Fun Facts

 

  • Tonganoxie’s lodge remained on a hill just north of 24-40 up Laming Road until 1930.
  • The town of Tonganoxie was founded July 26, 1866.
  • When Kansas was declared a territory in 1854 by the Kansas-Nebraska Act, Fort Leavenworth and the adjacent prison suddenly lay within the national border. As a result, President Franklin Pierce by treaties declared reservations within Kansas for the various indigenous nations, including the relocated Delaware in unincorporated Leavenworth County.
  • Turnpike access opened December 29, 2009.
  • Many businesses are local. Places like Grandpa’s Burger Box have show some reinvestment in town.
  • The “Tonganoxie Split” is a local urban legend that purports the mystical power of the hills to divert severe weather away from the Kansas City metro.
  • Many street names come from families who contributed to Tonganoxie’s history.
  • There are notable old buildings with interesting architecture.
  • The train depot was built in 1868 after the Fort Leavenworth Military Reservation granted rights of way for the Kansas Pacific Railway connection from Fort Leavenworth to the town of Lawrence. Today, this depot is the last standing wooden depot still in its original location in Kansas.
  • The Fairchild Knox Dairy was once the largest dairy production in the state of Kansas. The entire facility is preserved as part of the historical society.
  • There was a natural spring near the Fairchild Knox dairy that boasted a stage coach stop for people traveling west from Kansas City.
  • The Almeda Hotel used to be the Myers Hotel from 1889 to 1931, first operated by Mollie Myers. It was famous for the “cleanest rooms and best cooking west of the Mississippi River.” It hosted people like General “Black Jack” Pershing and Captain Dwight D. Eisenhower (before becoming general and president). Drawing from his experiences at the Myers Hotel, William Inge wrote his famous novel, Bus Stop, which later in 1956 was made into a film that launched the career for actress Marilyn Monroe.
  • Reuchlin Wright, resident of Tonganoxie, published articles about the progress of his brothers, Orville and Wilbur, as they developed the aeroplane.
  • Dr. Stevens has been in family medical practice since 1955 and still practices today. His office procedures remain as they have for decades, doing everything on paper. Each year he checks for a shadow behind “Tonganoxie Phil.”
  • Actress Gene Harlow’s mother lived in Tonganoxie. Gene Harlow was born and spent part of her childhood in Kansas City.
  • The community has a great quality of life with good trails and parks, relational small-town style, beautiful rolling countryside, and convenience to major metropolitan amenities.
  • The VFW Park is a reclaimed illegal dumping area—something dirty turned beautiful by volunteer community effort.

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