Return to Index

Kansas State Board of Agriculture
First Biennial Report

Riley County


Map of Riley County - 1878

Riley county was organized in 1855, and took its name from the military post of Fort Riley. By act of the Territorial Legislature of 1855, its boundaries were fixed so as to include all the territory directly south of what is now, and was then, Marshall county, extending to the Kansas river, and including a large portion of what is now Pottawatomie county. By various changes, made by the Legislature at different times, its boundaries have been changed, until it has arrived at its present proportions. By the same act of 1855, the county seat of the county was established at Pawnee. This was a town laid out by United States Army officers stationed at Fort Riley - Col. Montgomery, Capt. Nathaniel Lyon, Dr. Hammond, Dr. Simmons, Lieut. Long, Robert Wilson, and others, most of them Free-State men. By order of Jefferson Davis, Secretary of War, the boundaries of Fort Riley were extended so as to include the town site, when the settlers were driven away and the town was destroyed. - The Board of County Commissioners held their meetings in the town of Ogden until the year 1858, when the county seat was finally established at Manhattan. Clay Thompson, Thomas Reynolds and C. R. Mobley appear to have been the first Commissioners. - The first permanent settlement in the county was made in the year 1854.

OGDEN TOWNSHIP AND CITY. - The first house erected within the present limit of Riley county was built by Thomas Reynolds, in Ogden township, in June, 1854. The first election in the county was held in this house, November 29, 1854, when forty votes were polled for Delegate to Congress, a large majority for the Free-State candidate. - Among the first settlers were the Dixon brothers, (John, James, Patrick and Thomas,) of whom John was the first white person who died in the township, his death occurring in August, 1855. Among the settlers coming in 1855-6 were C. M. Dyche, S. B. White, Jacob Thierer, John M. Morris, Daniel Mitchell and D. L. Chandler. - The Ogden Town Company was chartered by act of the Legislature in 1857, and the town site at once surveyed and platted. In 1857, a mill was put in operation by J. U. Parsons and D. L. Chandler. - The first store in the township was kept by Robert Wilson, at Pawnee; the first in the city was kept by a Mr. Johnson. - Religious services were held as early as 1857. A Congregational church was organized in 1859, and a stone church edifice built. A Roman Catholic chapel was built in 1866. - The first school was taught in 1859, by Mrs. E. Myers; the second a few months later by James Haston. A large and commodious stone school house, two stories high, was erected in 1867, since which time a graded school has been maintained. There are several other good school houses in the township. - A Government Land Office was established at Ogden in 1857. - The first marriage was that of Thomas Dixon to Mary Hoffman, May 1, 1856. The first child born was Alla Mobley, daughter of C. R. Mobley, in 1856.

ASHLAND TOWNSHIP. - This township was originally part of Davis county; was transferred to Riley county in 1873 by an act of the Legislature. The first settlement was made April 12, 1855, by the Ashland Town Company, who proceeded to lay out a town; this company was formed in Cincinnati, O., and Covington, Ky. The town of Ashland, like many other early Kansas towns, for awhile promised to become a place of some importance; it was made the county seat of Davis county in March, 1857, and continued the county seat until November, 1860, when Junction City succeeded to that honor. - A post office was established in 1858, M. D. Fisher, first postmaster; since discontinued. After the removal of the county seat, the town gradually fell into decay, the houses were removed, the town site was vacated, and the land is now occupied by fields of grain. Among the earliest settlers were N. B. White, Dr. E. L. Patee, William Stone and E. L. Foster. - The first marriage was that of William Stone to Matilda Williams, December 13, 1857. - The first child born was Clarence Patee to Dr. E. L. Patee, March 6, 1857. - The first school house erected was in 1865.

ZEANDALE TOWNSHIP. - This township was originally part of Wabaunsee county, but was transferred to Riley county in 1871, by act of the Legislature. The first settlement in this township was made by John M. McCormick, C. P. and John McDonald and William Wiley, in the fall of 1854. In January, 1855, Daniel S. Bates and a Mr. Morse settled on Deep creek, in Section 6, Town. 11, Range 9, and gave the name to the settlement which is still borne by the township. On the 15th day of March, 1855, John C. Mossman, J. M. Burleigh and J. H. Pillsbury settled in the southern part of the township, and were soon joined by several of their friends and families. - In June, 1855, there was an incursion of grasshoppers which ate off the young corn, but did not tarry long. The winter of 1855-6 was remarkable for the severity and long continuance of the cold weather; from December 25, 1855, to February 11, 1856, the average was 8° below zero; the coldest was 31° below zero; and on the 1st day of February the snow was three feet deep. - In the spring of 1857, a considerable addition was made to the settlement by a colony from New Hampshire, among whom were Harvey Marshall and D. M. Adams. A town site was laid out, but never bloomed into a town. - D. M. Adams was appointed postmaster, and kept the office at the house of J. H. Pillsbury. This office was long since discontinued. - A Congregational church was organized in 1857, and a church building commenced, but never completed. Rev. Harvey Jones, of Wabaunsee, preached alternate Sabbaths during the year 1856. - In 1858, the first school was taught in the settlement by Mrs. Marah Pillsbury, at her own house; this was a private school. The first school house was built in 1862, of hewn logs, hexagonal in shape, and called the "Conic Section." In it was taught the first public school, in 1862, by Mrs. E. Van Antwerp. - Among the settlers arriving in the township in 1857, there were 17 who had been school teachers. - The first marriage was that of C. P. McDonald and Mary E. McCurdy, on the 11th of December, 1856. - The first child born was E. McCurdy, June 1, 1855.

BALA TOWNSHIP. - Bala township was set off and organized by the Board of County Commissioners, in the year 1872. The first settlement within the present limits of the township was probably made by Edward Earle, in the year 1865. In the year 1870, there was organized in New York a Welsh colony, under the name of "The Welsh Land and Emigration Society of America," and, under the auspices of this company, a large number of Welsh families settled in this part of the county, and gave to the township its name. Prominent among those who first came, were J. H. Jenkins, Rowland Davies, Hugh Jones and many others, bearing good old Welsh names. The town of Bala was laid out, and speedily developed into a thriving village. A general store was established by Rowland Davies, in 1870, and is still maintained. The post office of Bala was established in 1871, taking the place of the old Timber Creek post office, and Rowland Davies was appointed postmaster, which position he still holds. The township has steadily increased in population, the land has been put under cultivation, and the town has grown in proportion. The first church was built, in 1872, by the Welsh Calvinistic Methodist, since which time two others have been erected, one Congregational and one Methodist Episcopal. A good school house has been built, in which school is maintained nine months in the year. - A large cheese factory is carried on successfully. - The first marriage was that of Christopher Young and Mary Lock, in 1866. - The first child born was George Carrighan; date of birth unknown.

MAYDAY TOWNSHIP. - Mayday township was set off and organized by the Board of County Commissioners, in the year 1870. The first settlements within the present limits of the township were made principally by Germans, in the year 1856, who located on Fancy creek. Among the early settlers were August and Fred. Winkler, (now proprietors of Winkler's mills, on Fancy creek), Rudolph Nieheuke, George Pickett, Fred. Schwartz, O. E. Osborn and others. In 1870, a post office was established at Mayday, with S. Weichselbaum as postmaster. Several years previous to this, however, a post office had been established at Parallel, near the north line of the county. - In the year 1870, S. Weichselbaum started a general store at Mayday. - The first school house was built in 1867, by district No. 28. - There are now in the township twelve school districts, each of which have good school houses. Four post offices and four stores and one flouring mill are now in operation in the township. - The first marriage was that of A. Brockhart and Sarah Morris, in 1862. - The first child born was John H. Schwartz, August 1, 1859.

GRANT TOWNSHIP. - Grant Township was set off and organized by the Board of County Commissioners in the year 1870. It embraces Mill creek valley and part of Wild Cat creek valley. - Henry Coudray and family were the first settlers on Mill creek; they came in 1855, took claims, built houses and started a mill and blacksmith shop. Jonas Kress was the next settler, coming in 1856, and was followed, in 1857, by Jesse and M. White and Josh Williams, and, soon after, came John Warner, D. R. White and others. - The first school house was built in 1859, and V. Ruddick was the first teacher. - The first preaching was by Newell Trafton, and the first church organization was of the Methodist denomination. - The first marriage was that of William Frakes to Catharine Coudray, in 1856; and the first birth was Newton Frakes.

The first settlement on Wild Cat creek was made by John P. Jonas and T. R. Hair, with some others, near the head, and by S. D. Houston and Eubanks, lower down the creek. Settlers came in rapidly in 1855, 1856 and 1857, until the creek valley was threaded with opening farms. - The first marriage was that of H. W. Martin to Mary Merris, in spring of 1857. - The first child born was George Eubanks. - The first school taught by Lorenzo Westover, in 1861, in a stable. - There are now in the township two post offices: Stockdale, at the mouth of Mill creek; and Wild Cat on the creek of that name. A store is kept at each place, and at Wild Cat a cheese factory is in successful operation.

JACKSON TOWNSHIP. - Jackson township embraces the lower part of Fancy creek valley, and territory north and south of it. The first settlements were made in the early part of 1855, by Gardiner Randolph and sons, near the mouth of Fancy creek, who took a large scope of land; they were followed in 1856 by Solomon and Ed. Secrest, and Henry Shellenbaum, coming in 1857, where they still reside. The beauty and richness of Fancy creek valley caused it to fill up rapidly after the settlement was made, and it is filled with the best farmers in the county being largely Germans and Swedes. - The first regular religious meeting was held at the house of Gardiner Randolph in 1857, as appears by the minutes of the Methodist Episcopal Church South. - The first school was taught in 1863, at the house of J. M. Byarly. - Jackson township was first organized in 1859, and embraced all of the territory now included in Jackson, Mayday, Madison, Bala, and part of Grant townships. - The town of Randolph, then called Waterville, was laid out in 1856, by J. K. Whitson, who was the first inhabitant. - The first school house was built in 1868 by district No. 10. - The first church was built in 1876 by the German Evangelical Association; three other churches have since been erected. - The first marriage was that of Lewis Baldwin and Matilda Randolph, in 1856. - The first child was born in 1857, but its name is lost to history. - The first business established was a store at Randolph, by G. L. Ruthstrem. - The first post office was established in 1857, called Randolph; Gardiner Randolph was postmaster, and kept the office at his own house.

MADISON TOWNSHIP. - In the month of May, 1855, J. P. Hair located on the N. W. 1/4 Sec. 18, T. 9, R. 6, T. R. Hair on the S. E. 1/4 Sec. 12, T. 9, R. 5, and Jonas Hair on the S. W. 1/4 Sec. 7, T. 9, R. 6. - These were the first settlers in the territory now included in Madison township, and their claims were situated near the head of Wild Cat creek. In the month of June, 1855, Major Abram Barry, Marshall Barry, his nephew, and George Taylor, settled near the mouth of Madison creek, on land now in Davis county, but which was, however, a part of Riley county, and included in what was known as Milford township until the year 1873. In 1856, George Lyall settled on N. W. 1/4 of Sec. 12, T. 9, R. 5, on the upper Wild Cat creek; and, in the same year, Lorenzo Gates, John Forman, B. E. Fullington and A. B. Whiting located on Madison creek, and A. D. Reed took a claim on Timber creek. In 1857, James Kester settled on the N. W. 1/4 of Sec. 11, T. 9, R. 4, on Timber creek. A. H. Bartell, who had the previous year located a claim on Madison creek and returned East, came back, bringing his family and brother, E. C. Bartell, who bought out Lorenzo Gates, who went into and settled in Clay county. The winter of 1857-8 was a very mild one. In 1858, came Albert Avery and George Avery, the former locating in Clay county; the latter is still a citizen of Madison township. Lewis Parish came in June, and settled on the claim adjoining A. H. Bartell.

The settlers in this neighborhood were all busy cultivating corn, when, on about the first of July, Captain William Gordon rode in, informing the settlers that the Indians had stolen and run off most of the loose horses in the settlement. Captain Gordon had met an Indian on his way in with some horses, which he knew belonged in the settlement, and tried to drive them back, but only succeeded in getting away with the Indian's gun, while the Indian got away with the horses. The next morning Captain Gordon, with six or seven men, owners of the horses missing, started in pursuit, and following the trail, they found the horses at Pawnee village, on Loup Fork, Nebraska. They hunted up the chief, who after some parley consented to let the horses go, and Captain Gordon and company returned with eleven horses, two more than were known to have been stolen.

A fine crop of corn was raised this year, the season being very favorable.

D. C. Walbridge came in the fall and located on the upper portion of Madison creek. During the summer a saw mill was started at the mouth of Madison creek, under the auspices of the Batchelor Town Company, who had laid out a town there. Early in 1859, this mill was sold to Clark & Pierce, who run it two or three years, selling it to A. B. Whiting, who added to it a flouring mill and has run it ever since.

In 1858, Gilbert Steel settled on the S. W. 1/4 of Sec. 11, T. 9, R. 4. During the next few years, settlers came in very slowly. In 1862, came S. A. Sargent and S. C. Baker, locating on Madison creek, and A. D. Phelps on Timber creek, on N. E. 1/4 Sec. 2, T. 9, R. 4. During the drouth of 1860, very little aid was asked or received by any of the permanent settlers; the aid granted was mostly to transient settlers, who soon moved away. In 1860, there being no local market for grain, George Avery and H. H. Whiting, in company with two or three teams from Manhattan, started for Denver with corn, which was the first attempt to find a western market; the trip was successful, and for several years afterwards considerable produce was taken to the mountains. - In 1861, George Avery brought into the neighborhood a threshing machine - the first owned west of Manhattan. - In 1862, a post office was established at Batchelor, with Abram Barry as postmaster; previous to this, the nearest post office was at Fort Riley. - In the same year a school district was organized at Batchelor, and a school taught by John J. Bartell. - March 30, 1856, James Johnson was married to Mary A. Hair, being the first marriage in the township. - The first births were in 1857; a son, Thomas, to E. C. Bartell and wife, and a daughter, Alice, to A. H. Bartell and wife.

Madison township was established by the Board of County Commissioners, in July, 1871.

MANHATTAN TOWNSHIP AND CITY. - In May, 1855, the steamer Hartford arrived from Cincinnati with members of the Cincinnati and Kansas Land Company on board, who, finding the Manhattan Town Association, a company from Boston, already here, joined with them and together laid out a town site on two Indian floats of 640 acres each. Prominent among the Cincinnati Company, were Judge John Pipher and A. J. Mead, while I. T. Goodnow, J. Denison and C. E. Blood were leaders in the Boston Company. The city was incorporated in 1857, and A. J. Mead was elected the first Mayor. A Methodist church was organized on the Hartford on the way out, and, in 1857, a church building was erected - the first in the county. In January, 1858, the Congregational church was organized by Rev. C. E. Blood, which built a house of worship in 1859. The first school house was built in 1857, of stone, two stories high. In 1859, Blue Mount College was organized, and the corner stone of the building laid. This institution of learning was built up mostly through the efforts of Rev. Joseph Denison and I. T. Goodnow, and under the auspices of the Methodist Episcopal Church, until, in 1863, it was turned over to the State, and formed the nucleus of the State Agricultural College.


(From a photograph taken on top of Rev E. Gale's dwelling.)

The first store kept in Manhattan was by George Miller and John Pipher. - Post office first established at Manhattan in 1856, with George Miller as postmaster. - The first marriage was that of Thos. Platt and Sally E. Pipher, in January, 1856. - The first birth was that of Irvine Lovejoy, son of Rev. C. F. Lovejoy, in the year 1855. - The first school taught was by the wife of Rev. C. E. Blood, in 1855.

Manhattan City was organized by the Legislature in February, 1857. The first election was held May 30th, 1857, when A. J. Mead was elected Mayor, and S. G. Hoyt, A. Scammon, Ira Taylor, Fred. Marvin, John Hoar, Geo. Miller, Ed. Hunting, Jno. Pipher and C. W. Beebe, Councilmen. In May, 1859, Snow, Sarber and Hoyt were appointed a committee to receive and tender the hospitalities of the city to Horace Greeley on his route to the Rocky Mountains.

The City of Manhattan, while it has not increased in population as rapidly as some other towns, has had from its first settlement a steady, permanent growth, and is now noted for the substantial character of its business men, and the excellence of its public buildings, business houses, and many of its private residences. It has seven church edifices all but two of which are of stone. It has just completed one of the most commodious and best arranged public school houses in the State. This building is built of the fine limestone which abounds in the hills which environ the town, and is furnished with a tower clock with fine-toned bell - and equipped throughout with new school furniture and appliances of the latest and most approved style.

The farm of the State Agricultural College adjoins the town site on the west, and with its highly improved fields, its shady walks, and elegant and substantial stone buildings, adds greatly to the attractiveness of the town, as well as to its prosperity.

The town is situated at the confluence of the Blue and Kansas rivers, each of which rivers is spanned by a fine iron bridge. These bridges were erected by Manhattan township at a cost of more than $60,000. In its steady growth in the past; in the permanent character of its public and private improvements; in the enterprise and public spirit of its citizens; in its unexcelled facilities for acquiring an education, and in the wealth and fertility of the country surrounding, there is sure promise to Manhattan of a happy and prosperous future, in which will be realized the sanguine anticipations of its founders.

Population in 1860, 1,224; in 1870, 5,105; increase in ten years, 3,881; population in 1875, 7,065; increase in five years, 1,960; population in 1878, 7,419; increase in eighteen years, 6,195. Rural population, 5,067; city or town population, 2,352; per cent. of rural to city or town population, 68.30.

POPULATION of 1878, by Townships and Cities.
Ashland 186 Bala 497 Grant 772
Jackson 1,013 Mayday 1,219 Madison 499
Manhattan 727 Manhattan City 1,593 Ogden 482
Zeandale 431 ----- ----- ----- -----

Face of the Country. - Bottom land, 20 per cent.; upland, 80 per cent.; forest (Government survey), 4 per cent.; prairie, 96 per cent. Average width of bottoms, from one-half to two miles; general surface of the country - southern and eastern portions bluffy; western and northern portions, undulating.

Timber. - Average width of timber belts, one-quarter of a mile. Prevailing varieties: oak, walnut and cottonwood.

Principal Streams. - The Kansas river flows through the southeastern portion of the county, and the county is bounded on the east by the Big Blue river, flowing southeast. Fancy and Mill creeks, running into the Blue in an easterly direction, traverse, with their branches, the northern and northwestern portions of the county. Wild Cat and Seven-Mile creeks, flowing southeast into the Kansas, water the centre of the county; and Madison, Timber and Three-Mile creeks, running west into the Republican, water the western portion; while south of the Kansas, McDowell, Deep and School creeks supply the southern end of the county. Springs are abundant, and well water is obtained at a depth of 26 feet on the bottoms, and from 60 to 80 feet on the high grounds.

Coal. - None has been developed.

Building Stone, etc. - The county is well supplied with an excellent quality of magnesian limestone, in layers of from two to six inches in width.

Railroad Connections. - The Kansas Pacific Railway crosses the southwestern portion of the county, traversing the valley of the Kansas river. Principal stations: Manhattan and Ogden. The Manhattan & Northwestern Railroad, from Manhattan up the valley of the Blue, has been abandoned for the present.

Agricultural Statistics. - Acres in the county, 394,880; taxable acres, 256,899; under cultivation, 71,481.75; cultivated to taxable acres, 27.82 per cent.; increase of cultivated acres during the year, 9,292.75.

A FAIR YIELD. - Statement by L. R. Elliott, Manhattan:

Wheat. - Henry Strong, of Manhattan, raised twelve acres of Lancaster wheat, which produced 35 bushels to the acre. It was drilled in, September 1, on bottom land, a clay soil, located on Section 7, Township 10, Range 8, and harvested July 5. The cost of production was not estimated.

Value of Garden Produce, Poultry and Eggs Sold during the Year. - Garden produce, $2,335; poultry and eggs, $7,988.

Old Corn on Hand. - Old corn on hand March 1, 1878, 371,752 bushels, or an average of 250 bushels to each family.

Dairy Products. - Number of cheese factories, 2; capital invested, $3,500; manufactured in 1875, 11,105 lbs.; in 1878, 70,838 lbs.; increase, 59,733 lbs. Butter manufactured in 1875, 138,346 lbs.; in 1878, 211,260 lbs.; increase, 72,914 lbs.

Farm Animals. - Number of horses, in 1877, 3,962; in 1878, 4,244; increase, 282. Mules and asses, in 1877, 298; in 1878, 452; increase, 154. Milch cows, in 1877, 5,595; in 1878, 5,953; increase, 358. Other cattle, in 1877, 9,570; in 1878, 12,008; increase, 2,438. Sheep, in 1877, 2,152; in 1878, 2,193; increase, 41. Swine, in 1877, 6,809; in 1878, 12,200; increase, 5,391.

Sheep Killed by Dogs. - Number of sheep killed by dogs, 20; value of sheep killed by dogs, $60.

STATEMENT showing the Acreage of Field Crops named from 1872 to 1878, inclusive.

CROPS. 1872. 1873. 1874. 1875. 1876. 1877. 1878.
Winter Wheat 2,512.00 2,512.00 3,264.00 5,393.50 4,640.00 3,253.00 4,249.00
Rye 447.00 447.00 321.00 2,465.50 3,859.00 2,805.00 3,189.00
Spring Wheat 2,339.00 4,346.00 6,985.00 7,585.50 6,528.00 5,300.00 10,262.00
Corn 14,033.00 9,041.00 12,593.00 15,326.00 17,787.00 26,764.00 25,424.00
Barley 655.00 808.00 497.00 1,359.50 1,885.00 1,520.00 787.00
Oats 2,224.00 2,227.00 2,354.00 5,125.25 2,709.00 2,267.00 2,989.00
Buckwheat 40.00 23.00 13.00 2.50 36.00 21.00 9.50
Irish Potatoes 347.00 452.00 471.00 366.87 496.86 452.00 545.00
Sweet Potatoes 18.00 29.00 41.00 25.37 28.62 39.00 31.50
Sorghum 105.00 59.00 123.00 179.50 124.12 158.00 115.50
Castor Beans ---- ---- ----- 2.75 4.00 15.00 10.50
Cotton ---- 3.00 ----- 1.00 ----- ----- -----
Flax ---- ---- 0.25 53.62 4.00 ----- 0.50
Hemp ----- ---- 1.25 ----- ----- ----- -----
Tobacco 1.00 ---- 6.00 ----- 4.00 ----- 1.75
Broom Corn ----- ---- 0.50 40.37 30.50 90.00 36.00
Millet and Hungarian 662.00 530.00 1,565.00 1,679.50 3,412.00 3,527.00 2,505.00
Timothy Meadow 2.50 ---- 15.00 271.00 10.00 12.00 22.50
Clover Meadow 2.50 3.00 31.00 3.50 37.00 173.00 19.00
Prairie Meadow 10,097.00 6,857.00 7,112.00 9,356.00 9,506.00 8,196.00 9,945.00
Timothy Pasture ----- ----- 1.00 ----- 73.50 86.00 10.00
Clover Pasture ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- -----
Blue-Grass Pasture 40.00 40.00 4.00 29.00 113.00 9.00 77.00
Prairie Pasture 3,798.00 3,198.00 3,144.00 8,341.00 9,620.00 7,502.00 11,253.00

Total 37,323.00 30,575.00 38,542.00 57,607.23 60,907.60 62,189.00 71,481.75

Increase in six years, 92-per cent.
Average increase per annum, 15.33-per cent.

RANK of Riley County in the Crops named below, as to Acreage, and in Cultivated Acreage for the years mentioned in the foregoing table.

CROPS. 1872. 1873. 1874. 1875. 1876. 1877. 1878.

Wheat 26 22 28 23 35 41 41
Corn 31 44 48 45 43 45 46
Total Acreage in all Crops 25 28 41 41 29 42 44

STATEMENT showing the Acres, Product and Value of Principal Crops for 1878, together with the Increase and Decrease as compared with 1877.

FROM 1877.
IN 1878.
FROM 1877.
IN 1878.
FROM 1877.

Winter Wheat - bu. 4,249.00 996.00 in. 93,478.00 60,948.00 in. $62,630.26 $34,003.86 in.
Rye - bu. 3,189.00 384.00 in. 60,591.00 1,686.00 in. 18,177.30 505.80 in.
Spring Wheat - bu. 10,262.00 4,962.00 in. 133,406.00 38,006.00 in. 72,039.24 4,280.76 de.
Corn - bu. 25,424.00 1,340.00 de. 1,067,808.00 136,572.00 de. 192,205.44 24,582.96 de.
Barley - bu. 787.00 733.00 de. 15,740.00 17,700.00 de. 6,296.00 3,736.00 de.
Oats - bu. 2,989.00 722.00 in. 143,472.00 30,122.00 in. 24,390.24 3,987.24 in.
Buckwheat - bu. 9.50 11.50 de. 171.00 123.00 de. 136.80 98.40 de.
Irish Potatoes - bu. 545.00 93.00 in. 36,515.00 13,011.00 in. 10,954.50 4,323.75 de.
Sweet Potatoes - bu. 31.50 7.50 de. 2,992.50 1,687.50 de. 2,992.50 1,687.50 de.
Sorghum - gall. 115.50 42.50 de. 13,282.50 4,887.50 de. 6,641.25 2,443.75 de.
Castor Beans - bu. 10.50 4.50 de. 105.00 45.00 de. 131.25 18.75 de.
Cotton - lbs. ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- -----
Flax - bu. 0.50 0.50 in. 5.50 5.50 in. 5.50 5.50 in.
Hemp - lbs. ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- -----
Tobacco - lbs. 1.75 1.75 in. 1,295.00 1,295.00 in. 129.50 129.50 in.
Broom Corn - lbs. 36.00 54.00 de. 28,800.00 43,200.00 de. 1,080.00 1,620.00 de.
Millet and Hungarian - tons 2,505.00 1,022.00 de. 7,515.00 1,302.50 de. 30,060.00 5,210.00 de.
Timothy Meadow - tons 22.50 10.50 in. 36.00 16.80 in. 180.00 84.00 in.
Clover Meadow - tons 19.00 154.00 de. 38.00 308.00 de. 190.00 1,540.00 de.
Prairie Meadow - tons 9,945.00 1,749.00 in. 15,912.00 2,798.40 in. 59,670.00 10,494.00 in.
Timothy Pasture acres 10.00 76.00 de. ----- ----- ----- -----
Clover Pasture - acres ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- -----
Blue-Grass Pasture - acres 77.00 68.00 in. ----- ----- ----- -----
Prairie Pasture - acres 11,253.00 3,751.00 in. ----- ----- ----- -----

Total 71,481.75 9,292.75 in. ----- ----- $487,909.78 $331.32 de.

Wool. - Clip of 1877, 10,446 pounds.

Value of Animals Slaughtered. - Value of animals slaughtered and sold for slaughter during the year, $161,040.48.

Horticulture. - Number of acres nurseries, 6.25. Number of trees in bearing: apple, 10,703; pear, 406; peach, 34,556; plum, 1,670; cherry, 2,723. Number of trees not in bearing: apple, 17,655; pear, 1,315; peach, 37,396; plum, 1,462; cherry, 4,946.

Herd Law. - There is no general herd law in this county.

Fences. - Stone, 68,348 rods; cost, $119,603.75. Rail, 39,555 rods; cost, $55,377. Board, 13,563 rods; cost, $19,395.09. Wire, 91,916 rods; cost, $67,098.68. Hedge, 42,754 rods; cost, $25,652.40. Total rods of fence, 256,136; total cost, $287,126.92.

Apiaculture. - Number of stands of bees, 60; pounds of honey, 1,503.

Value of Agricultural Implements. - Amount invested in agricultural implements, $63,649.

Manufactures. - Bala township: cheese factory, capital, $2,000. Grant township: cheese factory, capital, $1,500. Jackson township: steam saw mills, 2, capital, $4,000; cabinet factory, capital, $2,500. City of Manhattan: steam flouring mill, capital, $3,000; brewery. Mayday township: steam and water-power flouring mill, capital, $10,000. Ogden township: brewery.

Valuation and Indebtedness. - Assessed valuation of personal property, $511,813; railroad property, $119,354.40; total assessed valuation of all property, $1,878,182.40; true valuation of all property, $3,130,304. Total indebtedness of county, township, city and school districts, $276,683.57; per cent. of indebtedness to assessed valuation, 15-.

Newspaper History. - The Western Kansas Express was the first paper published in Riley county, the initial number appearing on the first Wednesday in May, 1859. C. F. De Vivaldi was the editor and proprietor. The press and material were taken up the Kansas river on a steamboat. In 1860 the name was changed to the Manhattan Express. Mr. De Vivaldi was appointed Consul to Santos, Brazil, by President Lincoln, in 1861, and James Humphrey edited the paper until 1863, when J. H. Pillsbury purchased it, and changed the name to the Independent.

The Kansas Radical was established in July, 1866, by E. C. Manning.

In July, 1868, L. R. Elliott purchased the Independent of J. H. Pillsbury, and on the 13th of September following, having purchased the Radical of E. C. Manning, he consolidated the two offices, and, September 19, issued the first number of the Manhattan Standard.

In December, 1870, Albert Griffin purchased the Standard, and changed the name to the Nationalist, which is still published by him. The paper is Republican in politics.

The Manhattan Homestead and the Land Register, devoted to real estate, were published for a time, the former commencing in March, 1869, and the latter in January, 1870.

The Beacon was established at Manhattan in 1872, by A. D. & A. G. Goodwin. It was subsequently purchased and conducted by L. V. Taft, until sometime in 1874, when it was discontinued.

The Manhattan Enterprise was started by A. L. Runyan, in April, 1876, and is still published by him. It is a Republican paper.

The Industrialist is a weekly paper, published at the printing department of the State Agricultural College, by the students, and devoted to the interests of that institution. It was established April 24, 1875; John A. Anderson, managing editor, J. H. Folks, business manager. March 31, 1877, Folks retired, and Mr. Anderson became sole manager

Schools. - Number of organized districts, 60; school population, 2,928; average salary of teachers, per month, males, $32.93; females, $25.92. School houses built during 1878, 5; frame, 2; stone, 3. Total number of school houses, 59; log, 2; frame, 28; stone, 29. Value of all school property, $61,059. No report on shade trees.

Churches. - Baptist: organizations, 3; membership, 165; church edifices, 1, value of church property, $2,500. Congregational: organizations, 3; membership, 190, church edifices, 2; value of church property, $4,500. Episcopal: organizations, 1; membership, 42; church edifices, 1; value of church property, $5,000. Lutheran: organizations, 2; membership, 150; church edifices, 1; value of church property, $1,000. Methodist Episcopal: organizations, 2; membership, 321; church edifices, 2; value of church property, $3,400. Presbyterian: organizations, 2; membership, 100; church edifices, 1; value of church property, $7,400. Roman Catholic: organizations, 4; membership, 800; church edifices, 2; value of church property, $600.

Transcribed from First Biennial Report of the State Board of Agriculture to the Legislature of the State of Kansas, for the Years 1877-8 embracing statistical exhibits, with diagrams of the agricultural, industrial, mercantile, and other interests of the state, together with a colored outline map of the state, and sectional maps, in colors, of each organized county, showing their relative size and location, railroads, towns, post offices, school houses, water powers, etc., etc. Topeka, Kansas: Kansas State Board of Agriculture. Rand, McNally & Co., Printers and Engravers, Chicago. 1878. Transcribed by Andrew Kinder, Amber H. and Amanda Soucy, March 2002.

Background and KSGenWeb logo were designed and are copyrighted by
Tom & Carolyn Ward
for the limited use of the KSGenWeb Project.
Permission is granted for use only on an official KSGenWeb page.

©1999, 2000, 2001, 2002 by Tom & Carolyn Ward

Home Page for Kansas
Search all of Blue Skyways
The KSGenWeb Project