The town of Greensburg, Kansas was destroyed by an EF5 tornado in 2007, and has since rebuilt as a model "green town" using eco-friendly technologies and materials.

Marion County, Kansas, located in the central part of the state, has a rich history tracing back to the mid-19th century. The area was originally inhabited by Native American tribes, including the Osage and Kaw, who utilized the land for hunting and gathering. In 1855, the region became the first organized county in Kansas Territory and was named after American Revolutionary War general Francis Marion.

Settlers began arriving in Marion County in the 1850s, attracted by its fertile soil and ideal farming conditions. The county quickly developed into an agricultural hub, with crops like wheat, corn, and vegetables becoming major staples. Towns such as Marion and Florence sprouted up to support the growing population and serve as trade centers.

Throughout its history, Marion County witnessed several significant events. During the Civil War, tensions rose as pro-slavery and anti-slavery settlers clashed, leading to skirmishes and disturbances in the county. The arrival of the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway in the late 19th century further catalyzed the county's growth, with new opportunities for trade and transportation becoming available.

In the early 20th century, Marion County experienced both successes and challenges. The county's population peaked in the 1920s, but the Great Depression and the Dust Bowl of the 1930s hit the region hard, causing significant economic hardship. However, the county rebounded after the dust storms, and the agriculture and manufacturing sectors continued to play vital roles in its economy.

Today, Marion County retains its predominantly rural character but offers a diverse mix of farming, manufacturing, and tourism industries. The county's rich history, showcased by well-preserved prairie-style architecture and numerous historical sites, attracts visitors interested in exploring its past. Marion County remains a testament to the resilience and determination of its inhabitants throughout the years.

  • 1860: Marion County established as a county in Kansas
  • 1866: First European settlers arrive in Marion County
  • 1878: Marion County Courthouse is built in Marion
  • 1887: Santa Fe Railroad comes to Marion County
  • 1893: Chingawasa Springs, a popular resort, opens in Marion County
  • 1904: Marion Reservoir is constructed for irrigation and recreation
  • 1930s: Marion County experiences severe drought during the Dust Bowl era
  • 1943: Camp Phillips, a U.S. Army training center, is established in Marion County
  • 1969: Marion County Park and Lake is opened to the public
  • 1990s: Marion County's population starts to decline due to rural depopulation
  • 2001: Marion County Old Settlers' Day celebration is established