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Osawatomie, Kansas

"Cradle of the Civil War"

Our 4,500 residents are eager to share their attractions, history and special events during your visit.

Located in eastern Kansas, off Highway 169, Osawatomie combines agriculture and commerce in a small town setting with blue Kansas skies, clear air, and lush green grass and trees.

Our name, "Osawatomie", reflects our Native American beginnings. It was chosen to combine the names of the Osage and Potawatomi tribes that moved into this area from Missouri in 1827. In 1837, the Potawatomi Methodist Mission was established upon the site of our future town. The mission was abandoned in 1848.

Osawatomie was founded in 1854 and settled by free-state families from the Ohio Valley and New England. The Adair Cabin, Old Stone Church and First Land Office reflect those early years. The Osawatomie State Hospital has been a leader in mental health in Kansas and the nation since 1864.

Our past is present today as you tour our city and visit with staff at the Adair Cabin, First Land Office and Osawatomie History Museum.

During your stay, share in our history and take time to see and enjoy our tree-lined streets, Victorian homes, ornamental street lights, timeless bridges and friendly merchants-- all the pleasures of small town living.

Attractions and Upcoming Events

Pottawatomie Creek Bridge

The Pottawatomie Creek Bridge which spans Pottawatomie Creek at Sixth Street is one of two Marsh Arch triple span bridges located at Osawatomie. The other spans the Marias de Cygnes River at Eighth Street, and both are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Osawatomie, KS Historic Bridges

Adair Cabin State Historic Site and Museum

The territorial log cabin, which now houses the John Brown Museum, was built in 1854 as the home of Reverend Samuel L. and Florella (John Brown's half sister) Adair. The home was frequented by Brown during his several journeys to Kansas between 1855 and 1858. The Adairs shared John Brown'

Osawatomie, KS Museums

John Brown Memorial Park

The twenty acre John Brown Memorial Park is a National Historic Site donated to the State of Kansas by the Womens Relief Corps to preserve the site of the Battle of Osawatomie, August 30, 1856

Osawatomie, KS Memorials

Osawatomie History Museum

Exhibits include The Railroad, Oswatomie State Hospital, pre-Civil War, Rural Culture, and the Social History of Osawatomie. Special rotating exhibits present Black History Month in February, Women's History Month in March; April, Art; May, Alumni; June, John Brown; August, Founders Day;

Osawatomie, KS Museums

First Land Office

This land office building was built in 1854 and was used by the first mayor of Osawatomie, H. B. Smith, and his brother who were the first land patent agents in the territory. It was deeded to the city in 1954 by A. W. Youngberg as a memorial to his wife.

Osawatomie, KS Pioneer Life

Things to do near Osawatomie, KS

The Osawatomie City Lake

The Osawatomie City Lake is open for small craft boating and is stocked for fishing. The 75-acre recreational area provides a...