Kansas has one hundred and five counties. Originally 33 counties were organized by the Territorial Legislature in 1855. The Chase County Courthouse in Cottonwood Falls, Kansas was built in 1873 and is the oldest operating courthouse in Kansas. As of January 1, 2009 Greeley County and the city of Tribune unified to form the Unified Government of Greeley County..
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StaffordCounty is a county located in the state of Kansas. Based on the 2010 census, the county
was 4,437. Stafford County was created on February 26,
1867. The countyseat is St. John. The county is
named for Lewis Stafford, captain of Company E, First Kansas Infantry.
Etymology - Origin of Stafford County Name
The county is named for Lewis Stafford, Captain of
Company E, First Kansas Infantry, who was accidentally killed at Young's Point,
Louisana, January 31, 1863.
Stafford County, in the southwestern section of the state, is the third county north of the Oklahoma line, and its western border is about 175 miles east of Colorado. It is bounded on the north by Barton county; on the east by Rice and Reno; on the south by Pratt, and on the west by Edwards and
Pawnee. The legislature of 1870 defined the boundaries of Stafford county and named it in honor of Capt. Lewis Stafford, of the First Kansas infantry. In 1875, in an effort to obliterate it, the legislature gave a portion to each of three surrounding counties, Pawnee, Barton and Pratt. However, a
strip 6 miles wide and 12 miles long remained and was still called Stafford. In 1879 the supreme court decided that the act of the legislature dividing the county was unconstitutional and the original boundaries were restored.
The AT&SF railroad and highway US-50 run across Stafford county,
serving Zenith, Stafford, St. John, and Macksville. Highway US 281 runs
north-south though the middle. The Missouri Pacific had track from Radium,
in northwest Stafford county through Seward, Hudson, Stafford, and Neola but
it has been abandoned.
Most of the economic life of the county involves cattle, winter
wheat, or petroleum.
The main square in St. John seems like it should have a courthouse
on it, but doesn't. Instead, the courthouse is on the southeast corner
of the square with an angled facade facing the square. Notice the older
Dillon's store on the north side of the square; its style gives a
glimpse of past retail fashion.
The Quivira National Wildlife Refuge is a 22,000 acre wonderland for
The Ida Long Goodman library in St. John is a good model for smaller
Kansas towns. By combining the city and school district libraries, both
are better than either could be alone.
Hudson is the home of a famous flour mill and is a lively,
prosperous little town. Tours of the Stafford County Flour Mills can be
arranged; call (620) 458-4121.
Zenith has a tan brick church and school (abandoned), grain
elevator, and RR tracks.
Neola, in the southeast corner, is kind of a sad place nestled in a
sandhill area beside rusting, weed-grown tracks. There's almost nothing
left of the dreams and sweat invested there.
Curtis Cafe in Stafford has hundreds of picture puzzles (assembled)
mounted on the walls.
Geography: Land and Water
As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 795 square miles (2,060 km2), of which 792 square miles (2,050 km2) is
land and 2.9 square miles (7.5 km2) (0.4%) is water.
county is located close to the center of Kansas. The county is rolling prairie. Bottom lands
make up15 per cent of the area. Timber is limited to a few cottonwoods along Rattlesnake creek, which is the
main stream. Rattlesnake creek enters in the southwest, flows northeast
across the center of the county and leaves at the northeast corner. There is an
abundance of building stone, clay for bricks and gypsum. There is a salt marsh
located in the northeast part of this county.
Bordering counties are as follows:
Barton County (north)
Rice County (northeast)
Reno County (east)
Pratt County (south)
Edwards County (west)
Pawnee County (west)
Unified School Districts
Stafford USD 349
St. John-Hudson USD 350
Macksville USD 351