History of Atchison, Kansas

Atchison, the county seat of Atchison County, is located about 60 miles from Topeka on the banks of the Missouri River. The first white settlers arrived in 1854, consisting mostly of immigrants from Missouri. During the run-up to the Civil War, Atchison was a center of support for the pro-slavery forces. The Squatter Sovereign, a vigorously antiabolitionist journal, was published in Atchison at this time.

Atchison was incorporated in 1855 as a town and in 1859 as a city. During the boom period of overland stage operations, Atchison was connected to Placerville, California, by one of the longest and most importnat lines in the country.

The Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railroad was chartered by the state of Kansas in 1859 and organized in Atchison in 1860. Construction of the railroad didn't actually start until 1868, but soon Atchison became a hub with eight railroad lines terminating in the city by 1872. During the latter part of the century, Atchison was one of the principal cities of Kansas. John Seaton's foundry alone employed 2000 men by 1894.

One of Atchison's most famous citizens was Amelia Earhart, born in the city in 1897. The house where she was born is now the Amelia Earhart Birthplace Museum. The Atchison County Historical Museum occupies the old Santa Fe railroad depot. The Atchison Railroad Museum is the home of the 811 steam engine.

Two Roman Catholic colleges were founded in Atchison. One was St. Benedict's, a college for men, another was Mount St. Scholastica College for women. In 1971, they combined to form Benedictine College. Atchison also has campuses of Highland Community College and Northeast Kansas Technical College.

Atchison's first hospital was opened in 1884 and closed five years later. The current Atchison Hospital traces its origins to 1914.

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Amelia Earhart Birthplace Museum - Atchison, Kansas
Amelia Earhart Birthplace Museum 223 North Terrace Street Atchison, Kansas 66002 (913) 367-4217 February 15 through December 15 Open until 4 PM daily Adults: $3 12 and younger : $.50 View of the Missouri River, the 1938 AmAtchison, Kansas 66002 (913) 367-4217 February 15 through December 15 Open until 4 PM daily Adults: $3 12 and younger : $.50 View of the Missouri River, the 1938 Amelia Earhart ...

... and State Highway Commission Historical marker on US-591 mile west of Atchison, Atchison County Marker text sent by Mike LeMasters, Wichita, KS MoreMarkers February 2, 1999 / Bob Walter / Wichita, Kansas / history@kslib.info Visit the Home ...

Atchison County
1883) is made available for worldwide web access in the KANSAS COLLECTION by these EKIS volunteers -- TRANSCRIBER:KATHRYN CONE Acquisition: Copy & Distribution: HTML coding: HTML menu: Bob Mills Bob Mills John Matthews John Matthews November 1997 ...