The History of Hoisington
The story of Hoisington is the story of the Missouri-Pacific Railroad in Central Kansas. Land-hungry settlers from Illinois, Iowa and other eastern states were eager to press forward and settle in this new country. The War with Mexico had bequeathed to the United States an immense new western empire. America was now a two-ocean nation. California had been admitted as a state, and later, railroad survey parties were surveying land through Kansas for possible rail route to the Pacific.
At the time Barton County was organized in 1872, the area was one of the finest grazing lands for the buffalo on the American continent. It was truly a hunters paradise. Buffalo and antelope roamed this area by the millions. Deer and elk were in the timbered stream valleys.
The pioneers of Homestead Township in the 1870's had preceded the establishment of the town of Hoisington and had contributed to the laying of the railroad by voting bond issues. The original railroad was built as The Kansas and Colorado Railroad Company. Some of the main line grading was done through this part of the state in 1885, but it was not until the fall of 1886 that the first work-train arrived.
In the beginning, Monon, meaning "Lady of the Lake," was the railroad station. It became the division point because Chivington, Colorado, failed to yield the required water. Lake Barton was constructed to provide water for the trains and shops. When the changeover from steam to diesel occurred, Lake Barton was converted to a recreational area.
Monon was established about 1888. Meanwhile, a post office had been established a mile and a half north of Monon at Buena Vista in 1879. The name of the post office was changed to Hoisington, in honor of Andrew Jackson Hoisington , in April, 1887. By 1889, the station at Monon was moved to a new rail line which went through Hoisington.
Hoisington Historical Society
For more information on Hoisington's history, contact the Hoisington Historical Society. You can pay them a visit at the Hoisington Historical Museum at 120 E. Second St. or check out their website for additional information: