History

The fertile land of northwest Kansas was once covered with buffalo grass, which was ideal grazing ground for large herds of bison.

In the 1880s cattlemen formed large cattle companies and used the land for grazing large herds. One of the largest cattle companies was the Northwestern Land Cattle Company. Partners of the Northwestern Land Cattle Company, realizing the need for a town, formed the Northwestern Town Site Company and purchased 160 acres of land in the center of Section 36.

Since Benjamin Bird was the president of the newly formed company and a well-respected person in the community, the town Bird City was named. Although the community was named after him, Benjamin Bird was not born, did not die, and never resided here. Several avenues in the town were named honoring other members of the Northwestern Town Site Company, including Ketcham, Pen, Demick, Cave, Rich and Burr.

Two different historical websites have been created on the history of Bird City, KS. They both have great information including some neat, old photos from the early days of Bird City.

Ted Glasco (1993 graduate of Cheylin) created the website www.history.birdcityks.com and has done a great job maintaing this site for people interested in the community and its history. He has made this site accessible for others to add their own stories and photos pertaining to the history of Bird City.

Wanda Dowdy and Dorothy Mast (Bird City residents and members of the Bird City Historical Association) created the website www.birdcityhistory.com prior to Bird City's 125th Celebration in 2010. They continue to add historical information, stories and old pictures of Bird City.

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