Warsaw Writer Turns Travel Into Great Stories

By: 
Judy Kramer
County Reporter
Local travel journalist, Kathy Weiser-Alexander, has combined her business experience, creative talents, and a love of history and traveling, to turn her website, “www.legendsofamerica.com” from a hobby into a successful, money-making production. She has had the website for 17 years, and has been writing and editing it in the Warsaw area for 10 years. She researches her travel destinations ahead of time and begins writing about them. Then, once she travels to her destination, she meets all kinds of people and learns about historical people to include in her writings.
“I started the website in 2002 as a hobby, writing and taking photos about a place in Northeast New Mexico where my sisters and I used to visit our grandmother in the summer,” said Weiser-Alexander.”My website was called High Country Legends at the time, and as the ideas and opportunities expanded, a small business I started in 1998, called the Rocky Mountain General Store, was merged with the website.”
Weiser-Alexander met husband, David Alexander, in Kansas City in 2003. They were both native Texans, and he had a lot of technical knowledge which he brought to the website. He became her travel partner, and when he left Google, his employer, in 2009, he joined Legends of America full time.
When looking at the website, Kathy’s audiences might see a photo of her discussing Bat Masterson on American Heroes Channel (AHC), a photo of Bigfoot or Saloon Girls, or a history of Native Americans. There are extensive links for more detailed information about a subject of interest to a visitor to the website. The photos are colorful, and the articles interesting. In honor of Black History Month, current histories of Bass Reeves – Black Hero Marshal, George McJunkin – Black cowboy and History Changing Amateur Archaeologist, and Mary Ann Shadd Cary – Activist, Teacher and Writer, are featured on the website.
“What we do is plan as many trips as we can do in a year and then research before we head out,” said Weiser-Alexander. “This year we plan on spending the month of July in the east, in New York, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Virginia.”
In addition to her website, Weiser-Alexander also sells photos that she takes while on trips and she restores historic photos. She has published five books and in 2014, was featured in the cable network Investigation Discover (ID) Channel’s “Evil Kin”, episode 202 about the Bloody Benders. She and her husband both took part in Ghost Towns: America’s Lost World, a five plus hour, two-disc DVD released by Mill Creek Entertainment in April the same year. In 2015, she appeared on the American Heroes Channel in two episodes of the show “Gunslingers” discussing Bat Masterson, and Bill Doolin. In 2016 she appeared in the AHC Series “American Lawmen” in season one episode “Dallas Stoudenmire: The Hero of El Paso.” In the Spring of 2018, Mill Creek Entertainment took portions of unaired footage from her 2014 interview and created a new documentary, “Ghosts in Ghost Towns: Haunting the Wild West.” In March of  2019, she appeared in “True First,” Season One; Episode six – “Bass Reeves” on UM (Urban Movie Channel.) 
Her first book, called Great American Bars and Saloons, was published in 2006. In 2010 she co-authored Greetings from Route 66, and in 2012, publisher friends of hers took information from her website and made it into a book. It was called Old West Lawmen.  She also wrote Lynchings, Hanging’s & Vigilante Groups in 2014, and Frontier Slang, Lingo & Phrases in 2015. Her first book was published before she married David Alexander, so she hyphenates her last name with Alexander so readers know her by either name.
There is a link on the website to Legends’ General Store where books, maps and vintage magazines can be downloaded, and CD’s and DVD’s on travel, history and more can be purchased. There are also personalized products, t-shirts, posters, wall art, and more.
Weiser-Alexander moved from Texas to Kansas City when she planned to go to Kansas University. She ended up going to Baker University where she earned a Business degree. She and her husband lived in Kansas City, and spent time at their lake house in the local area for a while before moving here permanently 10 years ago. She has spent years drawing, painting and other artsy-craftsy stuff, and has more than 20 years of hands-on corporate experience. The website is now the family business, making money through the advertising of products.
Her husband looked up some data on the website and discovered that during the first 10 days of February 2020, it had 300,000 visitors. She said that if you look ahead to the end of the month it is possible that there will be 900,000 visitors.
 

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