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Settlers came to this area during the fall and winter of 1883 and the town they settled in was named Rochester. A trading post was set up in 1884, as were a general store and a blacksmith shop. By 1887, the Mulvane and Englewood Railroad built tracks to a newly platted town called New Rochester which was right next to Old Rochester. The businesses mentioned above were closed in Old Rochester.
The names of Old Rochester and New Rochester were too confusing, so the name of the town was changed to Zenda after a book titled "The Prisoner of Zenda". The post office changed its name from Rochester to Zenda on October 7, 1892.
The ethnicity of its settlers is unknown.
"Kingman County History: Kingman County, Kansas and Its People." Kingman, KS: Kingman County Historical Society, 1984.
Kansas State Library - Blue Skyways. October 19, 2005 <http://skyways.lib.ks.us/towns/zenda.html>.
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