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List of Kansas Counties

Avilla | Coldwater | Gilead

Homesteading in Comanche County

Comanche County map
Prentis, Noble Lovely. "History of Kansas". Winfield, KS: E. P. Greer, 1899.

Comanche County was first started in 1873. The county was started fraudulently by a group of men wishing to obtain money from the government. These men used several officials and an old hotel registry to obtain money for schools, bridges, and a courthouse. The county was first politically represented in 1874, but it was a county with no residents.

The first real residents of the region were Indians of the Comanche, Kiowa, Cheyenne, Arapaho, and Plains Apache Indians. They camped along the streams and hunted bison on the prairie. The southern part of Comanche County was once Indian Territory. In 1878 the Cheyenne left their reservation in Oklahoma and made their way to Kansas toward what they still considered their homeland: Comanche County.

In the late 1800's the county began to thrive and was once populated with over twenty townships and post offices. Coldwater was established as the county seat in 1885. All that remains today of this agricultural community is the towns of Coldwater, Protection, Wilmore, a local church, and a few houses of the once populated town of Buttermilk.

Gilead was a settlement founded by Rumanian Jews who came to the area in 1886. German settlers founded a town called Avilla before 1890, but it did not last.


Contact Us:

Comanche County Historical Museum
105 W. Main
Coldwater, KS 67029
(620) 582-2108

Coldwater-Wilmore Regional Library
221 E. Main
Coldwater, KS 67029
(620) 582-2333


Life As It Should Be: Comanche County, Kansas. Coldwater: Comanche County Economic Development Foundation, 1999.

Comanche County Historical Society, ed. Comanche County History. Dallas: Taylor Publishing, 1981.


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   Hays, KS 67601
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   Hays, KS 67601-4099