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Mitchell County, Kansas

Mitchell County, home to Beloit, Cawker City, Hunter, Glen Elder, Simpson (part), Scottsville and Tipton, was named for Captain William D. Mitchell, a Kansas Civil War soldier in the Second Kansas Cavalry who was promoted to officer rank in the Second Kentucky Cavalry and was killed in 1865. Joseph Decker; John Rees; Amos A. Bell; Timothy Hersey; George Campbell; Alexander Campbell; Charles H. Morrill; Edward Valentine; William C. Ingram; and Daniel Kepler organized the county on October 4, 1870.

In August 1868 through 1870 Indian raids intimidated settlers resulting in the killing of some and the capture of two white girls. The girls were later returned. A stockade was constructed near Cawker City to aid in the protection against the Indians. The arrival of the first railroads in the Beloit area, beginning with the central branch of the Missouri Pacific in 1879 aided in bringing additional settlers to the area.

Baptists in Beloit organized the first church in 1871. The first church building was the Methodist Church in Beloit, 1874. The first school building in the county was the Lulu Township School, and possibly the first district, in 1872. A subscription school had been started in Beloit in 1872.

Mitchell County is home to Isaac Young, who served in Congress from the county from 1911 to 1913, and Abram Ellis (1901-1902) and Clark A. Smith (1904-1915) served as Justices of the Kansas Supreme Court.

Mitchell County has two interesting sites, the Hart House and the Jean Hanni House, both in Beloit.

For more information see the Mitchell County website. The public library has microfilm of the early newspapers and other materials relating to the history of the county. The early commissioners records are available at the courthouse.

Entry: Mitchell County, Kansas

Author: Kansas Historical Society

Author information: The Kansas Historical Society is a state agency charged with actively safeguarding and sharing the state's history.

Date Created: February 2010

Date Modified: October 2015

The author of this article is solely responsible for its content.