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Golden Rule Days

Golden Rule Days: History and Recollections of 109 Closed Kansas High Schools

Golden Rule Days by James Kenyon
Winner of the 2019 Martin Kansas History Book Award
Click here for a sample of the book.

Meadowlark- May 2019
ISBN: 978-1-7322410-4-6
BISAC: Regional Nonfiction
Retail: $20.00


Meadowlark- May 2019
ISBN: 978-1-7322410-4-6
BISAC: Regional Nonfiction


James Kenyon made twelve trips across Kansas to visit every county in the state, collecting stories of former Kansas high schools as he went and sharing his appreciation for small town life. Born and raised on a third-generation family grain and livestock farm near the town of Bogue, Kansas, population 300, his roots make him a natural candidate for recording the histories and stories of these schools. From his grandfather, John Gibbins, who was the superintendent of four high schools in Kansas and a college professor, to his three aunts and two sisters who were teachers, James was raised in a community that valued education.


“You’ll read this book and quickly become absorbed in the stories, the people, and the buildings. . . James Kenyon did a phenomenal amount of research to gather all of this information to be saved and savored for decades to come. I am grateful to James for bringing one last bit of glory to all of these small schools that once meant so much to our communities.”

          --Marci Penner, director/author, Kansas Sampler Foundation

“. . . a fascinating book for the countless Kansans who were heartbroken when their high schools closed . . . I was pleased that my own hometown, Pawnee Rock, was one of his highlighted schools. It was a painful time for our community. Those who were directly affected by these closures will treasure this book, and the nuggets of small-town history will make this a treasure for anyone interested in the Kansas experience.”

          --Cheryl Unruh, author of Flyover People: Life on the Ground in a Rectangular State, Waiting on the Sky: More Kansas Essays, and Walking on Water

“Author-detective-explorer-historian James Kenyon has created a treasure trove of memories and discoveries about hometown high schools now lost to school consolidation and unification. In a dozen trips over 15 months to his home state, Kenyon uncovered fascinating facts, photographs and anecdotes about high schools in every Kansas county that have been lost to history.”

          --Dave Webb, co-author of 999 Kansas Characters: Ad Astra, a 2015 Kansas Notable Book

 “Driving through Kansas, I often glanced at small town high schools; closed but full of stories of students . . . James Kenyon literally ‘brought to life’ the tremendous impact that rural public schools made on their residents and generations to follow. His incredible research produced one of the most enjoyable books I have read.”

          --Floyd Winter, retired Iowa School Administrator

January 11, 2020
Now That's Rural: Graham Co's James Kenyon, Golden Rule Days - Hays Post

October 2019
Martin Kansas History Book Award - Kansas Authors Club

August 30, 2019
Retired Veterinarian Pens Books - Waterloo-Cedar Falls, Iowa

July 19, 2019
Bogue Native, Retired Veterinarian, to speak in McCracken - Hays Post, Kansas

June 20, 2019
Florence High featured in book - Marion County Record
Florence High featured in book - Peabody Gazette Bulletin

May 31, 2019
Book on closed Kansas high schools includes Longford HS - Clay Center Dispatch

May 22, 2019
Richmond museum opens Saturday - The Ottawa Herald

May 17, 2019
Book covering closed Kansas schools hits shelves - The Emporia Gazette


  1. Tracy-
    I have continued admiration in your work, marketing, and publishing. Kansas and the authors of the state have a remarkable gem and we thank you for your dedication and contribution for the literary advancement for all.

    1. Thank you! Your kind words mean so much to me. ~TRMS