You are here: Blue Skyways > Kansas > Counties > Barber
Barber County Courthouse in Medicine Lodge.  Picture by Susan Howell.
 Barber County Courthouse

Barber County

County Seat: Medicine Lodge
Founded: 1873
    · 5,307 (2000)
    · 5,874 (1990)
    · 6,594 (1900)
Area: 1136 Square Miles
Standard Abbreviation: BA


Barber County's beautiful Gyp Hills offer scenic views straight out of a Technicolor movie. Highway US 160 passes through this area and there is a marked scenic route to take you by some of the best places. For more information on this, visit
Most of the county is hilly, and the economy is based on ranching, petroleum, and mining.


Map of Barber County, KS in 1899
Organized in 1873.  County seat Medicine Lodge.  In honor of Thomas W.Barber, a Free State settler of Douglas County, who was killed in consequence of the political troubles, near Lawrence, December 6, 1855. (the county was originally named in the statute as "Barbour," but was corrected by special act of the Legislature in 1883.)
Map and text from History of Kansas, Noble Prentis, (Winfield: E.P. Greer. 1899)
        Thomas Barber's death inspired a passionate poem by John Greenleaf Whittier.
Carrie Nation began her crusade against saloons in Kiowa. Her home in Medicine Lodge is now a museum.
Medicine Lodge was the site of a famous gathering of Indian tribes to make a treaty with the U. S government. A marker on the east side of town gives more details.
William G. Cutler's History of Kansas, first published in 1883, tells about early Barber County.
The Special Collections of the Ablah Library at WSU contain historical images of Medicine Lodge, Sun City, Sharon, and Isabel.
The Kansas State Historical Society also has more historical data for Barber County online including a rich bibliography and lists of cemeteries, post offices, and newspapers.

Cities, Towns, & Villages of Barber County

  Year  Elev  Population Name              ZIP
  ====  ====  ========== ================ =====
        1640             Aetna
        1951             Deerhead
        1670             Eldred
        1720             Elm Mills
        1577             Forest City
        1396             Gerlane
        1420         199 Hardtner         67057
        1360         144 Hazelton         67061
  1887  1850         108 Isabel           67065
        1330       1,055 Kiowa            67070
        1619             Lake City        67071
        1510       2,193 Medicine Lodge   67104
        1540             Mingona
        1512             Pixley
                         Red Creek
  1879  1464         210 Sharon           67138
        1378             Stubbs
  1872  1676          81 Sun City         67143
Census Bureau Profile & Map

Barber County School Systems

Barber County Libraries

Barber County Museums

  • Kiowa Historical Society - In the old city building/jail
    107 N. Seventh Street / Kiowa, KS 67070
  • Carrie Nation House (620) 886-3908
    Highway 160 / Medicine Lodge, KS 67104
  • The Stockade Museum (620) 886-3417
    Highway 160 / Medicine Lodge, KS 67104

Barber County Newspapers

  • Barber County Index   (620) 886-5617
    106 W. First / P. O. Box 349 / Medicine Lodge, KS 67104
  • Gyp Hill Premiere (620) 886-5654
    110 N. Main / Medicine Lodge, KS 67104-0127
  • Kiowa News   (620) 825-4229
    614 Main Street / Kiowa, KS 67070-1414

Special Places in Barber County

  • Carrie Nation, the famous prohibitionist lived in Medicine Lodge and her house is open for visitors. Her tactic of breaking things in bars began in Kiowa.
  • The Wisner Library in downtown Sharon is in a beautiful old brick building.
  • Hathaway's in Sun City still serves beer in giant schooners and good hamburgers.

Special Events in Barber County

  • Every few years Medicine Lodge presents a historical pageant about the Peace Treaty signed there.

More Data About Barber County

Economic Development
  • Kansas County Profile Reports
    Statistical data from The Institute for Policy and Social Research, the University of Kansas
Health Data


Barber County Links


  • WPA The WPA Guide to 1930s Kansas ( Lawrence: University Press of Kansas. 1984 )

Barber County Offices

  • Barber County (620) 886-3961
    120 E. Washington Ave. / Medicine Lodge, KS 67104
  • Extension Service

For more about Barber County:

Last updated on November 29, 2009 by COUNTIES@KSLIB.INFO
Hosted by
Link to Blue Skyways - a service of the Kansas State Library
A service of the Kansas State Library  
Kansas on the Net, a subsidiary of 'Kansas Traveler, LLC'
Graphics by John Howell,
photos by Susan Howell,
used by permission.