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Kansas Historical Markers - A

Allen County


Boyhood Home of General FunstonFrederick Funston, five feet four and slightly built, went from this farm to a life of amazing adventure. Youthful exploring expeditions in this country were followed by two years in the Arctic from which he returned down the Yukon river 1,500 miles by canoe. After ventures in Latin America, he served 18 months with Cuban Insurgents, fighting in 22 engagements and reaching the rank of lieutenant colonel. Invalided home shortly before the Spanish-American War, Funston was made colonel of the 20th Kansas infantry. In 1901 he planned and executed the capture of Aguinaldo, commander of the Filipino army. He receivied a Congressional Medal of Honor and at 35 was made a brigadier general in the reqular army. In 1914, during intervention in Mexico, he commanded Vera Cruz as military governor and was that year made a major general. He died in 1917. This was the home of his father, Edward H. Funston, a member of Congress, 1884-1894.

Allen County
Town square, three blocks east of US-169, Iola

Anderson County

No historic markers currently are located in this county.

Atchison County


Long before white men settled Kansas, traffic over the Santa Fe trail was so heavy that troops were detailed to protect it from the Indians. Fort Leavenworth, established in 1827 by Col. Henry Leavenworth, was for thirty years the chief base of operations on the Indian frontier. In 1829, Col. S. W. Kearny march against the Cherokees with the largest U. S. mounted force yet assembled: ten companies of dragoons. In 1846, Col. A. W. Doniphan set out on his Mexican expedition; throughout the war with Mexico the Fort was the outfitting post of the Army of the West. During the 1850s, wagon teams hauled supplies over the Santa Fe, Oregon and other trails to all forts, posts and military camps of the West, some as far as the Pacific.

When Kansas territory was organized in 1854, Gov. Andrew Reeder set up executive offices at Fort Leavenworth. In 1881, Gen. William T. Sherman established the school which later became the Command and General Staff College, the highest tactical school in the Army educational system combining all arms and services. A 1926 graduate, with highest honors in his class, was Maj. Dwight D. Eisenhower.

See also Leavenworth County marker number 4(A).

K-7/US-73, Atchison County
Turnout, 11 miles northwest of city of Leavenworth.


On July 4, 1804, Lewis and Clark exploring the new Louisiana Purchase, camped near this site. Fifty years later the town was founded by Proslavery men and named for Sen. D. R. Atchison. The Squatter Sovereign, Atchison's first newspaper, was an early advocate of violence against abolition. Here Pardee Butler, Free- State preacher, was set adrift on a river raft and on his return was tarred and feathered. Here Abraham Lincoln in 1859 "auditioned" his famous Cooper Union address ~ unmentioned by local newspapers.

During the heyday of river steamboating in the '50s Atchison became an outfitting depot for emigrant and freighting trains to Utah and the Pacific Coast, a supply base for the Pike's Peak gold rush, and in the early 1850's a starting point for the Pony Express and the Overland Stage lines. In this pioneer center of transportation the Santa Fe railway was organized in 1860, modestly named the Atchison & Topeka.

US-59, Atchison County
Roadside turnout, east of US-73 junction, Atchison


Near here, located in a grove of young hickory trees, was an important rallying point in 1855 and 1856 for members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormon), then emigrating to the Rocky Mountains.

The campground, really a temporary village covering about 150 acres, consisted of the grove, a large pasture fenced by native sod and a ditch, and a burial ground located on the elevated ridge between the grove and the farm.  Though one or two permanent structures were erected, most residents lived in tents, wagon boxes or make-shift dwellings.

During the peak year of emigration at Mormon Grove in 1855, nearly 2,000 Latter-Day Saints with 337 wagons left here for the Salt Lake Valley.  It was also a tragic year for the U.S., British, and European Mormons at the little way station, many dying in a cholera epidemic.

In 1856, Iowa City, Iowa, became the major jump-off point for Latter-Day Saint westward travel, and Mormon Grove became a forgotten gathering place.

US-73, Atchison County
Roadside turnout, west of Atchison

Barber County


Carry A. Nation, the militant crusader against illegal saloons, launched her career of saloon-smashing in Kiowa. She and her followers in Medicine Lodge, her home town, had closed the local saloons by holding prayer meetings on their premises and displays of force. However, as the Women's Christian Temperance Unions jail evangelist, she found as many drunks as ever in the county jail. These men named Kiowa as their source of supply.

A voice spoke to Carry, telling her to go to Kiowa and smash the saloons. On June 1, 1900, she attacked three "joints" in Kiowa, using stones, brickbats, full malt bottles, and one billiard ball as ammunition. Carry's attack surprised local officials, but because of the fact that the operation of such "joints" was illegal she was not jailed as she would be later in other communities. She did not adopt the use of her now famous hatchet until her visit to Wichita some six months later.

The Kiowa attack quickly received national attention and instigated great debate even among the temperance organizations. Carry Nation spent the remainder of her life in the crusade against the liquor interests and lecturing on prohibition. She died June 9, 1911.

K-8, Barber County
South edge of Kiowa