Link to



Filed under: prairie musings, Drovers, Todd & Karen Britton — Peg Britton @ 2:39 pm

From C of C Ambassador son, Todd:

On behalf of the National Drovers Hall of Fame, the Ellsworth-Kanopolis Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors invites and encourages your attendance at a Town Hall meeting at the Ellsworth City Hall meeting room on Wednesday, June, 1st, 7:00pm. The purpose is to share information on the Kansas 150th Anniversary Celebration Cattle Drive which concludes its 200 mile trek in Ellsworth on Saturday, September 24th. Celebration volunteers  will be needed in order to make this one of the most outstanding events in Ellsworth history. Opportunities for fund raising for local organizations will be available.
Make plans for representatives from your organization to attend and become active in the planning and execution process.



Filed under: prairie musings, Ellsworth, Drovers — Peg Britton @ 3:03 pm


Photo by Mark Inman Seitz

Cattle drive and Ellsworth history aficionados long will remember the September 2007 cattle drive and associated festivities commemorating the 140th year since the founding of Ellsworth in 1867.  The streets of Ellsworth were filled with reenactments of our days of yore.

The 140 trophy Texas Longhorns of 2007 parade fame will be replaced by 400 thundering head of cattle, much to the delight of local and area residents, ex-pats and friends who like to experience a touch of the old West.  The Longhorns will be 200 miles weary by the time they reach Douglas Avenue in downtown Ellsworth.

The long-abandoned Ellsworth Cox Cattle Trail will be used to move the cattle from Caldwell Oklahoma to Ellsworth.  Four hundred head of Texas Longhorn cattle will be gathered just south of Caldwell, in Oklahoma over the weekend of September 3rd & 4th in preparation for the long drive.   The drive will pass through Kingman and Ellinwood.  This is as it once was when the cattle were driven along this trail to reach the shipping town of Ellsworth where cattle were moved back east on the Kansas Pacific Railroad.

As was the case during those trail drivin’ days,  the trail boss will be in charge of two chuck wagons, four “cookies,” seven drovers, seven “guest” drovers, a string of horses, and, a wild herd of Longhorn cattle.  There will be an opportunity this year for guest drovers to sign on with the outfit for one week or the entire three weeks.

From Sumner County Economic Development:

The route follows the old Cox Cattle Trail to the Kansas Pacific Railhead at Ellsworth. The trail was originally blazed in 1873. Modern cowboys will trail cattle on the very same route used by original drovers, bed down the cattle on historic bed grounds and camp at the very same cow camps that made the cowboy famous. The herd will cross rolling prairie and ascend a “ladder of rivers.” Each rung of the drive is marked by Fall Creek, Bluff Creek, and Sand Creek before crossing the Chikaskia River.

Each week will offer new adventures. At the South Fork of the Ninnescah River the cattle will arrive at Kingman, Kansas, on Saturday September 9th. Kingman is planning a 150th Anniversary Blow Out September 9th-11th. September 12th the herd leaves Kingman crossing the North Fork of the Ninnescah River. Antelope, Indian Run, Rattlesnake, and Salt Creeks guide the trail drivers ever northward for another five days on the trail before reaching the Arkansas River and Ellinwood, Kansas. Saturday morning, September 17th, the Kansas 150th Anniversary Cattle Drive will trail down Ellinwood’s Main Street. Ellinwood’s 150th Kansas Anniversary Celebration will be held September 17-18. The final leg of the Kansas 150th Anniversary Cattle Drive will leave Ellinwood September 19th trailing five days crossing Cow Creek, Plum Creek, and the Ox Hide, leading drovers and cattle to the Smoky Hill River and the end of the trail cattle town of Ellsworth, Kansas.

We’ll be keeping those “dogies” rollin’ for Ellsworth and the end of our drive. The old cattle town will be waiting anxiously for the cattle to arrive. Come celebrate the 150th Kansas Anniversary in true cowboy style, at the End of the Trail!

The Kansas 150th Anniversary Cattle Drive has been named one of American Cowboy Magazine’s Best of the West Top 101 Western Events. For more information contact the Trail Boss, Mike Clover, 718 Cedar Street, Kingman, Kansas, 67068. Phone 620-532-3455.

Mark your calendars, save the weekend and plan to be in Ellsworth at the “End of the Trail”.

Thanks for tuning in…



Filed under: prairie musings, Ellsworth, History, Drovers — Peg Britton @ 8:21 am


A blog reader was viewing this photo this morning and I thought I’d post it again.  I just love it as it brings back many wonderful memories of an historic  weekend when we had the Great American Cattle Drive as a fundraiser for the Drover Building, at the right.  Here is the original posting from the last weekend in Sept. 2007.

Below is the Drover Hall of Fame building that was the object of the fundraiser of the Great American Cattle Drive.  The building has been stabilized and the exterior restored.  Money is needed now for restoring the interior.  Compare the building in the two pictures.




Filed under: prairie musings, Drovers — Peg Britton @ 1:10 pm

There is a crew working on the Insurance Building today, starting the renovation of this signature building with its distinctive oriel. What a good sign.

Ellsworth’s location, combined with its history as a rail head for the shipment of cattle, provides the ideal environment for the National Drovers Hall of Fame to operate successfully as a museum with interactive exhibits and research facilities. As the cattle drives themselves, the Drovers Hall of Fame is expected to extend its appeal beyond the borders of Ellsworth County and even Kansas.

As a result, the restoration of Ellsworth’s Signature Insurance Building and its operation should create a positive economic impact on the community of several million dollars, through the initial construction phase and later through the creation of jobs and and attraction to draw visitors to the town and region.

The National Drovers Hall of Fame will house static and interactive displays, including “on the trail” experiences for visitors. It also will contain a research facility to trace the past and present of the current cattle industry and its practitioners.

Information collected in Ellsworth will be part of an extensive library devoted to the history of the livestock industry. A theater will allow for seminars and public performances related to the Drover, American’s First Real Cowboy, and other subjects. It also will offer Ellsworth County and the surrounding area a venue for live performances, much like the Opera Houses of the early 100s. The opportunities presented by the national Drovers Hall of Fame and limited only by the imagination. The board’s vision targets the facility as a place of education, entertainment and community.

As with most projects of this magnitude, the National Drovers Hall of Fame will be completed in phases. The board considers its first priority to be the restoration of the building. The project’s financial plan is broken into three parts:

  • $1.9 million - renovation of the building for public, administrative, exhibition and support functions. Total area: 10,900 square feet.
  • $2.9 million for public exhibition and theater space. Total area: 10,210 square feet.
  • $475,000 - for research library, work room and storage, rotating exhibit space and museum workshop. Total are: 5,000 square feet.

The National Drovers Hall of Fame is a 501-C non-profit entity under the federal rules and regulation of the Internal Revenue Service. All contributions are tax deductible.

Your contribution will allow directors to turn the vision of the National Drovers Hall of Fame into reality - for the residents of Central Kansas and beyond and for those who contributed to an industry that in many ways help symbolize our nation’s spirit of independence.

Contributions to: National Drovers Hall of Fame, 210 N. Douglas, Ellsworth KS 67439

Information: Mark Roehrman 785.472.4670


Powered by WordPress