Kingman County, KS.

 History  of  Adams

Another history of Adams
     Although the town of Adams wasn't laid out with lots and a main street until 1916, it was an established community by 1888 with the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railroad, the Adam's station and post office and a general mercantile store. The community was named after the first settler, Allen C. Adams, a native of Illinois and a descendent of John Quincy Adams. Mr. Adams is buried in the Hillsdale Community cemetery north of Harper. The Adams family was soon joined by the Bransons, Wentworths, and Forges.
     At first the train only stopped when flagged. Later, with an agent and depot, both a freight and passenger (Doodle-Bug in later years) made daily trips each way, hauling passengers, cream, wheat, coal, cattle, etc. Over the years, other businesses came: bank, stockyards, elevator, lumber yard, cream station, farm produce, feed store, grocery, restaurant, locksmiths, gas stations, and hardware. But most activities centered around the church and school.
     The church building was the former Norwich Baptist church which was purchased in 1914 by Mr. Shoemaker and moved to Adams for a place of worship. It was an interdenominational church with John Smart being a regular minister for a long time; other ministers followed, preaching to congregations of from 65 to 100. After discontinuing the worship services, Sunday School classes were still held until the 1980's. The building is still used by the community as the Adams 4-H Club began meeting there in the 1970's.
     By 1914 the Adams Grade School had replaced the Sunrise School ½ mile east and one mile north of Adams. The Adams High School was the first rural high school organized in Kingman County. At first, classes were held in the two semi- basement rooms of the grade school building in 1916. The high school building, which was built to the east of the grade building, was completed in 1917. Margaret Martin and George Mathers were the first two graduates in 1919.
     The Adams auditorium-gymnasium was built to the east of the high school building in 1936 and '37 for $8,000 with WPA work. For years it was the nicest and best equipped in this area with special lights and a large seating capacity. Therefore it was used for county and state events as well as for Adams school and community activities. Although the Adams High School graduated its last class in 1963 and the grade school in 1967, the community has continued using this building for many activities such as family reunions, wedding dances, and its annual first Sunday of May Homecoming dinner.
     There have been as many as twelve homes in Adams but the community includes many more homes in the surrounding agricultural area which has also had some oil development in more recent years. The community is proud to have been the home of Clyde Cessna who built his first airplane in 1910 and became the founder of Cessna Aircraft in Wichita, of Inez Wallace Young who for years was superintendent of nurses as well as administrator of the hospitals in Kingman, and of George Reida who became high school supervisor in the State Department of Education. Although never incorporated, Adams is still an active community in Canton Township seven miles west of Norwich on Highway 42.

__Submitted by Bonnie Robertson

Adapted from:
Norwich, Kansas 1885 - 1985
Used by permission
August 12, 2002 / John & Susan Howell / Wichita, Kansas /

Blue Skyways Visit the Home Page for Kansas
  A service of the Kansas State Library
Kansas on the Net