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Republic County, Kansas

Republic county was organized on September 7, 1860, by James E. Van Natla; David and John Corey; J. C. Riley, D. N. Davis; Daniel, Conrad, and John Myers. Containing the cities of Munden, Republic, Narka, Belleville, Courtland, Agenda, Cuba and Scandia, this county was named for the Republican River.

Early settlers were well protected within the county by the opening of the military road along the California Trail through the county in 1857, which  increased military vigilance. In 1866 the county seat was located in Belleville, but in 1870, a petition requested a new election among Belleville, Scandia, and Salt Marsh for the county seat. Belleville won the election causing great dissension in the county. The building of the Pawnee Indian Museum near Republic to preserve the site of the Pawnee Indian Republic was a major event.

Minersville was a community that formed in 1869 after the discovery of coal deposits. It no longer exists. The first church was Fairview Methodist Church organized in Grant Township, in 1870. The building was constructed in 1872. The first county fair, called the Corn Jubilee, was held in 1890 in Belleville. It is now known as the North Central Kansas Free Fair, the third largest fair in the state. The first school district was organized in 1867.

Republic was home to J. O. Savage, author of History of Republic County, 1883-1901. As well as Agnes Tolbert, who was used as a basis for Log Cabins Along Salt Creek.

There are many interesting sites within Republic, such as the Stevenson House, McHugh Rock House, Larson House, John Peterson Homestead, Rose Creek House (first above ground), John Horedek House, Old Stone House, Wohlfort House, Chruma-Makalous Homestead and Heaton-Stepanek Homestead.

For more information see the Republic County website. The County Historical Society has county newspapers on microfilm, and other source material relating to the county's history.

Entry: Republic County, Kansas

Author: Kansas Historical Society

Author information: The Kansas Historical Society is a state agency charged with actively safeguarding and sharing the state's history.

Date Created: February 2010

Date Modified: October 2018

The author of this article is solely responsible for its content.