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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Near Ravanna in Finney County, Kansas — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)
 

Beersheba

 
 
Beersheba Marker image. Click for full size.
Courtesy of Elizabeth Winter, May 2, 2014
1. Beersheba Marker
Inscription.  In 1882 the first Jewish agricultural colony in Kansas was established when some 60 recently arrived Jewish immigrants from Russia, sponsored by the Hebrew Union Agricultural Society, settled northeast of here along Pawnee Creek. Named for the ancient city of Beersheba, the colony stretched over several sections of land, each family homesteading 150 acres. Dugouts and sod houses were constructed for homes, a synagogue, and school. Cow chips were used for fuel. Wells were dug and the native prairie was plowed and planted. Within the first few months, a wedding took place, a baby was born, and the first death occurred.

Farming proved to be unprofitable and severe winters produced hardships. To supplement their meager incomes, colonists sold their equipment and livestock, took jobs with the railroad, mortgaged their land, and established businesses in nearby Ravanna and Eminence. As the two towns died out in the 1890s after a bitter county seat battle lost by both towns, the colonists sold or abandoned their homesteads. A decade after the colony was established, none of the colonists remained and the land reverted to prairie.
 
Erected by

Beersheba Marker image. Click for full size.
Courtesy of Elizabeth Winter, May 2, 2014
2. Beersheba Marker
Kansas Historical Society and Kansas Department of Transportation. (Marker Number 12.)
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Settlements & Settlers. In addition, it is included in the Kansas Historical Society series list.
 
Location. 38° 3.561′ N, 100° 27.706′ W. Marker is near Ravanna, Kansas, in Finney County. Marker is at the intersection of Kansas Route 156 and Kansas Route 23, on the right when traveling west on State Route 156. Located in rest area. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Cimarron KS 67835, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on November 17, 2020. It was originally submitted on November 16, 2020, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama. This page has been viewed 47 times since then and 6 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on November 16, 2020, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama.
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Feb. 26, 2021