County Seat: St. John
· 5,365 (1990)
· 9,829 (1900)
Area: 788 Square Miles
Standard Abbreviation: SF
Stafford County Courthouse
Stafford county is mostly flat country with occasional clumps
of grass-covered sand dunes. The eastern part has marshy areas
that are home to millions of waterfowl. The gentle North Fork
of the Ninnescah river meanders across the southeast quadrant.
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
- 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.
Organized in 1873.
County seat St. John.
In memory of Lewis Stafford, Captain of Company E,
First Kansas Infantry, who was accidentally killed
at Young's Point, La., January 31, 1863.
Map and text from History of Kansas,
Noble Prentis, (Winfield: E.P. Greer. 1899)
William G. Cutler's History of Kansas
, first published in 1883, tells about early Stafford County
The Kansas State Historical Society also has
for Stafford County online including a rich bibliography and
lists of cemeteries, post offices, and newspapers.
The Special Collections of the Ablah Library at WSU contain historical images of
Cities, Towns, & Villages of Stafford County
Year Elev Population Name ZIP
==== ==== ============== ================ =====
1865 159 Hudson 67545
1879 2035 488 Macksville 67557
1951 47 Radium 67550
1879 1909 1357 St. John 67576
1913 71 Seward 67577
1878 1858 1344 Stafford 67578
Census Bureau Profile & Map
Special Events in Stafford County
- The Stafford County Fair is held the 3rd week of July.
- The St. John Jubilee is Memorial Day weekend.
- Stafford celebrates Oktoberfest on the first Saturday of the month.
- Christmas Wonderland in Stafford begins the week of Thanksgiving and
runs Thursdays through Sundays until December 25th.
Stafford County School Systems
- Stafford District Hospital (620) 234-5221
502 S. Buckeye / Stafford, KS 67578
More Data About Stafford County
- Kansas County Profile Reports
Statistical data from The Institute for Policy and Social Research, the University of Kansas
- Harper, Steve. 83,000 Square Miles
(Wichita: The Eagle and Beacon Publishing Co. 1990)
- WPA. The WPA Guide to 1930s Kansas
(Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, reprint 1984) See tour 4a,
Stafford County Offices
For more about Stafford County contact:
- Stafford Chamber of Commerce (620) 234-5614
101 S. Main / P. O. Box 24 / Stafford, KS 67578
Last updated on
November 29, 2009
A service of the Kansas State Library
Graphics by John Howell,
photos by Susan Howell,
used by permission.