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Douglas County, Kansas

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Please add profiles of those who were born, lived or died in Douglas County, Kansas.

Official Website

In 1855, Douglas County was established. Douglas County was opened for settlement on May 15, 1854, and was named for Stephen A. Douglas, a senator from Illinois. The county was practically at the center of the Bleeding Kansas years as leaders in Lecompton (the territorial capital) wanted Kansas to be a slave state, whereas leaders in Lawrence wanted Kansas to be a free state. The pro- and anti-slavery settlers held great animosity towards one another, leading to many events, such as the drafting of the Lecompton Constitution (which would have admitted Kansas into the Union as a slave state), the Wakarusa War (1855), the Sack of Lawrence (1856), Battle of Black Jack (1856), and the Lawrence Massacre (1863).

Two significant wagon trails passed through near Lawrence. The Santa Fe Trail went just South of town, through Baldwin City. The Oregon Trail went right over the top of Mount Oread.

Lawrence was a chief station on the Underground Railroad.

Adjacent Counties

Cities & Townships

  • Baldwin City
  • Clinton
  • Eudora
  • Grant
  • Kanwaka
  • Lawrence (County Seat)
  • Lecompton
  • Marion
  • Palmyra (was Calhoun)
  • Wakarusa
  • Washington
  • Willow Springs

Other Communities: Big Springs, Black Jack, Clearfield, Globe, Grover, Hesper, Lake View, Lone Star, Midland, Pleasant Grove, Sibleyville, Stull, Vinland and Worden



National Regsiter of Historic Places

Historic Trails of Douglas County

The Kansas Network To Freedom

KS Gen Web

Genealogy Trails