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Blockhouse and guardhouse at Fort Hays, Kansas

Blockhouse and guardhouse at Fort Hays, Kansas
Date: Between 1890 and 1920
This postcard shows the old blockhouse and old guardhouse at Fort Hays, Kansas. Fort Hays was an important U.S. Army post that was active from 1865 until 1889. Originally designated Fort Fletcher (after Governor Thomas C. Fletcher of Missouri), it was located five miles south of present-day Walker and became operational on October 11, 1865. Troops stationed at Fort Fletcher were to protect the stage and freight wagons on the Butterfield Overland Dispatch (BOD) traveling along the Smoky Hill Trail to Denver. Despite the presence of the soldiers, Southern Cheyenne and Southern Arapaho Indians continued to confront traffic along the trail. David Butterfield, owner of the BOD, went bankrupt and the line was abandoned. Since the Smoky Hill Trail was no longer in use, Fort Fletcher was closed May 5, 1866. On October 11, 1866, Fort Fletcher was reopened approximately one-fourth mile north of its previous location, at the confluence of Big Creek and the North Fork of Big Creek. The Union Pacific Railway, Eastern Division, was being constructed westward roughly paralleling the Smoky Hill Trail and construction workers needed the protection of the U.S. Army. In November 1866, Fort Fletcher was renamed Fort Hays in honor of Brigadier General Alexander Hays, who was killed during the Civil War. Some of the famous figures associated with the fort included Wild Bill Hickok, Buffalo Bill Cody, General Nelson Miles, General Philip Sheridan, and Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer. It was also the home of several well-known Indian wars regiments such as the Seventh U.S. Cavalry, the Fifth U.S. Infantry, and the Tenth U.S. Cavalry, whose black troopers were better known as Buffalo Soldiers. After 25 years of service, Fort Hays was abandoned on November 8, 1889. Today four original buildings survive: the blockhouse (completed as the post headquarters in 1868), guardhouse, and two officers' quarters. After its closing, the land and buildings of Fort Hays were turned over to the Department of the Interior, which later transferred them to the state of Kansas in 1900. When Frontier Historical Park was opened at the site in 1929, only the blockhouse and guardhouse remained of the original fort buildings. The two officers' quarters had been sold at auction in 1902 and moved into town at the time the other buildings were being sold for scrap. The officers' quarters were relocated in 1964 and 1987. The visitor center was built in 1967. Today it operates as Fort Hays State Historic Site; it was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1971.


Drilling a water well

Drilling a water well
Date: 1910
In this photograph two men are drilling a water well on the Henry homestead in Hamilton County, Kansas. A team of horses, a sod house, and man standing outside a wood-frame house are also visible.


Drilling a water well on the Funston property

Drilling a water well on the Funston property
Date: 1957
Photographs showing a water well being drilled on the Funston property in Allen County, Kansas.


Drilling a well, Greeley County, Kansas

Drilling a well, Greeley County, Kansas
Date: 1910
Men use a horse and rig to drill a water well, Greeley County, Kansas.


Drought report to Governor Landon

Drought report to Governor Landon
Creator: Kansas. State Board of Agriculture. Division of Water Resources
Date: August 28, 1936
This report by Ogden Jones, a geologist for the State Board of Agriculture, includes detailed information about the effects of the drought that struck Kansas during the 1930s and spawned the Dust Bowl. Jones cites precise figures about water levels in major rivers and wells, in addition to information about crops such as winter wheat, sorghum, oats, hay, rye, and fruits (apples, grapes, etc?). The report also contains maps.


G. L. Thomas residence, Beaver County, Oklahomah

G. L. Thomas residence, Beaver County, Oklahomah
Creator: Wolf, Henry L. 1850-1924
Date: Between 1890 and 1900
This photograph shows the G. L. Thomas residence in Beaver County, Oklahoma, including a house, a well, and one outbuilding. A note on the photo indicates the property was located "on the Beaver at the mouth of the Teepee," possibly referring to the Beaver and Teepee creeks.


Hattie Parkerson at the Isaac Goodnow residence, Manhattan, Kansas

Hattie Parkerson at the Isaac Goodnow residence, Manhattan, Kansas
Date: 1938
This is a photograph of Hattie Parkerson, Isaac Goodnow's adopted niece, at the Isaac Goodnow home in Manhattan, Kansas. Isaac T. Goodnow, a native of Vermont, came to Kansas in 1855 with the New England Emigrant Aid Company. They had the idea of building a community, which would eventually become Manhattan. Goodnow became heavily involved in the free state disputes that argued whether Kansas ought to become a free or slave state. He became a co-founder and the first president of Bluemont College. Perhaps Goodnow's greatest contribution to the educational climate of Manhattan was his work in locating the Kansas Agricultural College there. The building and grounds of Bluemont College were donated to the state to serve as the foundation for the new institution, which has developed into the present-day Kansas State University. Some 82,000 acres of land were given by the federal government to support the agricultural college. Goodnow converted more than half of this acreage into much needed cash during his tenure as land agent for the college from 1867 to 1873. Goodnow spent most of his life in service to the state of Kansas, until his passing in 1894. The house that he and his wife, Ellen, occupied is now Goodnow House State Historic Site, administered by the Kansas Historical Society.


Homemade water well drilling machine, Greeley County, Kansas

Homemade water well drilling machine, Greeley County, Kansas
Date: 1936
Three children and an adult sit in front of a homemade water well drilling machine, Greeley County, Kansas.


Johannes Peter Johanson's well, McPherson County, Kansas

Johannes Peter Johanson's well, McPherson County, Kansas
Date: 1911
A photograph of a typical open well and old wooden bucket on Johannes Peter Johanson's farm. This was the first well on the Johanson farm located in Section 14, Union Township, 3 1/2 miles west of Lindsborg, McPherson County, Kansas.


John Sampson drilling a water well, Hamilton County, Kansas

John Sampson drilling a water well, Hamilton County, Kansas
Date: 1908
John Sampson drilling a water well in Hamilton County, Kansas.


Map showing locations of lakes and ponds in Kansas

Map showing locations of lakes and ponds in Kansas
Creator: Kansas. State Board of Agriculture. Division of Water Resources
Date: 1936
This map of Kansas, created by geologist Ogden Jones for the State Board of Agriculture, Division of Water Resources, depicts the lakes and farm ponds in each county. At the bottom are notations about the Kansas Emergency Relief Committee, which had allocated funds that built 95% of the farm ponds in existence. The map was included in a drought report to Governor Alf Landon, dated August 28, 1936.


Mary Leona Butler interview, Offerle, Kansas

Mary Leona Butler interview, Offerle, Kansas
Creator: Butler, Mary Leona (Erickson)
Date: March 02, 2011
This transcript of an interview with Mary Leona Butler is part of an oral history project entitled "Patterns of Change, Edwards County, Kansas 1950-1970" conducted by the Kinsley Public Library. The project was supported by a Kansas Humanities Council Heritage Grant. Butler talks of her family, education, and her memories of the Edwards County community.


Scenes of Sherman County, Kansas

Scenes of Sherman County, Kansas
Date: 1890-1940
Multiple scenes of Sherman County, Kansas.


Scenes of Sherman County, Kansas

Scenes of Sherman County, Kansas
Date: 1890-1940
Multiple scenes of Sherman County, Kansas.


Two men pulling water from a well, Logan County, Kansas

Two men pulling water from a well, Logan County, Kansas
Date: Between 1920 and 1929
This photograph shows two men pulling a bucket of water from a well in Logan County, Kansas.


Showing 1 - 15

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