Rains and flooding bog down local state parks and Corps campgrounds

Earlier this week, Corps staff closed the main road just south of the Wolf Creek Park entrance, at Pomona Lake, and asked visitors to not drive around the barricade. More »

Osage County Cemeteries: Map and list updated 2019

No Name No. 8 Cemetery, near Lamont Hill. Photo by Jan Williams. In cooperation with the Osage County Historical Society, Osage County News has published online a list of More »

Hidden History: Osage County monuments ‘perpetuate the memories of fallen heroes’

Burlingame Cemetery soldier’s monument, date unknown, but photo possibly taken the day of the monument’s dedication. Photo thanks to Burlingame Schuyler Museum. The Civil War was the bloodiest war More »

Life changes abruptly for 2019 Burlingame High School graduates

In a final farewell to Burlingame High School, class of 2019 graduates throw their hats in the air. Photo by Keri Welch. Life is the result of changes, the More »

Frontier Extension plans June wildflower tour in Anderson County

Spider milkweed flowers.

Have you ever driven down the highway or maybe turned on to a gravel road just to look at the wildflowers that are scattered across a pasture? If you have, you probably wondered what some of those beautiful plants were. The Frontier Extension District will be offering an opportunity to learn about some of those plants during a wildflower and pasture tour at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, June 20, 2019, in southern Anderson County. Participants should meet at the Welda Community Building, located just west of state Highway 169 in Welda, Kan. From there the group will then convoy to the pastures.

Once at the location, participants will break into small groups, which will be led by a tour guide to tell about some of the wildflowers and answer questions. There is no need to RSVP and there is no cost to attend. Be advised that this tour will be over rough and uneven terrain, so anyone with limited mobility should plan accordingly. Bug repellent is also advised for ticks and chiggers.

Participants will learn about native wildflowers, pasture management, and maybe some about stocking rates.

For more information, contact Ryan Schaub, Frontier Extension District agent, at 785-448-6826.

Lyndon Legion swears in new officers, kicks off community veterans banner program

By Geri Schuler

At the May 13, 2019, meeting of American Legion Post 125, legionnaires swore in new officers for the 2019-2020 year, in time for the state convention.

Bryce Romine, a past commander, swore in Commander Danny Roush, Vice Commander Lou Ogle and Adjutant and Finance Officer Geri Thomas.  Appointed as sergeant-at-arms was Lou Wohlitz.

After being sworn in, they conducted the monthly post meeting, which included an update on upcoming activities and ongoing activities.  There were updates on the post remodel, and as this project continues we hope to raise funds to finish.

They discussed their partnership with the city of Lyndon and Lyndon Pride on the Veterans banner project.  Love ones can purchase a banner for a loved one that served in the armed forces. The banners will be hung on the decorative light poles on Topeka Avenue in Lyndon during the month of November, for three years.  The cost will be $150 for the banner.  This is a way to honor love ones during the month of November for Veterans Day.

Flag ceremonies for the Lyndon Legion are at Lyndon Cemetery at 10 a.m., Vassar Cemetery at 10:30 a.m., Pomona Dam with other area Legions at 11 a.m., and Oak Hill Cemetery, at Quenemo, at 11:30 a.m.

Memorial Day plans also were finalized. Flag ceremonies for the Lyndon Legion are at Lyndon Cemetery at 10 a.m., Vassar Cemetery at 10:30 a.m., Pomona Dam with other area Legions at 11 a.m., and Oak Hill Cemetery, at Quenemo, at 11:30 a.m.

KDHE waste tire program provides picnic tables, benches for Osage City parks

A convenient bench awaits resting tennis players and walkers, or just provides a place in Jones Park to sit and watch the world go by. Courtesy photo.

The city of Osage City recently learned it is a recipient of a Kansas Department of Health and Environment Waste Tire Grant. The city has used the $2,376 grant to purchase four picnic tables and four benches placed at the Jones Park ball fields, Osage City Aquatic Center, Lincoln Park and Huffman Park to increase public seating.

This is the second time Osage City has received the waste tire grant, in which recipients share 50 percent of the cost. A previous grant in 2015 provided picnic tables, benches and trail benches in the same areas as those recently placed.

New picnic tables provide extra seating at Huffman Park’s picnic shelter.

As a part of the grant stipulations, the city was required to install signage on the tables recognizing they were purchased through the KDHE Waste Tire Grant program.

The city purchased the tables and benches from Champlin Tire Recycling Inc., Concordia, Kan. The tables and benches are 100 percent recycled plastic and rubber composition. Those purchased in 2015 have proved to be durable, withstood the weather, and required minimal maintenance.

Overbrook teacher honored as outstanding early literacy teacher

OVERBROOK, Kan. – An Overbrook Attendance Center teacher is among 56 teachers and classroom staff being honored across the state for their work promoting early literacy, ensuring that children are equipped for future educational success.

Mallory Koger

Mallory Koger, second grade teacher at OAC, was recognized during National Teacher Appreciation Week, May 6-10, 2019, when the Kansas Reading Roadmap honored teachers at 56 partner schools across the state with the Outstanding Early Literacy Teacher Award.

The award recognizes a teacher who contributes significantly to early literacy at their school. Kansas Reading Roadmap asked schools to nominate a teacher who has played a critical role in the school to help students succeed in reading. The 56 nominees were honored by Kansas Reading Roadmap within their respective schools during National Teacher Appreciation Week. Those nominees will be considered by Kansas Reading Roadmap for the statewide Outstanding Early Literacy Teacher of the Year honor, to be awarded at the organization’s state conference in August.

“The Reading Roadmap is proud to recognize this outstanding group of professionals,” said Andrew Hysell, Kansas Reading Roadmap Director. “They represent all the great teachers across Kansas who are promoting early literacy. Studies show that students who read proficiently by the fourth grade are four times more likely to graduate from high school on time. These honorees are helping to ensure the success of not only our children, but also the future of Kansas.”

KRTC gains grant for Landon Trail near Overbrook

Landon Trail trailhead at Overbrook, Kan.

TOPEKA, Kan. – The operators of the 38-mile Landon Trail have received a $14,745 grant from the Walter S. & Evan C. Jones Trust, Emporia, Kan. The grant will be used to develop another one-mile section of the trail south of Overbrook, Kan.

Developed by Kanza Rail-Trails Conservancy, the scenic recreational trail’s right of way stretches from the Shunga Trail, in Topeka, Kan., to Clinton Wildlife Area, Pomona Lake, and the 117-mile Flint Hills Nature Trail, near Quenemo, Kan.

“We appreciate the support the Jones Trust has shown for developing outdoor recreational opportunities,” said KRTC President Doug Walker. “Kanza is working to create a remarkable recreational trail, which will provide a safe place for families to walk or bicycle away from traffic.”

Currently, the trail is completed for 13 miles from the trailhead at 17th and Monroe streets in Topeka to the Clinton Wildlife Area, and two miles at Overbrook, Kan.

When completed, the trail will be the only recreational trail in the U.S. to link the Oregon National Historic Trail to the Santa Fe National Historic Trail. The trail crosses the Santa Fe Trail north of Overbrook.

Reminder for annual test to help prevent deadly horse disease spread

“All horses must have a Negative Coggins Test in order to participate in any activities on the show grounds.” That’s a common note on announcements for horse events or rodeos sponsored by many groups around the Midwest.

At first often annoyance to horse owners, requirement’s importance becomes apparent when a disease positive horse is identified. Alarm sounded loudly a couple of years ago when several Western Kansas horses were confirmed positive for Equine Infectious Anemia.

The Kansas Department of Agriculture Division of Animal Health received that confirmation from the National Veterinary Services Laboratory.

“EIA is an incurable, infectious disease caused by a virus afflicting equine species,” said veterinarian Dr. Robert N. Oglesby.

The deadly disease, also called swamp fever, affects horses, donkeys and mules.

“There are typically a small number of EIA cases in the United States every year,” Oglesby said. “But, the disease is common in other parts of the world.

“EIA is controlled in the U.S. by regular testing before traveling across state lines and before exhibition,” Oglesby explained.

That analysis for EIA is generally referred to as a Coggins Test.

“The EIA virus destroys red blood cells and is spread through blood-to-blood transfusion, not close proximity or contact,” Oglesby informed.

Clinical signs of EIA include fever, anemia and edema. However, affected horses may not show symptoms.

“All infected horses, including those which are asymptomatic,” Oglesby said, “are carriers of the disease. Transmission of the virus can be from an infected equine to a ‘clean’ equine by biting flies.”

Additionally, spread of the virus can be from using contaminated medical instruments, or through a blood transfusion.

The disease does not affect humans, KDA-DAH officials emphasized at the time of EIA confirmations in Kansas. Research has shown that the EIA virus survives for a limited time on the mouth parts of the fly vectors.

Eat Well to Be Well: The harms of going gluten-free when you don’t have to

In case you haven’t noticed, the gluten-free market has exploded within the past five years. This tidal wave of gluten-free popularity took off with endorsements from food blogs and social media hash tags. Even the food industry has played a significant role. Extensive labeling of foods as gluten-free or not has amassed such a following, an estimated one in five Americans include gluten-free foods in their diet.

Yet, most people pulling gluten-free foods off grocery store shelves do not have sensitivity to wheat, barley or rye. In fact, experts estimate that only about seven percent of Americans benefit from avoiding gluten. That means many of us eating gluten-free really don’t need to. Despite this fact, according to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, gluten-free alternatives to traditional foods accounted for nearly $1.6 billion in sales in 2015. Most of this growth is driven by consumers believing gluten-free is healthier and may aid weight loss. So, who should go gluten-free and who should not?

Who benefits from following a gluten-free diet?

Any person diagnosed with celiac disease through an intestinal biopsy will need to follow a gluten-free diet for the rest of their life. Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder caused by an abnormal immune response to gluten. Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley and rye that can damage the lining of the small intestine by causing inflammation. When the damage occurs, it reduces the ability of the intestinal lining to absorb nutrients, which can lead to problems such as anemia, osteoporosis, or growth delays in children.

A food label shows this product is not gluten free: Wheat flour and whole wheat flour are derived from gluten-containing wheat. USDA graphic.

Another form of celiac disease called dermatitis herpetiformis (DH), also warrants going gluten-free. DH can trigger the immune system to attack the skin, causing a chronic, itchy bumpy rash that can be quite painful.

One other reason to avoid gluten is to reduce symptoms of gluten sensitivity. Gluten sensitivity is not an autoimmune disease; instead it’s the inability to process gluten, resulting in unpleasant symptoms such as diarrhea, gas, bloating, and constipation.

Anyone who believes they may benefit from a gluten-free diet should be evaluated by their family physician and a gastroenterologist to determine if they have celiac disease, DH or gluten sensitivity. If they do, following a gluten-free diet will help them feel better with fewer symptoms.

Rodeo attractions to highlight weekend at Burlingame

There’s not a bad seat in the arena, with spectators guaranteed an up close view of wild rodeo action at Burlingame this weekend. Courtesy photo.

BURLINGAME, Kan. – It’s rodeo time at Burlingame. And a weekend of rodeo related attractions promises to make the town come to life well beyond the arena action.

“It’s time for the 49th annual Santa Fe Trail Rodeo,” announced Ethan Quaney, Burlingame Saddle Club official, who noted the rodeo will be Friday and Saturday evenings, May 17-18, in the arena on South Rodeo Drive.

Les Holman, of the Burlingame Chamber of Commerce, reminded that the town’s Rodeo Days activities will take place on Saturday.

What could be more appropriate for a rural community than a rodeo activity weekend? After all, Burlingame is right on the famed original Santa Fe Trail “where rail crosses trail.” In the mid-1800s, trains originally hauled freight right through what’s now Burlingame, Kansas, to Santa Fe, New Mexico. Then oxen and equine power was replaced by big iron horses, steam engine powered trains. The railroad tracks cross right over the original Santa Fe Trail, according to the weekend coordinators.

“Those performances featuring livestock from High States Rodeo Company begin at 7 o’clock,” Quaney said.

Another highlight for the rodeo weekend is Sunday afternoon, May 19, with youth rodeo beginning at noon.

The amateur rodeo Friday and Saturday evenings is double sanctioned by the United Rodeo Association and the Missouri Rodeo Cowboys Association. Sunday’s rodeo is an event of the Missouri-Kansas Rodeo Association with entries from both states competing.

A wide array of activities is planned in Burlingame for the annual Rodeo Days celebration. “It’ll sure be a fun packed entertaining Saturday for everybody,” Holman said.

A running kickoff for the action is the Bucking 5K Fun Run at 9 a.m. There’ll be a craft show 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., attracting exhibitors from a wide area. Tractor and car shows are planned also.

A peddle pull for youth four to 12 opens with registration at 9 a.m. Of course, everybody’s anticipating the cutest baby contest at 10 a.m., and the pie eating contest at 1 p.m.

Sissy and Earl are lined up to entertain with live music on Stage 56, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

A chuck wagon will be serving free samples of authentic cowboy beans and coffee. amd there’s going to be homemade ice cream dipped up at the library. Such a Saturday event is most exciting for the children and all young at heart. On tap are a carnival, inflatables, petting zoo, pony rides and a kids’ dance at The Hideout.

Lions Club to host Carbondale farmers market

The Carbondale Lions Club will again be hosting a summer farmers market, which will begin May 22, 2019, and continue through the vendors’ production season, usually through September and possibly into October.

The farmers market will be 4-6 p.m. every Wednesday at the Carbondale City Park. All items are to be homegrown or home produced. Vendors can offer seasonal produce, plants, canned goods, jellies, baked goods, assorted crafts, clothing, jewelry, and decor made from wood, fabrics, yarn, and concrete creations. The market will be held every Wednesday, unless unsafe weather conditions are occurring.

Anyone who would like to be a vendor should contact Mary Vawter Burgett at [email protected] or leave a voice mail at 785-836-7887.

OCPR Update: S.T.E.A.M. into spring, sing into summer

OCPR-logo-redSpring is here, Kansas’ hot weather is not far behind, and Osage City Parks and Recreation is making the Osage City Aquatic Center the cool place to be this summer. In the meantime, swimming lessons, S.T.E.A.M Camp, Musical Camp and Youth Football Camp are scheduled and signup deadlines are getting closer.

Filings in the Osage County Courthouse, April 29 – May 3, 2019

The following information was compiled from records at the Osage County Courthouse, April 29 through May 3, 2019.

Osage County Jail Log, May 5 – May 10, 2019

The following individuals were booked into the Osage County Jail in connection with charges or warrants as listed by the arresting agency.

MdCV grads head into world bolstered by firm friendships, strong dreams

Marais des Cygnes Valley High School Class of 2019. Photo by Kramer Photos.

Spring showers brought May flowers and also sprouted a new crop of graduates at Marais des Cygnes Valley High School. At the first graduation honors in Osage County for 2019, friends, family, faculty, administrators, and the USD 456 Board of Education gathered May 4 at the MdCV High School gymnasium to wish well to this year’s dozen MdCV High School graduates.

MdCV’s 2019 salutatorian Chloe Volkman recognized the crowd gathered for the ceremony.

“Thank you all again for coming to help us celebrate this special day in our lives,” Volkman said. “We are very grateful to have such an amazing community who supports us. I would just like to make one last thank you to all of the staff at school, because none of this would be possible without you guys.”

To her classmates, Volkman noted they would be going forward, but remembering their high school years not by class periods and school days they spent at MdCV.

“We only arrived here four short years ago, and its already time for us to leave,” Volkman said. “I know that as I look out to all of you that I will measure my time much differently. I will measure it in the friendships that I have created with all of you and when many of our high school memories will begin to fade, that’s how we will ultimately measure the time we spent here. It won’t be in periods or semesters, but the friendships we made and the times that we all spent together. So congratulations to the class of 2019, and wherever we go and whatever we do, may we always be friends when we meet again.”

MdCV 2019 valedictorian Kathryn Vaught echoed Volkman’s appreciation of their parents’ sacrifices, and the impressions left upon students by teachers and school staff.

“[You] can’t be thanked enough,” Vaught said. “You had an impact in our lives and left lasting impressions … we learned many things from you guys – to be ourselves, be kind, follow our dreams, and not be afraid of failure.”

“Well guys, we made it,” Vaught told her fellow graduates. “It’s been one heck of journey – one we won’t be forgetting anytime soon.”

But, she said, “Today is a milestone, it tells you how far you have come, we aren’t the kids we used to be, even though we sure don’t feel like adults.”

She offered advice she had received from a mentor: “Keep playing the game.”

“There’s a feeling all of you should have – pride, accomplishment, happiness – whatever it is, take it and use it. Years from now when we look back we’ll be more disappointed by the things we didn’t do rather than the ones we did. So have that courage, find your dream, chase after it with all you got, you won’t get another chance. Go out there believing in your dreams, believe in yourself.”

With Principal Ben Gordon presenting the Marais des Cygnes Valley High School Class of 2019, board of education members presented diplomas to the following graduates: Nocona Renae Brinkley, Ethan Alexander Cannon, Kayla Louise Garber, Brookelyn Shae Janssen, Alaina Hollyann Marsh, Destiny Hope Massey, Gannon Austin Isiah Schimmel, Tannar Ray Smith, Aniyah Marie Sypher, Kathryn Elizabeth Vaught, Cloe Elizabeth Volkman, and Morgan Sue Williams.

A Cowboy’s Faith: Powers of floodwaters devastating

A Cowboy's Faith: Click to read more from Frank J. Buchman.“It’s better to have too much rain than the opposite.”

That’s the comment heard reflecting dry conditions of a year ago compared to now.

Obviously local opinion is legitimately countered with disagreement from those suffering irreplaceable, financially devastating flood damages.

Deepest heartfelt condolences are expressed to those experiencing terribly dramatic forever life altering acts of nature.

Vastness of loss remains incomprehensible to outsiders despite vivid news coverage of extensive flooding horridness.

Worst loss is human lives taken by uncontrollable, no escaping raging high waters.

Everybody in the nearby flooding region has been lifetime diversely harmed. Farms of generations destroyed, never to be replaced. Richest soils of the world were stolen by rampant overflowing.

Entire livestock operations morbidly were taken with no reprieve despite distinct natural instinct and owner-operator management assisting tactics.

Even with government programs and broadest generous financial assistance, life as was never again, no matter how evaluated.

Money cannot buy what has been lost. No way to start over, begin again. Life goes on in an entirely different direction, never expected or imagined in the scariest dream.

No actual semblance, yet cowboys are experiencing dilemmas with local flooding now, too.

High water closes campgrounds and roads at area lakes

LYNDON, Kan. – Campers at Osage County lakes this weekend are facing high waters, closed campgrounds and a chance of more rain.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is urging campers and lake visitors to use caution around flood waters and high lake elevations after a round of nightly storms have saturated the area this week. At Melvern and Pomona lakes, officials have announced several campgrounds are closed due to retained water causing high lake elevations.

At Melvern Lake, campsites closed due to increased lake elevation include Turkey Point, Sites 1 through 26 and site 30; Coeur d’Alene, Sites 11 through 32; Arrow Rock, Sites 6 through 10, 12 through 15, and 35 through 45. Outlet Park is currently not affected. The lake level continues to rise.

At Pomona Lake, the Coon Creek Causeway between Michigan Valley Park and the Quarry area is closed due to high lake elevation. Access to Wolf Creek Park from Michigan Valley is closed. All sites in Michigan Valley A Loop, C Loop, G Loop, and Wigger Group Camp have now been closed due to high lake elevation. As of Wednesday, the pool elevation continued to rise at Pomona Lake.

The campsites are closed through Wednesday, May 15, 2019, although closure extensions are likely. Officials advised that anyone who has rented a campsite that is closed will receive a full refund. The Corps is no longer charging fees at boat ramps at these lakes and several Corps docks have been pulled out of the water.

Help House News: Melvern food pantry reopens; spring garage sale planned

By Raylene Quaney

If anyone is looking for a special dress for graduation, Help House has some out on the rack now. Stop by and check them out before they are all gone.

Budget class openings

The next “Good Sense” budget class will be 3-9 p.m. Wednesday, May  15, 2019, at Help House. Once completed the participant is eligible for assistance with heating and or cooling cost on utilities, gas, electric or wood. This is a one-day class. Call 785-828-4888 for more information and to register

Thank a volunteer

Help House’s annual volunteer training was held Monday, May 29, with 14 volunteers attending. All volunteers are asked to participate in this training. Sharing and learning from each other is a great way to continue to improve our services. Thank you to everyone for your participation.

Mobile pantries

Mobile food pantry dates:

  • Carbondale – Carbondale Church of Christian Fellowship on the second Tuesday, 12 p.m. May 14.
  • Osage City – Osage City Community Building, third Thursday, 10-11 a.m. May 16.
  • Melvern – Melvern mobile pantry is back open and will be 12:30 p.m. May 16, at the Melvern Community Center.
  • Burlingame – Burlingame Federated Church on the third Thursday, 10 a.m. May 16.
  • Lyndon – Jones Park on East Sixth Street, third Friday, 12 p.m. May 17.

Participants in the mobile pantry are asked to be in line 15 to 20 minutes before starting time to be included in the count to determine quantities of items each family will receive. Help House sponsors the Lyndon and Carbondale mobile pantries.

Farmers or individuals wishing to donate farm raised beef, pork or chicken: All donations must be processed and packaged in a plant that has been USDA inspected, and packaging must have the USDA seal. Any donations such as this are a great help, as we do not have to purchase these items to provide the protein that is such an important part of a good diet. Donors can also make cash donations designated for the purchase of meat for the pantry instead.

Carl William Spicer, 64, Osage City: March 1, 1955 – May 5, 2019

OSAGE CITY, Kan. – Carl William “Bill” Spicer, 64, passed away Sunday, May 5, 2019, at his home surrounded by family. He was born March 1, 1955, in Emporia, Kan., the son of Clarence Edward and Claire Jean (Asklund) Spicer.

He graduated in 1973 from Osage City High School, Osage City, Kan. He played JUCO basketball one year and then attended Emporia State University for a year.

Margaret Marie Coleman, 79, Osage City: Aug. 17, 1939 – May 5, 2019

OSAGE CITY, Kan. – Margaret M. Coleman, 79, passed away May 5, 2019 at her home surrounded by family.

Margaret Marie Rudolph was born Aug. 17, 1939, in Stanley, N.D., the daughter of Oscar Charles and Edith (Fenstermacker) Rudolph.

She graduated from high school at Stanley. She had worked as a human resource manager for the U.S. Postal Service. She was a member of the Red Hats and Club 15.

Make a difference – adopt a highway

Make a difference in your community and help the environment at the same time – join the Adopt-A-Highway program in Kansas.

The goal of the program is to clean along the roadways throughout the state to increase safety for motorists and pedestrians as well as improve the beauty of Kansas. This helps to raise awareness on the negative effects of pollution and the positive aspects of a clean community.

Any non-profit group that does not discriminate upon the basis of race, religion or gender can join and there is no cost to the group. Members must be at least 11 years old and have adequate adult supervision. Groups have clean-ups three times a year and are recognized for their efforts with signs marking their sections of highway.

Groups clean their sections of roadway three times a year at their convenience. Most choose to schedule a clean-up time in the spring, summer and fall.

For more information, contact the Kansas Department of Transportation office in your area and ask for the Adopt-A-Highway coordinator. In northeast Kansas, contact the Topeka office at 785-296-2291.

Teens operating farm machinery for employment require safety training

The Frontier Extension District will sponsor a Hazardous Occupation Training (HOT) class on May 31, 2019. This class is required for 14 and 15 year old youth who want to operate farm tractors on farms other than for their parents. Only 14 to 15-year-olds who work for their parents on the family farm are exempt from this required training. This training is required if the family’s farm is a partnership, incorporated, or the youth is working on a grandparent’s farm. This training is also required if youth are planning to use lawn mowers or tractors larger than 20 horsepower.

The local HOT class will meet 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, May 31, 2019, at the Pomona Community Center, 219 Jefferson, Pomona, Kan. The driving and written test will be given off site at a local farm. Youth will be transported by instructors to the farm and back to the Pomona Community Center.

There is a registration fee of $10 to cover class materials. Registration is required by calling one of the Extension District offices: Lyndon, 785-828-4438; Ottawa, 785-229-3520; Garnett, 785-448-6826 or by emailing agents Rod Schaub at rsch[email protected] or Darren Hibdon at [email protected] by May 24. Participants are required to obtain tractor safety materials from the Extension office and read the materials prior to the start of the class.

Hidden History: Proud chief forever claims home in final resting place

The year 1869 marked the removal of the Sauk (Sac) and Fox tribes from Osage County to Oklahoma, all resigned to their fate except those under the leadership of a man named Mokohoko. This chief among the tribes had come to love this land that he had been forced into and adopted as his own. His fight to preserve his people’s rights to their land became one of the last stands of the American Indian in Kansas against Euro-American expansion.

Mokohoko, whose name means “He who floats visible near the surface of the water”, was the principal chief of the Sauk tribe. He belonged to the Sturgeon Clan, a clan designated for leaders of the Sauk. Mokohoko was a key supporter in the Black Hawk War, a brief conflict in 1832 that took place when the Sauk leader Black Hawk tried to reclaim tribal lands in Illinois that had been ceded in a previous treaty. Mokohoko was stubbornly traditional, holding tight to the culture of his people. This often put him at odds with another Sauk and Fox leader, Keokuk, who tended to be more lenient towards the white man’s ways.

In the winter of 1845-46, the Sauk and Fox tribes were removed to a reservation in Franklin and Osage counties consisting of 435,200 acres located at the upper reaches of the Osage River. The first Sauk and Fox agency was in Franklin County, and later, in 1859, moved near Quenemo.

Mokohoko and his band settled on the banks of the Marais des Cygnes River, stretching for 10 miles upstream and downstream of the area that would become the town of Melvern. This land contained 500 acres of rich farm ground used by the Sauk and Fox for farming. This prime ground produced so much corn that the tribe was able to sell the surplus to the government and early settlers of the area.

Contact us: Osage County News | P.O. Box 62, Lyndon, KS 66451 | [email protected] | 785-828-4994 | Powered by Osage County, Kansas