This historic town is still a favorite rendezvous on the Santa Fe Trail. But these days, you don’t have to be headed to Santa Fe for excuse to pause on the prairie in Council Grove, Kansas…where history is always present.
Visitors can stand on the site of the Council Oak where the first treaty was signed between the US and the Osage Indians establishing the right of way for passage on the Santa Fe Trail. Standing in front of the historic Hays House, Conn Store, or Rawlinson-Terwilliger Home, one can just imagine the wagon trains passing by and almost hear the creaking of wagons, the plodding oxen, and the braying mules.
Located at the crossroads of Highway 56 and 177, Council Grove is nestled in the scenic tallgrass prairie of the Flint Hills. Just like in trail times, the tallgrass and rolling hills stretch as far as you can see across one of the country’s last true prairies. History, hospitality, and Old West lore await all those who venture into our wide-open spaces!
Excerpt from the Council Grove Chamber of Commerce & Tourism guide to local historic sites.