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Kansas Counties

Breckinridge County, Kansas [defunct]

Date Established: August 25, 1855
Date Organized:
Date Defunct: February 05, 1862
Location: Kansas map showing location of Breckinridge County
County Seat: Emporia
Origin of Name: In honor of John C. Breckinridge (1821-1875), congressman from Kentucky and subsequently vice-president of the United States under James Buchanan from 1857 to 1861. Elected to the U.S. Senate in 1860, he was expelled the following year for supporting the rebellion; he served as a major-general in the Confederate Army and briefly as the southern Secretary of War. Breckinridge County was renamed Lyon County due to Breckinridge's political sympathies.
History: The Territorial Legislature of 1855 organized Breckinridge County, attaching it to Madison County for civil, criminal, and military purposes. Agnes City was the first county seat. It was during 1858-59 that the bitterest fight occurred between Americus and Emporia over the location of the county seat; Americus won by a total of 14 votes.

Although a courthouse was not erected in Americus, it continued to be regarded as the county seat up until the general election of 1860. Emporia received 384 votes for the honor, Americus 141, Fremont 73, Breckinridge Center 14, and Forest Hill 1. This election decided the matter.

The first school in the county was opened by Rev. G.W. Torrence in the summer of 1858. In October of that year, Miss Mary Jane Watson opened a free school in Emporia.

In 1861, Madison County was abolished, and its northern part was given to Breckinridge.
Population: No Data Available.
Other Resources: Post offices in Breckinridge County
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