[logo: Kansas Heritage Group]

Junction City, Kansas History

Junction City was the junction of two rivers:

Junction City, seat of former Davis County and present Geary County, originally named Manhattan, was founded in 1858, and derived its name from the nearby junction of the Republican and Smoky Hill Rivers.

On the assumption that the Kaw River was navigable up to the junction of the Republican [River], Andrew J. Mead of New York had proposed to settle an Ohio company from Cincinnati on the site which is now Junction City. Some thought that the town was to be named New Cincinnati, but others said that their town charter required that "the town where they settled should be called Manhattan." Mead, who had chosen the site, said that: "After the selection was made, surveyed and christened Manhattan (now Junction City), I...only waited the arrival of the steamer Hartford." But the steamer was stranded downstream with its cargo, colony, and name.

1859 - Junction City was incorporated due to a special act by the Kansas Territorial Legislature.

Junction City was the junction of three railroads:

In October 1866, the Kansas Pacific depot grounds were marked off, and a turn-table erected.

In November 1866, trains commenced to run from Leavenworth to Junction City, and a new era opened up for the people....

One thing that added greatly to the growth and importance of Junction City after the completion of the Kansas Pacific Railroad to that point, was the fact that it was made the end of the first division of the road. This of course, necessitated the building of a roundhouse, and other workshops at that place which naturally drew a good many people to settle in the town.

Another very good hotel is the "Pacific House," a frame building of goodly size, neatly and comfortably furnished and well kept.

In October 1869 the Kansas Pacific Company sold the roundhouse, workshops, depot and thirty acres of ground to the Union Pacific, Southern Branch Company.

On April 3, 1870 the division was changed from Junction City to Wamego...

The United States land office for this district was located at Junction City in 1870.

SOURCES: see Prentiss and Andreas in Kansas Town Sources list.

Return to the Kansas Community Networks
or return to the Kansas Heritage Server.