Council Grove, Kansas on the Neosho river is by far one of the most historic places along length of the Santa Fe Trail. The site was named by Commissioner George Sibley when he was on the 1825 survey of the Santa Fe Trail. At this time he made a treaty with the Osage Indians for safe passage for the wagon trains going to Santa Fe.
For many years after the Santa Fe Trail was opened, Council Grove was the only trading post between Independence, Missouri and Santa Fe, New Mexico. Council Grove was the rendezvous of westward bound travelers and freighters and traders who were crossing the plains.
Also in Council Grove is the Hays House, said to be the oldest continuously operating restaurant west of the Mississippi River, was founded by Seth M. Hays.
With 12 registered historic sites and a carefully preserved past, Council Grove remains a treasure trove of history. Once a bustling rendezvous point on the Santa Fe Trail, Council Grove today attracts caravans of a different sort; tourists and history buffs eager to relive the trail days' spirit. A Council Grove brochure, free at the Visitors Bureau and at most businesses takes you on a self-guided tour of 18 historic sites around the area.
Santa Fe Trail Research Site
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Larry & Carolyn
St. John, Ks.