Kansas City, often referred to by its initials, K.C., is the largest city in the U.S. state of Missouri and is the predominant city of a metropolitan area of more than two million people spanning the Missouri–Kansas border. It encompasses 316 square miles (820 km2) in parts of Jackson, Clay, Cass, and Platte counties. It is one of two county seats of Jackson County, the other being Independence, which is to the city's east.
Kansas City was founded in 1838 as the Town of Kansas at the confluence of the Missouri and Kansas rivers and was incorporated in its present form in 1853. Situated opposite Kansas City, Kansas, the city was the location of several battles during the Civil War, including the Battle of Westport. The city is well known for its contributions to the musical styles of jazz and blues as well as to cuisine, notably Kansas City-style barbecue. In March 2012, downtown Kansas City was selected as one of America's best downtowns by Forbes magazine for its rich culture in arts, numerous fountains, upscale shopping and various local cuisine – most notably barbecue.