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Seward County, Kansas

Seward County was organized on June 17, 1886, by Arthur L. Edmunds; A. D. Lamberson; John N. Kneeland; Sam Jones; Henry Larrabe; I. E. Thomas; and B. B. Gant. Containing the towns of Kismet and Liberal, the county was namded for William H. Seward, Secretary of State under Abraham Lincoln.

Each year for more than 60 years on Shrove Tuesday (which falls somewhere between mid-March and early April depending upon the Easter dates) women of Liberal compete in a timed pancake race between them and their sister city of Olney, England. Contestants must run a course flipping the pancakes along the route.

The first church was the Liberal Presbyterian, founded in 1888. The first school district was formed in Liberal in 1888.

John W. Baughman settled in the county in 1872 and began to amass large landholdings in both Kansas and Colorado. When he died in 1954 he had accumulated over 300,000 acres in the two states in addition to other interests in oil, cattle and feedlot operations. His son, Robert W. was president of Baughman Farms until his death in 1970. Long interested in history, Robert was the author of Kansas in Maps, 1961, Early Day Postoffices, 1961, and in 1963 he published the book Kansas in Newspapers for the Kansas Historical Society.

For more information see the Seward County website. There is a Seward County Historical Society, but the sources are very limited.

Entry: Seward County, Kansas

Author: Kansas Historical Society

Author information: The Kansas Historical Society is a state agency charged with actively safeguarding and sharing the state's history.

Date Created: February 2010

Date Modified: February 2012

The author of this article is solely responsible for its content.