Norton County, KS

Norton County

"Pheasant Capital of the World"

Norton County is the "Hub of Northwest Kansas" when it comes to recreation. Pheasant hunters from throughout the nation throng to Norton County on season opening day. Norton has been termed the "Pheasant Capital of the World." An abundance of deer, quail, and other wildlife bring many other sportsmen to the Norton area, Sebelius Reservoir and the Norton Wildlife Area.

John C. Fremont came to this area on his exploration of the West. In his travels he found a beautiful stream, a fork in the Republican River. His group followed this stream and saw many villages of Prairie Dogs. So the name Prairie Dog Creek was given to this water course. Fremont then went West-Northwest and crossed the Sappa Creek. Then he journeyed south and found the north fork of the Solomon. Thus, three main streams were discovered in this county.

In 1859, the Kansas legislature named the territory, which now comprises Norton County, "Oro".

Kansas became a state on January 29, 1861, and counties and cities were organized. On March 3, 1868, "Oro" territory was divided into counties and "Norton" evolved. This area was named in memory of Orloff Norton, captain of the Fifteenth Kansas Cavalry.

Early comers to the county, besides Indians, were buffalo hunters and trappers. However, there were others who were desirous of acquiring land and making homes. The first settlers in the new almelo area were Catholics from Canada who homesteaded along the solomon in 1873. First known as the French settlement, since the 1870's, Catholics of German and Irish descent have predominated. The Leavenworth and Pikes Peak Stagecoach Line ran through Norton where travelers stopped at Station 15, which still exists in a city park along Highway 36.

Explore Norton County

Norton County Historical Museum

Did you know that Norton County, Kansas, was the site of one of the biggest meteor impacts in the United States? At about 5:00 p.m. on February 18, 1948, there was a loud explosion and fireball approximately 15

Norton, KS Museums

Hillmon School

The Hillmon Schoolhouse was the sixth school district to be organized in Norton County. The school houses were numbered as they were built and the Hillmon School was District 6

Norton, KS Pioneer History

Art Deco Theater

Norton volunteers have rennovated the old Art Deco Theater in Downtown Norton, and enjoy providing the popcorn while you relax and watch movies.

Norton, KS Theatres

Windmill Collection

Sunflower Pioneer Power grounds are located in the block at the north end of town with a restored village of the late 1800

Almena, KS Museums

"They Also Ran" Gallery

"What do Stephen A. Douglas, Horace Greeley, Horation Seymour, Henry Clay, Alf Landon, Richard Nixon and Jimmy Carter have in common? - They all ran for President ... and lost." Although these men and many others in American Presidential History were unsuccessful in their bids to attain the nation'

Norton, KS Museums

Adobe House

Tourists will relive a bit of the past when they visit the Adobe House located at the Prairie Dog State Park. This earthen-walled structure is the only one in Kansas on its original location and preserved as a museum. As near as can be determined, the house was constructed in 1892

Norton, KS Pioneer History

Historic Bridges

Two historic bridges are located in the Lenora vicinity. They are both listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The North Fork Solomon River Lattice Truss Bridge located on Road W, 0.l mile south of the intersection with Road BB, 1.5 miles west of Lenora, KS.

Lenora, KS Historic Bridges

Two Parks

Need to stop for a little while on your way or a place to have a lunch outside where the kids can run a little? Almena has a city park that gives some shade at the east edge of town. Looking for a place where the kids can play a bit?

Almena, KS Park

Explore Norton County