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Records from Neosho County

Creator: Neosho County (Kan.)

Date: 1862 - 1985

Level of Description: Coll./Record Group

Material Type: Government record

Call Number: Unavailable

Unit ID: 217168

Abstract: The majority of the records from Neosho County that the State Archives holds are from the various courts. These records include probate and district court records concerning marriages, wills and other estate administration information, and naturalization records for individuals becoming United States citizens, as well as Chanute City Court civil and criminal dockets. Other records from the county include land deeds and military discharge information under the Register of Deeds, as well as blueprints for the Neosho County Jail from the County Engineer. Most of the records from Neosho County are on microfilm.

Space Required/Quantity: Microfilm + volumes and oversize material.

Title (Main title): Records from Neosho County

Administrative History

Administrative History: Originally Neosho County, in southeastern Kansas, was part of Dorn County. It was established in 1855 and named for either Earl Van Dorn, an army officer during the Mexican War and Indian campaigns, or--more likely--Andrew Jackson Dorn, also a Mexican War veteran and Indian agent for the Osages, Quapaws, and Senecas and Shawnees at the Neosho Agency from 1853 to 1861. Both men joined the Confederate Army in 1861, and the county was renamed Neosho, after the river.

The word Neosho comes from the Osage Native American tribe. Some sources say it derives from the word ne-o-zho or ne-u-zhu, meaning "clear water," while others assert it comes from the Osage words ne, meaning water, and osho or ozho, meaning a bowl or basin. In the latter etymology, the river is so named from the fact that it has many deep bowls or basins of water.

Like many other counties throughout Kansas, towns competed to become the county seat. At an election held in 1867, the county seat was located at the geographical center of the county. The following year, the issue again came to a vote, the rivals being Osage Mission and Erie. Erie was declared the winner, but a subsequent recount awarded the victory to Osage Mission. The clerk's records and tax rolls were surreptitiously removed from Erie for conveyance to the Mission, but were never found. Another election and round of litigation, settled in 1874 by the Kansas Supreme Court, moved the seat back to Erie, which remains the county seat.

Chanute is the only city in the county incorporated separately from any township. Townships in Neosho County include Big Creek, Canville, Centerville, Chetopa, Erie, Grant, Ladore, Lincoln, Mission, Shiloh, Tioga, and Walnut Grove.

[Kansas State Historical Society. "Kansas Counties -- Dorn County, Kansas [defunct]." http://www.kshs.org/genealogists/places/counties.php?county=DO (accessed 8 July 2009).]

[Kansas State Historical Society. "Kansas Counties -- Neosho County, Kansas." http://www.kshs.org/genealogists/places/counties.php?county=NO (accessed 8 July 2009).]


No Locators Identified

Index Terms


    Neosho County (Kan.) -- Genealogy
    Neosho County (Kan.) -- History
    Deeds -- Kansas -- Neosho County
    Jails -- Kansas -- Neosho County
    Marriage records -- Kansas -- Neosho County
    Municipal courts -- Kansas -- Chanute
    Naturalization records -- Kansas -- Neosho County
    Probate law and practice -- Kansas -- Neosho County
    Wills -- Kansas -- Neosho County

Creators and Contributors

Agency Classification:

    Local Government Agencies. Neosho County.