent display. We welcome clarification about the source of items listed as given by “undesignated” donors.



Walking in Beauty: Navajo Blankets and Rugs from Kansas Collections

November 4, 2001- January 20, 2002

What constitutes tradition among the Navajo people? How does culture change? When does innovation become an authentic part of a culture? The exhibition Walking in Beauty features 23 rarely seen examples of Navajo weavings from the public and private collections in Kansas. The blankets and rugs have been selected to show a chronology of Navajo weaving:

• Classic Period, before 1865: First Phase and Second Phase Chief’s Blankets, Woman’s Two-Piece Blanket Dress
• Transition Period, 1865-1890: Transitional Chief’s Blanket, Eye-Dazzler, Germantown, Ganado
• Rug Period, 1890-1950: J.B. Moore Early Crystal, Two Grey Hills, Storm, Pictorial, Yei, Yeibichai Dancer, Regional, Saddle Blankets, Germantown Samplers
• Recent Period, 1950-present: Two Grey Hills

Exhibit Support: Kansas Humanities Council

Simple Gifts: Artworks by Mary Lou and Ernie Goertzen

March 19 – October 13, 2001

An exhibition featuring pen and watercolor, quilts and “quilt images,” and designs on internationally known Block porcelain china by Mary Lou Goertzen, and paintings in acrylic by Ernie Goertzen, an artist couple from Deadwood, Oregon.

About the Artists:
Both Mary Lou and Ernie grew up in Kansas, and their art reflects their appreciation for rural landscapes, the colors of nature, and simple living. Ernie works in acrylics–”I just really love the Kansas Flint Hills, its meadows, outcroppings of limestone, and wild cedar. It’s always been the landscape that has appealed to me.”
Mary Lou works in ink and watercolor. Simple Gifts includes her quilts and quilt-image portraits as well as her floral and vegetable designs on internationally-known Block porcelain china–”I began to paint flowers when we moved from the prairies of Kansas to Berkeley, California., where the flowers bloom 12 months of the year.”

Other Exhibits 2000 – 1983

  •  2000  Drawn from the Plains: American Regionalist Art, 1920-1950
  • 2000  Buffalo Bones & Grinding Stones
  • 2000  Heritage Works: Abner Hershberger
  • 1999  Better Choose Me: Collecting and Creating with Tobacco Fabric Novelties, 1880-1920
  • 1999  Heritage Sampler
  • 1998  Reeds & Wool: Patterned Screens of Central Asia
  • 1998  Recuerdos de Newton: The Mexican-American Community of Newton, Kansas
  • 1997  Of Matter and Spirit: African Art from Kansas Collections
  • 1996  Menno Simons: Image, Art and Identity
  • 1995  The Gift of Hope: The MCC Story, 1920-1995
  • 1994  Pythons, Parlor Lamps and Poems: Charles Kauffman and His Museum
  • 1993  Threads of Life: Mayan Clothing from Guatemala
  • 1993  Our Legacy–From the Heart of the Decorative Arts Collection
  • 1992  Beyond Tradition: Mennonite Art Quilts
  • 1991  Mennonite Furniture: A Migrant Tradition, 1766-1910
  • 1990  Mirror of the Martyrs
  • 1990 Shards, Trails and Trees: A Landscape’s Hidden History
  • 1989  What We Collect: Recent Acquisitions
  • 1989  West Africa: Powerful Patterns
  • 1988  Victorian Sentiments: Beauty and the Beast
  • 1988  Decoys: Old Tools, Modern Art
  • 1987  Of Land and People (Kauffman Museum Permanent Exhibit)
  • 1987  From College Closets: Bethel 1887-1987
  • 1986  Images of the Prairie
  • 1986  Anatolian Carpets: A Family Connection
  • 1985  From Russia… with Trunks: Immigrant Culture of the 1870s
  • 1984  The Art of Sharing, the Sharing of Art: Responses to Mennonite Relief Work
  • 1983  Kauffman Museum, A New Beginning


27th and North Main St.
North Newton, KS 67117
Across from the main campus of
Bethel College


(316) 283-1612
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300 E. 27th Street
North Newton, KS, 67117-1716


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