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About Hays, Kansas

Hays, Kansas is the largest city in northwestern Kansas, and it is the economic and cultural center of the region. Known primarily for being a college town, Hays is home to Fort Hays State University. Hays has a population of around 20,000 people. In its early years, Hays City was a violent frontier town characteristic of the American Old West. More than 30 homicides occurred in or near the town between 1867 and 1873, and it was the location of the original Boot Hill. Several notable figures of the Old West lived in Hays City at points, including George Custer and his wife Elizabeth, Calamity Jane, and Wild Bill Hickok, who served a brief term as sheriff in 1869. Hays City became the county seat of Ellis County in 1870. By 1872, many of the rougher elements of the populace had left, mainly for Dodge City, and Hays City became more civilized. In 1885, the town was incorporated, and “City” was dropped from its name. Hays began to modernize in the early 1900s with a power plant, waterworks, telephone exchange, and sewer system complete by 1911. Over the following decades, the city evolved into a regional economic hub. Development of oil fields in […]

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