Near Lyons in Rice County, Kansas — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)
Coronado and Quivira
Eighty years before the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock, Spanish explorers visited Kansas. Francisco Vasquez de Coronado, seeking gold in New Mexico, was told of Quivira by an Indian called the Turk. Here were "trees hung with golden bells and people whose pots and pans were beaten gold." With 30 picked horsemen and a Franciscan friar named Juan de Padilla, Coronado marched "north by the needle" from a point in Texas until he reached Kansas. Here he found no gold, but a country he described as "the best I have ever seen for producing all the products of Spain." The Turk confessed he had deceived the Spaniards and one night was strangled. For 25 days in the summer of 1541 Coronado remained among the grass-hut villages of the Quivaran Indians, then returned to New Mexico. Padilla went with him, but the following year came back to Quivira as a missionary. Later he was killed by the Indians, the first Christian martyr in the present United States. Near this marker is the site of one of the largest villages of the "Kingdom of Quivira."
Erected by Kansas Historical Society and State HIghway Commission
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Churches & Religion • Exploration • Native Americans. In addition, it is included in the Kansas Historical Society series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1541.
Location. 38° 20.852′ N, 98° 16.57′ W. Marker is near Lyons, Kansas, in Rice County. Marker is at the intersection of Avenue M (U.S. 56) and 12th Road, on the left when traveling west on Avenue M. Marker is at a roadside rest area about three miles west of Lyons. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Lyons KS 67554, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 10 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Cow Creek Station (here, next to this marker); Fray Juan de Padilla (within shouting distance of this marker); Rice County Historical Mural (approx. 3.9 miles away); Civil War and Veterans Memorial (approx. 3.9 miles away); Workman Park (approx. 4.1 miles away); Santa Fe Trail (approx. 4.3 miles away); Veterans Memorial (approx. 7.4 miles away); Cooper Hall (approx. 9½ miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Lyons.
Also see . . .
1. The Kingdom of Quivira. (Submitted on March 8, 2012, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
2. Coronado's Journey. (Submitted on March 8, 2012, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
3. The Journey of Coronado, 1540-1542 . (Submitted on March 8, 2012, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on March 8, 2012, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 578 times since then and 23 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on March 8, 2012, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.