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Bourbon County courthouse in Fort Scott, Kansas. Photo by Susan Howell.
 Bourbon County Courthouse

 Bourbon County

Location of Bourbon County, Kansas
County Seat: Fort Scott
Founded: 1855
    · 15,379 (2000)
    · 14,966 (1990)
    · 24,712 (1900)
Area: 638 Square Miles 
Standard Abbreviation: BB 



Map of Bourbon County, KS in 1899
Organized in 1855.  County seat Ft. Scott.  Received its name from Bourbon County, Ky., the latter having been one of the nine counties organized in 1785 by the Virginia legislature, before Kentucky became an independent state.  It was so called as a compliment to the Bourbon dynasty of France, a prince of that family (then on the throne) having rendered the American colonies important aid in men and money in their great struggle for independence.  Colonel Samuel A. Williams, a native of Bourbon county, Ky., was a member of the House from Fort Scott in 1855, and it was at his request that the county was so named.  He was mustered in as Captain of Company I, Second Kansas Cavalry, November 22, 1861, and resigned March 28, 1862.  He died at his old home, Fort Scott, in August, 1873.
Map and text from History of Kansas, Noble Prentis, (Winfield: E.P. Greer. 1899)
William G. Cutler's History of Kansas, first published in 1883, tells about early Bourbon County.
The Special Collections of the Ablah Library at WSU contain historical images of Fort Scott and Bronson.
The Kansas State Historical Society also has more historical data for Bourbon County online including a rich bibliography and lists of cemeteries, post offices, and newspapers.

Cities, Towns, & Villages of Bourbon County

    Town                Population  ZIP         Year  Elevation
    =================   ==========  =========   ====  =========
    Barnesville                                          868
    Berlin                                               908
    Bronson                    346  66716               1065
    Devon                           66730                867
    Edward                                               920
    Fort Scott               8,297  66701       1842     846
    Fulton                     184  66738                850
    Garland                         66741                900
    Godfrey                                              960
    Hammond                                              870
    Harding                                              850
    Hiattville                                           995
    Hollister                                            885
    Mapleton                    98  66754                878
    Marmaton                                             850
    Pawnee Station                                       990
    Petersburg                                           909
    Porterville                                         1009
    Redfield                   140  66769                853
    Ronald                                               907
    Uniontown                  288  66779                895
    Xenia                                               1047
Census Bureau Profile & Map

Special Places in Bourbon County

  • The Victorian mansions along south National street in Fort Scott are unbelievable.
  • The U. S. National No. 1 at Fort Scott is a soldier's cemetery that is older than Arlingtion National Cemetery.
  • The Visitor's Information Center next to the old fort is a great source for brochures and information about attractions all over Kansas.
  • Downtown Fort Scott has a wonderful assortment of nineteenth century buildings.

Special Events in Bourbon County

Bourbon County School Systems

Colleges & Universities


  • Mercy Hospital   (620) 223-2200
    821 Burke St. / Fort Scott, KS 66701


  • Bronson Public Library   (620) 939-4910
    411 Clay Street / Bronson, KS 66716
  • Fort Scott Public Library   (620) 223-2882
    Second & National / Fort Scott, KS 66701-1398


  • Fort Scott National Historic Site   (620) 223-0310
    Old Fort Blvd / Fort Scott, KS 66701
    Restored frontier Dragoon post with 20 buildings
  • Ralph Richards Museum  (620) 223-5443
    117 S. Main / Fort Scott, KS 66701
  • Lyons House   (620) 223-0779 1872 Mansion
    742 S. National / Fort Scott, KS 66701


More Data About Bourbon County

Economic Development
  • Kansas County Profile Reports
    Statistical data from The Institute for Policy and Social Research, the University of Kansas
Health Data


Bourbon County Offices


  • WPA The WPA Guide to 1930s Kansas (Lawrence: University Press of Kansas. 1984) See pages 192-197.
Fort Scott Chamber of Commerce
(620) 223-3566
(800) 245-FORT
231 E. Wall St., Fort Scott, KS 66701

Last updated on November 29, 2009 by COUNTIES@KSLIB.INFO
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Graphics by John Howell,
photos by Susan Howell,
used by permission.