stylized sunflower

Cannonball Stage Line Highway

stylized sunflower
Kiowa County - U.S. 54 / U.S. 400 between mileposts 108 and 109 in rest area east of Greensburg, north side
Flamboyant and colorful, Donald R. "Cannonball" Green (1839-1922) ran a stage line connecting the railroad to towns across southwestern Kansas. Green started his first stage service in Kingman in 1876. It ran through Pratt to Coldwater and later to Greensburg, a town he helped found in 1886.
 
Green's stage line served areas not reached by the railroad, and for a few years he also carried the mail from Wichita to Kingman. Known for their speed, Green's coaches were pulled by teams of six or eight horses which were changed every eight to ten miles. More than just a driver, Green was an advisor and teacher, sharing with passengers his knowledge of southwestern Kansas and the prairie landscape.
 
As the railroads advanced, Green moved his stage service west but stage demand soon dwindled. In 1898 he took a claim in Oklahoma Territory when the Cherokee Strip opened. Although Green also served in the Kansas legislature, he was best known for his stage route between Kingman and Greensburg, the Cannonball Highway, which became U.S. Highway 54.
 
Green died in Long Beach, California and is buried in Maple Grove Cemetery in Wichita.
Erected by Kansas Historical Society and Kansas Department of Transportation
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Marker text sent by Robert Walter, Pittsburg, KS


December 8, 2002 / Bob Walter / Wichita, Kansas / history@kslib.info

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