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of the center of the State, and flowing south of east about one hundred and twenty-five miles, crosses the State line near Fort Scott, and becomes the Osage River of Missouri.

Spring River enters Kansas from Missouri, and flows about thirty miles in the southeast corner of this State, whence it enters the Indian Territory.


Old building erected 1865.

The Neosho River rises near the center of the State, receives the Cottonwood and other confluent streams, flows southeast a distance of about two hundred miles, and enters the Indian Territory twenty-five miles west of the southeastern corner of Kansas.

The Cottonwood, which enters the Neosho near Emporia, is much the larger stream at their junction. It is about one hundred miles long.

The Verdigris River flows south nearly parallel to the Neosho, and enters the Indian Territory about one hundred miles from its source. It receives Fall River on the west, which is about sixty miles long.

The Arkansas River rises far up among the Rocky Mountains in the South Park of Colorado, and receives many tributaries in the latter State. It crosses three-fourths of the length of Kansas, flowing east and southeast, and with its tributaries, waters twothirds of Southern Kansas. It then flows through. the northeastern one-third of the Indian Territory, receiving all the remaining streams of Southern Kansas, crosses the State of Arkansas, and enters the Mississippi River midway between Memphis and Vicksburg. Its entire length is more than two thousand miles; its windings in Kansas must amount to about five hundred miles.

The first tributary of the Arkansas, commencing on the north or east side, near the south line of the State, at Arkansas City, is the Walnut, which flows from the north a distance of about seventy-five miles, receiving as tributary, the Whitewater. At Wichita the Arkansas receives the Little Arkansas, a deep flowing river, about seventy-five miles in length, Next comes in the Cow Creek, nearly as long, and at Fort Zarah, on the northernmost part of the Big Bend of the Arkansas, Walnut River enters from the west, it being about one hundred miles long. Beyond are Ash Creek, Pawnee Fork, &c. On the south or west side of the Arkansas it receives the Sha-kus-ka, the Nin-ne-scah or Good River, the Cow Skin and others, from fifty to seventy-five miles long.

In the southwestern corner of Kansas the Cimarron flows a considerable distance in the State and receives the waters of Medicine Lodge, Mule Creek,

Nes-cu-tun-ga, Bluff Creek, &c., each from fifty to one hundred miles long. This region has not yet been surveyed, so that these streams, as well as streams of importance in Northwestern Kansas, are not put down on the map. There are numerous streams from twenty-five to seventy-five miles long, including tributaries of the Republican and Solomon Rivers, which have not been mentioned.

The rivers named above, with their innumerable tributaries, fed by rivulets flowing from never-failing springs, have given to Kansas its reputation of being the best watered region of all the prairie States.


To describe the surface and scenery of Kansas so that it can be appreciated by those who have never seen a prairie State is quite impossible, and scarcely less difficult is it to describe it to one who has only seen the flat prairies of Central Illinois. In general it may be called an undulating plateau, the surface of which very gently slopes from the western line, which has an altitude of about thirty-five hundred feet above the ocean, to the eastern line, which is seven hundred and fifty feet above the ocean at the mouth of the Kansas River.

The rise of the first one hundred miles on the Kansas Pacific Railroad from the Eastern State line to Wamego is two hundred and fifty-four feet; for the second hundred miles to Brookville the rise is three hundred and forty-eight feet; the rise of the third hundred miles to Ellis is seven hundred and sixty-nine feet, and the rise thence to Eagle Tail which is near the Western State line is thirteen hundred and seventeen feet.

The interval lands along the water courses, called bottoms, are from one fourth of a mile to three miles in width, but towards the western part of the State

are sometimes from five to ten miles wide. None of the bottom land in the State is regularly subject to overflow and when high waters occur on a few streams they subside in three or four days. The ordinary flow of water, in the larger streams, is fifteen or twenty feet below the surface of the bottom lands, almost invariably insuring perfect drainage. The bottoms in the eastern half of the State are about equally divided between wooded and open lands.

Leaving the bottoms, one comes upon the next highest surface called second bottom. This formation is almost entirely absent from many streams of the State, and it varies so much in different places that it can hardly be described. It varies in extent from a narrow belt, to a width of two or three miles, and usually rises gently as it recedes from the stream. The surface is diversified by gentle rolls ordinarily running nearly at right angles with the streams, with their crowns from an eighth to a half mile apart and rising twenty to forty feet above the intervening depressions.

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Back from the second bottoms the traveler strikes the bluffs which rise to a hight of from fifty to two hundred or three hundred feet, with a slope of about twenty to thirty degrees. Once upon the summit of the bluff the traveler sees stretching before him what we term the upland prairies, a succession of rolls similar to those upon the second bottom, but with much longer slopes forming a series of earthy billows. Their crests or summits are from a quarter of a mile to a mile apart, and perhaps twenty to eighty feet above the intervening depression or miniature valley. Down many of these little valleys flow rills of clear water, frequently making a narrow gulley as they break through the bluffs and near the streams to which they are tributary.

These rills, which sometimes attain the dignity and

names of creeks are, in Eastern Kansas, usually fringed with timber as they approach the main stream. On the upper front of the bluffs, ledges frequently crop out in bold parapets a few feet high, and along the crests of the large prairie rolls these ledges wind like ribbons around the irregular face.

There is no portion of the State which is flat and and monotonous, or cut up by disagreeable and inconvenient gullies and ravines. The western half of the State is not so much diversified in its scenery, but it has everywhere a rolling and varied surface.

No other such scene is to be found in the United States as presents itself to the traveler who stands upon one of the higher Kansas bluffs. The patient reader, wearied by the formal description we have given of the surface of the country, must now give scope to his imagination else he will not see Kansas as it is. Nature, ever symmetrical in her combina tions, is irregular in all her details, and nowhere is this better shown than in the picture we are contemplating. The prairie rolls vary in direction and size nearly as much as the streams and bluffs, and in some localities they are short and comparatively sharp, while in a mile or two they so broaden their extent and lower their surfaces as to appear nearly level to one from a mountainous region. No two streams or bottoms or bluffs or prairies are alike in all this beautiful country. Here is a broad valley miles in extent, and embracing in itself and its surroundings many of the features we have so imperfectly detailed. The bluffs advance and recedé at capricious pleasure: on one side of the stream pushing their promontory fronts like the parapets of some vast fortification full into the low lands, or not far away closing nearly together upon either side of the stream, or again with gentle descent approach their grass clad slopes till their harmonious shades mingle with the rich verdure of the forests below.

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