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High Quality Content by WIKIPEDIA articles! Kansas (en-us-Kansas.ogg /'kænzs/ (help·info)) is a state located in the Midwestern United States. It is named after the Kansas River which flows through it, which in turn was named after the Kansa tribe, who inhabited the area. The tribe's name (natively kka:ze) is often said to mean 'people of the wind' or 'people of the south wind,' although this was probably not the term's original meaning. Residents of Kansas are called 'Kansans.' Historically, the area was home to large numbers of nomadic Native Americans who hunted bison. It was first settled by European Americans in the 1830s, but the pace of settlement accelerated in the 1850s, in the midst of political wars over the slavery issue.