Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Iola & Fort Scott Kansas Early Court Houses

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I love the old court houses from the early 1900s for their beautiful architecture and imposing structures. Today I want to share two from Kansas with the first being the Allen County Court House in Iola Kansas. Iola was organized in 1859 at the confluence of Elm Creek and the Neosho River with the intent to take the Allen County seat from "inconveniently located" Humboldt, which was selected in 1858 by the legislature. An election held in 1860 failed to move the county seat but the persistence of Iola residents prevailed in May of 1865 and the records and county offices were immediately move to Iola where they remain today. The 1910 census showed a population of 9,032 which was helped by the economic boom from natural gas which began around 1895. This is a circa 1918 E. C. Kropp post card of the court house.

The second court house postcard is from Fort Scott Kansas, which is the county seat of Bourbon County, and was established and garrisoned by the U.S. Army from 1842 to 1853 to assist with the protection of the Permanent Indian Frontier. The fort was abandoned in 1853 and the buildings were sold by government auction in 1855 and became the center of one of the largest towns in Kansas Territory. Kansas joined the union January 29 1861 as a free state and was the center of significant Civil War activities. The 1910 census showed a population of 10,463 helped by the town's competition with Kansas City to become the largest railroad center west of the Mississippi. This is a circa 1915 E. C. Kropp postcard of the Soldiers' Monument and Bourbon County Court House. Both of these post cards can be found in my Kansas listings along with 10,000 more postcards on my website Moody's Postcards.

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