GREELEY COUNTY, KANSAS

HISTORY

 

GREELEY COUNTY, one of the western tier, is located midway between Oklahoma and Nebraska. It is bounded on the north by Wallace county, on the east by Wichita, on the south by Hamilton, and on the west by the State of Colorado. It is crossed by the 5th guide meridian west. Greeley was the last county in the state to be organized. In 1879, it was created and the boundaries fixed as follows: "Commencing at the intersetion of the east line of range 39 west, with the 3d standard parallel; thence south along said range line to where it intersects the 4th standard parallel; thence west along said 4th standard parallel to the west boundary line of the State of Kansas; thence north along said west boundary line of the state to where it is intersected by the 3rd standara parallel; thence east to the place of beginning."

In 1887 C. O. McDowell was appointed census taker, and his report in June of that year showed that there were 2,638 inhabitants of whom 475 were householders, and $251,169 worth of taxable property. An injunction suit was filed to prevent the organization of the county on the charges of bribery and fraud in the census. The injunction was not granted and the proclamation of organization was made by Gov. Martin in July, 1888. Tribune was nmaed as the temporary county seat. The other candidate was Horace, about 2 miles west. The following officers were appointed: County clerk, James W. Brown; Sheriff, Allen E. Webb; commissioners, A. J. Rymph, A. K. Webb and R. Q. Thompson. The election to decide the location of the county seat was held in November and resulted in favor of Tribune.

The settlers were very few up to about 1885. Almost every one who came in at this time started a town, and at one time there were as many alleged towns as there were claim houses. Horace was established in June, 1886, and at the time of the county seat fight it had 300 inhabitants, a bank and a newspaper. Tribune had 200 inhabitants and a large newspaper, which was established in 1886. Colo was a little town large enough to have a newspaper. Reid was established in Sept., 1887, and inside of three months had 2 stores, one hotel, 2 restaurants and a newspaper. The Missouri Pacific railroad was built in the early days of the settlement of the county and a depot was erected at Tribune in 1887. It crosses almost directly east and west through the center.

Greeley county is divided into three townships - Colony, Harrison and Tribune. The surface is prairie and the elevation is from 3,000 to 4,000 feet. The principal stream is White Woman creek. The streams have no water in them the greater part of the year, but that there are under currents is evidenced by the fact that water is found at the depth of a few feet. The post offices are: Tribune, Horace, Hurt, Sidney, Thelma, and Youngville.

The farm products in 1910 were worth $137,346, of which the field crops amounted to over $97,000. The most valuable crop is sorghum, which is raised for forage and grain. Broom-corn, Kafir corn, barley and corn are other important crops. Live stock raising is profitable.

The population in 1910 was 1,335, which was an increase of 842 over that of 1900, or nearly 200 per cent. The school population is about 332, and there are 13 organized school districts. The value of the taxable property in 1910 was $3,351,197. The average wealth per capita is $2,720 which is several hundred dollars over the average for the state. (Cyclopedia of Kansas, Frank W. Blackmar, A. M., Ph. D., Volume I, 1912, Pages 788-790)

HORACE, an incorporated town in Greeley county, is located on the Missouri Pacific R. R. 2 miles west of Tribune, the county seat. It has a number of mercantile establishments, telegraph and express offices, and a money order post office. The population in 1910 was 189. The town was founded in June, 1886, and soon had 300 inhabitants. In 1888 it had a newspaper and a bank. It was one of the rival towns for the county seat. (Cyclopedia of Kansas, Frank W. Blackmar, A. M., Ph. D., Volume I, 1912, Page 872)

TRIBUNE, the county seat of Greeley county, is centrally located and is on the Missouri Pacific R. R. It has a bank, a newspaper (the Greeley County Republican), a hotel, a number of mercantile establishments, express and telegraph offices, and a money order post office. The population according to the census of 1910 was 158. The town was founded in 1886 and the depot was built in 1887. It was made the county seat in July, 1887, but had considerable trouble over the matter as it was twice taken to the courts. It is now an incorporated city of the third class. (Cyclopedia of Kansas, Frank W. Blackmar, A. M., Ph. D., Volume 2, 1912, Page 820)

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