Ulysses, KS

Town in Grant County, KS

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Sponsors of Ulysses, KS

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About Ulysses, KS

In 1831, south of the future site of Ulysses, Kansas, then a part of Northern Mexico Territory, mountain man and explorer, Jedediah Smith, was killed by Comanche warriors, on May 27, 1831. The first Ulysses, town, founded in June 1885, was located approximately two miles east of present-day Ulysses. Approximately six weeks later Ulysses' first newspaper, The Grant County Register, began publication.

From February 1892 through August 1893, Ulysses had two weekly newspapers, The Ulysses Tribune and The Grant County Republican; both papers were political in nature. The Grant County Republican represented the Republican Party, and The Ulysses Tribune represented the Alliance Party. The Grant County Republican constitutes the predecessor of the current day The Ulysses News, which claims to be Grant County, Kansas oldest surviving business, although it has operated under numerous names, editor/publishers, and management.

In The Grant County Register, Volume 1, #1, dated July 21, 1885, the following story was published:

"Ulysses, everything is newness and bustle, when a month ago on the 7th of June six thousand head of cattle were rounded up on a gentle western slope near a beautiful lake. Now there is a bustling, prosperous young city, and all the country is dotted with settlements. The town company offers fine inducements to all wanting to embark in business, no better location can be found. We have several buildings already up, and a good hotel with 16 rooms.

Another publication, the Ulysses Tribune, published in March 1887:

"Ulysses is the booming town of old Grant County, Kansas. The old county lines will be established by the present legislature beyond doubt, and Ulysses is bound to be the county seat. Ulysses has more natural advantages than any other town in western Kansas. She is on the direct line of the new east and west railroad, and a railroad is to be built from Lakin south to Ulysses, thus insuring her of two railroads. In other towns water is to be found at a depth of one to three hundred feet, but in Ulysses pure water is found at 30 feet.

In its prime, "Old" Ulysses boasted four hotels (the most notable, Hotel Edwards, pictured herein, which was moved to "New Ulysses" in 1909, and has been preserved/restored, currently resting on the grounds of The Historic Adobe Museum for Grant County, Kansas today), twelve restaurants, twelve saloons, a bank, six gambling houses, a large schoolhouse, a church, a newspaper office, and an opera house to serve the approximately 1500 residents. When Old Ulysses moved to New Ulysses in 1909, the opera house was set in what is today the front lawn of the current day court house, where it was converted into being the Grant County courthouse, with county offices on the first floor, and high school classes being held on the second floor, until the first dedicated building for a high school was put in service in 1923. During the 1930s WPA era, the current Grant County courthouse was constructed behind it, and this building was destroyed

Businesses of Ulysses, KS

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Grant County, KS

Visit our county page and you will find information about our town and county's points of interest, festivals/events and faith community. You also will learn about the community organizations that have built and continue to build strong communities (chambers, community groups, and departments, etc) and much more when you visit the Grant County, KS page.