Grant County once supported more than a dozen towns, only three remain today --
Ryus, though the latter two are incorporated and very small.
Hickok - An unincorporated small town located
along U.S. 160, about seven miles east of Ulysses. Though the town was
never as big as others that have long gone extinct, such as
Zionville, it remains
populated today. The Atchison, Topeka
& Santa Fe Railroad barreled through the small town in the early 20th
Century, which was probably the reason for its existence. The town has no
open retail businesses but two large grain elevators tower above Highway
160 on both sides. Somewhere along the line the Cimarron Valley Railroad
took over the tracks of the Atchison, Topeka
& Santa Fe Railroad and the trains continue to operate through the town.
Several small homes are scattered about the small town, as well as a
number of buildings that appear to have held businesses at one time. The
small town never had a post office.
The Santa Fe Trail passed about 7
½ miles south of Hickok. The location is designated with a
Daughters of the American Revolution marker. To reach the marker travel
south off Highway 160 on Road R, six miles to Road 19, the west
1 ½ miles. The
marker sits on the north side of the road.
West of Hickok on the south side of Highway 160 is a residence that
was very clearly a school at one time. Behind the building, a brick
outhouse and playground equipment still stand. We have been unable to
identify the school. If you know more about
this building, we would love to update our story. Just zap us an
Another unincorporated town situated on
the original Atchison, Topeka
& Santa Fe Railroad, Ryus remains very small today. It too was probably
formed as a railroad town, but was also populated by employees of the area
Carbon Black Plant. It is located about 14 miles southeast of Ulysses at
the intersection of the Cimarron Valley Railroad and Kansas Highway 190.
Another Santa Fe Trail marker, also
established by the Daughters of the American Revolution, lies midway
between Ryus and Hickok. it is located south of U.S. highway 160, about
1.9 miles on the west side of Road V.