Strengthen The Arm of Liberty: Parsons

2719 Main Street

The statue is located on the southwest corner of 28th and Main, in front of Parsons Middle School. It was dedicated in 1950.

Parsons was named for the president of the Missouri, Kansas & Texas Railroad, Levi Parsons. It was incorporated in 1871. 

Among Parson’s famous residents:

Walter Davidson, Sr. the co-founder of Harley-Davidson Motor Company.  According to the Harley-Davidson archives, a letter was sent to Walter while he was working in Parsons to join the family in building a motorcycle.

Ajit Pai, former FCC Chairman, Pai grew up in Parsons, Kansas. He was the first Indian American to hold the office.

George Pepperdine, founder of Western Auto and Pepperdine University.  George Pepperdine was born on June 20, 1886, on a farm in Mound Valley, KS. He graduated from Parsons Business College in Parsons, Kansas.

Levi Watkins, heart surgeon and civil rights activist. Watkins was born in Parsons, KS on June 13, 1944

He served as a volunteer driver for Martin Luther King Jr.

In February 1980, Dr. Watkins and Dr. Vivien Thomas were the first doctors to successfully implant an automatic defibrillator in a human. 

Watkins also spent much of his career helping with AIDS research. 

Find out more about the Strengthen the Arm of Liberty Statues across Kansas.

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