Enjoy these latest additions to our website:
Indianola – Extinct in Shawnee County – (Legends of Kansas) Indianola, Kansas in Shawnee County was situated at the crossing of Soldier Creek on the Fort Leavenworth-Fort Riley Military Road.
Emerald – Extinct in Anderson County – (Legends of Kansas) Located on Iantha Creek on the Anderson-Franklin border the community was first settled by immigrants from old Ireland or the Emerald Isle in 1856.
Leavenworth County – (Legends of Kansas) The first whites to visit Leavenworth County were the French traders and explorers who came up the Missouri River early in the 18th century. The first European settlement in the area was Fort de Cavagnial, built in 1744.
Jarbalo – (Legends of Kansas) Jarbalo, Kansas, is a very small town in Leavenworth County. Because it no longer has a post office, it is officially an extinct town today.
Smallpox and America’s First Medical Mandate – General Washington issued the first medical mandate in America, a military order to inoculate all soldiers against smallpox in 1777.
Vieux Crossing, Kansas – On the Oregon Trail – The crossing was utilized by travelers as early as 1819, when Thomas Say, a member of Stephen H. Long’s expedition, camped near the crossing. By the 1840s, it was regularly used. Kit Carson and John C. Fremont crossed here in 1842 and the Donner Party in 1846.
Log Chain Kansas – (Legends of Kansas) Log Chain was the next station on the line west of the Kickapoo/Goteschall Station, which was on the Overland Trail. An eating station on the line, it was also kept by Noble H. Rising.
Richmond – (Legends of Kansas) Extinct in Nemaha County – Richmond, Kansas in Nemaha County was settled in 1854 by Cyrus Dolman. It is an extinct town today. It was located on the Fort Leavenworth-Fort Kearny Military Road at the crossing of the South Fork of the Nemaha River.
June Newsletter – A salute to the United States Flag, Kansas Adventures, Witness to Little Big Horn & Pony up to the bar in this month’s newsletter.
Trego County – (Legends of Kansas) Trego County includes several sites listed on the National Register of Historic Places, including the Collyer Downtown Historic District, St. Michael School & Convent in Collyer, and the one-room Wilcox School south of WaKeeney.
Cedar Bluff Reservoir – (Legends of Kansas) The reservoir was built and is managed by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation for irrigation, area water supply, and flood control. It also serves visitors with recreation opportunities, and Cedar Bluff State Park is located on its shore.
Bluffton Station on the Smoky Hill Trail – (Legends of Kansas) The station was named for its location beneath an almost perpendicular 75-foot bluff. Here, several travelers inscribed their names to such an extent that it was said that the pillar rivaled Independence Rock in Wyoming for names per square foot.
Wilcox – Extinct in Trego County – (Legends of Kansas) A post office was established on April 30, 1879, on land provided by William K. Willcox. The second ‘L” was later dropped from the original spelling of Willcox.
Hickory Point – Extinct in Jefferson County – (Legends of Kansas) The community of Hickory Point was laid out in March 1855 on the north side of the Fort Leavenworth–Fort Riley military road. From the beginning, a contest arose between the Free-State and pro-slavery residents of the area.
Easton, Kansas – (Legends of Kansas) In the early autumn of 1854, Andrew Dawson, Colonel William G. Mathias, General L. J. Eastin, and others laid out the village of “Eastin,” named for General L. J. Eastin, the editor of the Leavenworth Weekly Herald newspaper.
Buckcreek, Kansas – Extinct in Jefferson County – (Legends of Kansas) More than 20 years after the school was established, a post office opened in Buckcreek on May 15, 1899. However, its life was short-lived. It closed on December 31, 1905.
Thompsonville, Kansas – Extinct in Jefferson County – (Legends of Kansas) Thompsonville, Kansas, was a hamlet located on the Delaware River in Kentucky Township of Jefferson County.
One Room, Country, & Historic Schools of Cherokee County – (Legends of Kansas) There are several historic one-room schools in Cherokee County, Kansas.
Agnes City – (Legends of Kansas) Agnes City, Kansas, in Lyon County, was founded by Arthur Inghram Baker about eight miles east of Council Grove in 1856.
Anderson County Kansas – (Legends of Kansas) Anderson County, located in East Central Kansas, was established while Kansas was still a territory in 1855. It was one of the 33 original counties established.
The Flint Hills Of Kansas – (Legends of Kansas) The Flint Hills, historically known as Bluestem Pastures or Blue Stem Hills, is a region in eastern Kansas and north-central Oklahoma. It was named for the abundant flint eroded from the bedrock near or at the surface.
Litchfield – (Legends of Kansas) Litchfield, Kansas was a busy coal-mining town on Carbon Creek in Crawford County. At one point, it was shipping about 500 carloads of coal each month. It’s gone today.
Arcadia – (Legends of Kansas) A man named Howell was the first to settle here near Coxe’s Creek and opened a blacksmith shop in 1844. He had married a Cherokee Indian woman, which gave him the right to live in the Indian lands. He also built a double log house.
Cato – Extinct in Crawford County – (Legends of Kansas) Cato was full of firsts. It was here that the first white child was born in Crawford County, the first fraternal organization was formed, the first school was located, the first church was founded, the first Sunday School was organized, the first coal mining operation, and the first County Fair. It was also the home to Nels Smith, Crawford County’s first millionaire.
Croweburg – (Legends of Kansas) Located halfway between Arma and Mulberry, Croweburg was made up of four separate mining camps. Each camp was about a half-mile apart from one another, and the community unified as Croweburg.
Clinton Lake – (Legends of Kansas) This area of the Wakarusa Valley had a history of flooding before the construction of Clinton Lake which had devastated the former towns of Belvoir, Bloomington, and Sigil in Douglas County, and Richland in Shawnee County numerous times.
One Room, Country & Historic Schools of Douglas County – (Legends of Kansas) The first immigrant party, made up of 29 men arrived in Lawrence in August 1854. Though their primary mission was to ensure slavery would be illegal in Kansas, it was written into their original petition that immigrants coming to Kansas Territory would be provided with public education.
April Newsletter – Quest for Treasure on the Missouri, Aliens & Outlaws (2008 Adventure), Cynthia Ann Parker, Memories of more past adventures all in this month’s Newsletter.
Coal Mining In Kansas – (Legends of Kansas) Coal mining has been going on in Kansas as early as 1827. Bituminous coal deposits were widely distributed in eastern Kansas.
Twin Mound – Extinct in Douglas County – (Legends of Kansas) Twin Mound is an extinct town in western Douglas County, Kansas, founded by Henry Hiatt, an Indiana native who arrived with his wife, five children, and widowed mother-in-law in Kansas Territory in April 1856.
Pitty Pat Hollow – Tennessee Lore – The pitty-pat is a shadowy creature that has inhabited that area since the late 1860s and has been the subject of ridicule, however, for many people who have encountered the pitty-pat, there is a sense of total belief and fear in its existence.
Tall Grass Prairie Preserve – (Legends of Kansas) Located in the Flint Hills, two miles north of Strong City, Kansas, this 10,894-acre portion of the once vast tallgrass prairie is preserved for this generation’s benefit, education, and enjoyment.
Bazaar, Kansas – (Legends of Kansas) Bazaar, Kansas is an unincorporated ghost town located in the picturesque Flint Hills of Chase County. One of the oldest towns in the county, the settlement got its start in March 1856 on Rock Creek on an old trail that ran south from Cottonwood Falls.
Fulton, Kansas – (Legends of Kansas) Fulton, Kansas, a tiny town in northeast Bourbon County, was established in 1869. The town was first called Osaga for the Little Osage River that runs north of the town.
Rapp Schoolhouse – (Legends of Kansas) The old Rapp Schoolhouse in Osage County, Kansas, is one of the few, if not the only one-room eight-grade schoolhouses in the state that still has its original desks and textbooks.
Chingawassa Springs, Kansas – (Legends of Kansas) This group of several springs were renamed in the late 1800s after Osage Indian Chief Chingawassa, meaning Handsome Bird.
Aliens & Outlaws – Our 2008 Adventure in Southern New Mexico – (Travel Blog) In February 2008, while Dave was still working in the corporate world, we took a flight out to El Paso from Missouri, rented a Jeep, and traveled through history in Southern New Mexico.
Arvonia – Lost on the Prairie – (Legends of Kansas) An extinct town today, Arvonia was settled in 1869, by a company of Welsh people led by John Mather Jones. From Utica, New York, Jones was the owner of a Welsh-language newspaper.
Quest for Treasure in the Missouri River – Author Jerry Walker Sr. brings us the true story of the unsuccessful attempt at raising the sunken boat, the Pontiac, from the Missouri River in the 1880s.
Glasco – (Legends of Kansas) In November 2002, Glasco’s Downtown Historic District was placed on the National Register of Historic Places. It includes both sides of Main Street between Fisher Street and Railroad Avenue.
March Newsletter – Mining on Mount Irish, Adventure in Flour Power, Native Remedies, Women’s History Month and more! in this month’s newsletter.
Logan City, Nevada – Mining on Mount Irish – Logan City, Nevada was settled in 1865 after the discovery of silver on the eastern slope of Mount Irish, about 2.5 miles south of Mount Irish Peak. Today it’s a ghost town.
Ashland Colony – (Legends of Kansas) The Ashland Colony, sometimes called Ashland Bottoms, was initially established in Geary County, Kansas, within a few months after the passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Bill.
Johnson County Border Troubles – (Legends of Kansas) Johnson County, like other eastern parts of Kansas, was caught up in border troubles with Missouri after Kansas Territory was created and into the Civil War.
Bennie and Stella Dickson – Depression Era Bank Robbers – Bennie and Stella Dickson were a husband and wife team who turned to a life of crime shortly after their marriage. It put them in the crosshairs of the FBI.
Hoisington – (Legends of Kansas) Established around 1886, Hoisington was a big railroad stop for the Missouri Pacific Railroad.
Fort Hays State University – (Legends of Kansas) In 1901 the legislature passed legislation establishing the Fort Hays Experiment Station (part of Kansas State University) and set apart about 4,000 acres for the Western Branch State Normal School.
Arkansas City – (Legends of Kansas) The founders of Arkansas City arrived at the site on January 1, 1870, and a settlement called Walnut City was platted the same year.
Martin Parmer – Woodsman Turned Texas Hero – Martin Van Buren Parmer was a frontiersman, soldier, a founder of Missouri, a veteran of the Texas Revolution, and a signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence.
John Geary – (Legends of Kansas) John White Geary was the third Territorial Governor of Kansas, a lawyer, a Union general in the Civil War, and the 16th governor of Pennsylvania.
Blue Lodges Against Freedom – (Legends of Kansas) Many of these lodges were established in western Missouri in 1854 to thwart Northern anti-slavery plans to make Kansas a Free-State under the Kansas-Nebraska Act.
Charles Keemle – Charles Keemle was a journalist, fur trader, and Indian fighter who had a hand in many newspapers in St. Louis.
Sunflower Ordnance Works & Village – (Legends of Kansas) Sunflower Ordnance Works was a powder and propellant manufacturing facility in northwest Johnson County, Kansas. It was established in 1942 on 9,063 acres, three miles south of De Soto.
Stilwell, Kansas – Johnson County Neighborhood – (Legends of Kansas) Much of the small downtown was burned in a fire in about 1925, from which it never completely recovered. Today, there are only a few structures left standing.
Ocheltree – (Legends of Kansas) Ocheltree, Kansas was a village in the extreme southern part of Johnson County. Located two miles north of Spring Hill, and about eight miles south of Olathe, the town is extinct today.
February Newsletter – Deep in the heart of Texas, extinct towns of Johnson County Kansas, Black History Month, and more! In this month’s Newsletter.
I Wanna Be a Cowboy…In Bandera – (Travel Blog) – and then San Felipe de Austin, the original Texas Capital before Texas was..well, Texas. We cowboyed up in the Cowboy Capital, then traveled to the original Texas Colony on a lone star adventure.
Monticello, Kansas – (Legends of Kansas) Monticello, Kansas, is an extinct town in northern Johnson County. This heavily timbered area was originally home to the Shawnee Indians.
Chouteau, Kansas – Long Lost Trading Post – (Legends of Kansas) Choteau, Kansas, once a hamlet of Johnson County, got its start as a trading post along the Kansas River. It is an extinct town today.
William Whitney Brazelton – William Whitney Brazelton, also known as “Brazen Bill,” was a stagecoach robber who operated in Arizona and New Mexico in the days of the Wild West.
Sheppard Busby – Marshal Hanged – Sheppard Busby was a U.S. Deputy Marshal commissioned in the Western District of Arkansas, and the only U.S. Deputy marshal to be hanged at Fort Smith.
Oxford, Kansas and the Oxford Fraud – (Legends of Kansas) Today there is no marker or monument to commemorate the old town of Oxford that once stood, but the important history here has been felt for generations.
Bonita, Kansas – Extinct in Johnson County – (Legends of Kansas) The first settlement was made by Frank Temple and William Jobi, on October 17, 1879, and a post office was established in December 1879, with F. Gilbert as the first postmaster.
Holliday, Kansas – Lost Town to Landfill – (Legends of Kansas) First called Waseca, the town was platted in 1882 and received a post office on June 26, 1882.
Aubry, Kansas – Bleeding Kansas Battleground – (Legends of Kansas) Aubry, Kansas, located in southeastern Johnson County was once a bloody battleground during the border troubles of the Civil War.
Happy New Year! – Our final newsletter of 2021 looks back at our top three adventures over the last year.
Last Major American Train Robbery – The last major American train robbery was attempted on November 25, 1937, on a Southern Pacific Railroad’s westbound Apache Limited out of El Paso, Texas.
Archaic Period in American History – Archaic cultures are defined by common characteristics rather than a particular time or location. The primary characteristics are changes in subsistence and lifestyle.
December Newsletter – Origins of the Ghost Dance, Disaster in Ashtabula, Largest Stone Fort in America, a Pioneer Christmas, and MORE in this month’s newsletter.
Jones & Plummer Trail – This trail was established in the fall of 1874 when two former buffalo hunters turned merchants and freighters, opened a dugout store in the Texas Panhandle.
Pullman, Illinois – A Model Company Town – Pullman, Illinois, developed in the 1880s just outside the Chicago city limits, was one of the largest and most substantial early company towns in the United States.
Appomattox Court House National Historical Park, Virginia – Appomattox Court House National Park in Virginia commemorates the surrender of Confederate General Robert E. Lee to Union General Ulysses S. Grant.
Native American Smudging – Smudging is a ritualistic burning of herbs and plants to purify and cleanse negative energy, bring good luck, and protect a person or place.
West Virginia Coal Mining – A large part of West Virginia’s heritage is its coal mining history. Coal has contributed significantly to the state’s economic, political, and social history since it was first discovered in Boone County in 1742.
- West Virginia Coal Mine Disasters – Coal mining in West Virginia has always been a risky profession, especially before 1920, when laws had not been created to improve and monitor mine safety. During those years, working as a coal miner was an extremely unhealthy and dangerous occupation.
- West Virginia Mine Wars – The West Virginia mine wars, also known as the “coal wars,” were conflicts that arose out of disputes between coal companies and miners.
- Hawk’s Nest Strike – First Strike in West Virginia – The Hawks Nest Coal Company strike in January 1880 was the first of many coal mining strikes in West Virginia.
- Paint Creek & Cabin Creek Strike of West Virginia – The Paint Creek-Cabin Creek Strike of 1912–13 was one of the most dramatic and bloody conflicts in the southern West Virginia Mine Wars.
Company Towns of America – In many cases, these towns were developed in remote locations to service mining, railroad construction, logging, dam sites, factories, and war-industry camps. Far from other established towns, the companies generally owned all the buildings, businesses, and homes.
Joseph “Rowdy Joe” Lowe – Saloon Gunfighter – After serving in the Union during the war, he was mustered out and he and his wife, Kate Daniels, better known as “Rowdy Kate,” moved from Illinois to Kansas, where they would roam through several cowtowns establishing several bawdy joints.
Sweet Virginia – Saving Our Nation More than Once – (from our Photo Travel Blog) – Virginia can lay claim to being the beginning, and end of British Colonialism, and the savior of our nation during the Civil War.
Fort Monroe, Virginia – Fort Monroe is a military installation overlooking the Chesapeake Bay in Hampton Roads, Virginia. The largest stone fort ever built in the United States, it is also the only moat-encircled fort remaining in active duty.
October Newsletter – From a scenic drive to a ghostly tale, a West Virginia ghost town to some really big stuff, all in our latest newsletter.
Thurmond, West Virginia – Most Thurmond property is owned by the National Park today. The entire town is a designated historic district on the National Register of Historic Places. Thurmond is the least-populous municipality in West Virginia.
Finding Our Lumps in West Virginia (From our Photo Travel Blog) – Exploring mining towns of West Virginia, we discovered just how hard a life it is to be a coal miner. We also found a really long arch bridge.
Chillicothe, Ohio – Chillicothe, Ohio, the county seat of Ross County was the first territorial capital and the first and third state capital of Ohio.
From the National Road to Worlds Largest Stuff in the Land of Lincoln – (From our Photo Travel Blog) We found ourselves on the Cumberland Road, the first national highway, as we ventured across Illinois. We also discovered BIG things in Casey.
Fort Leavenworth-Fort Gibson Military Road – The Fort Leavenworth-Fort Gibson Military Road was created in 1837 and designated as the “permanent Indian Frontier” borderline.
September Newsletter – Another mountain adventure, Native American Ordeals, Stuckey’s Stuckey’s Everywhere, Two heads are better than one, and more in this month’s newsletter.
San Luis Valley, Colorado – Much of the beautiful landscape remains largely unchanged, where visitors can enjoy mountain biking, scenic hikes, skiing, fishing, camping, and other activities along the Reio grande, the beautiful Sangre de Cristo mountains, and Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve.
Bent’s Fort – Trading on the Trails – (From our Photo Travel Blog) – Bent’s Old Fort is a must-see stop if you are in Southeastern Colorado. The old trading post played a large role on the Santa Fe Trail.
On the Road – Cimarron and the Santa Fe Trail – (From our Photo Travel Blog) While we were in the Eagle Nest and Moreno Valley area, we took a trip westward through Cimarron Canyon to the historic Santa Fe Trail at Cimarron, New Mexico.
Costilla, New Mexico – Along with nearby Amalia, New Mexico, and Garcia, Colorado, Costilla was founded as a farming and ranching community in the early 1800s.
Questa, New Mexico – A Mining Maven – Located in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, Questa, is a village in northern Taos County. The village is on the Enchanted Circle Scenic Byway, near the confluence of the Rio Grande and the Red River.
On the Road – The Beauty & History of New Mexico’s Moreno Valley – In our latest Travel Blog, we revisit the beauty and history of the Moreno Valley.
July Newsletter – Magical Shrine in New Mexico, General Order No. 11, Dakota War of 1862, 200th Anniversary of the Santa Fe Trail, and much more in this month’s newsletter.
Chimayó, New Mexico – Land of Healing – El Santuario de Chimayó, north of Santa Fe, New Mexico, attracts hundreds of thousands each year to its alleged healing earth.
Kansas Transportation History – (From our Legends of Kansas pages) From horses to covered wagons, steamboats, and railroads, this is the history of Kansas Transportation.
James H. “Dog” Kelly – (From our Legends of Kansas pages) James H. “Dog” Kelley was the Dodge City, Kansas mayor when several of the Old West’s most famous lawmen worked under him, including Bat, James, and Ed Masterson, as well as Wyatt and Morgan Earp.
Colby, Kansas – (From our Legends of Kansas pages) Despite its location, a major drought, and the dust bowl, Colby has held its own in Northwest Kansas as the Thomas County Seat.
Clayton, Kansas – (From our Legends of Kansas pages) Clayton, Kansas, is a semi-ghost town located primarily in Norton County but also in Decatur County. It is known for a horrific train crash in 1910 that killed and injured many passengers.
Paola, Kansas – (From our Legends of Kansas pages) By the 1840s, white settlers began to move to the area, and several missionaries lived in and near “Peoria Village.” In 1852, an Italian Priest named Paul D. Ponziglione arrived and renamed the village Paola after a small town on the coast of Calabria, Italy.
Black Friday Flood of 1951 – (From our Legends of Kansas pages) “Black Friday,” July 13, 1951, still stands as the single greatest day of flood destruction in Kansas.
Big Dam Foolishness at Tuttle Creek – (From our Legends of Kansas pages) Though there were 25 floods that damaged the area and cities downstream between the years 1903 to 1959, there was much opposition to building the dam that created the lake.
More Kansas Emerging Ghost Towns of the Plains (From our Legends of Kansas pages) :
Cottonwood Falls – The first settlement in the Cottonwood Falls area began in 1854 when an Indian trader named Seth Hays founded a cattle ranch on the Cottonwood River close to the mouth of the Diamond Spring Creak.
Green – Governor Green offered to buy a bell for the first Methodist Church to be established in a town named Green. The bell is still there today.
June Newsletter – Happy Birthday America! Meandering around Kansas, Colonial Williamsburg, Walnut Grove Dam Disaster, and much more! in this month’s newsletter.
To see what else you might have missed, check out our archive of newsletters here.