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Buffalo Bill Mathewson's Well


category : Landmarks
Buffalo Bill Mathewson's Well In 1863, "Buffalo" Bill Mathewson opened a trading post next to Cow Creek Crossing. His hand-dug, 34 foot deep, stone-lined well that served the U.S. Calvary and Santa Fe Trail travelers has been preserved at this site. It is believed that the well was named after Mathewson after his heroic deeds in saving lives during Indian attacks in the area. One cowhand on the early ranch was young Bill Cody.

In a early reference to Cow Creek Crossing, eighteen-year-old Susan Shelby Magoffin, first Anglo lady to travel the Santa Fe Trail, wrote in her diary July 2, 1846: "Camped tonight at big Cow Creek, three miles from the other which we left at seven o'clock. The crossing here is very bad and took us till moon down to cross. It is good water and wood, so we struck camp."

Commercial use of the Santa Fe Trail closed in Kansas in 1872, having been replaced by the railroad.


Address: Located 3 miles west of Lyons on US 56 and 1 mile south.

Come visit us in Lyons, Kansas

Attractions and Upcoming Events

Father Padilla Cross and Historic Marker

This cross was erected in 1950 by the Kansas Knights of Columbus to honor Father Juan Padilla who accompanied Coronado to Kansas in 1541. He returned in 1542

Lyons, KS Landmarks


Union Soldiers Memorial

Proudly displayed on the Northeast corner of the Lyons Town Square stands the Memorial erected in 1918 to commenorate the service of our Union Soldiers - "Lest We Forget".

Lyons, KS Memorials

Santa Fe Trail Historic Driving Tour

Marker Cottonwood - This giant cottonwood tree, believed to be more than 200 years old, served as a marker to guide travelers to the upper crossing of the Arkansas River. Upper and Lower Crossings of The Little Arkansas River

Lyons, KS Tours

Coronado Quivira Museum

Sponsored by the Rice County Historical Society, the Coronado Quivira Museum has on display artifacts representing the Quiviran Indian culture, Coronado's journey to this area in 1541, the Santa Fe Trail, 1821 to 1872, and Rice County, 1902

Lyons, KS Museums

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Santa Fe Trail Ruts

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Petrified Tree Stump

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