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a city in Ellis County; population ~2,080

location of Ellis

Ellis, Kansas

The Kansas Pacific Railroad established a water station on the tracks at the site of present-day Ellis in 1867, and later purchased the site for $1200 through the Homestead Act. An officially recognized post office was established on June 27, 1870. The railroad laid out the town in 1873, establishing a depot, hotel, and a few shops, and settlers began arriving to work for the railroad that same year.

Beginning in 1875, Ellis became a shipping point for cattle herds, and remained so for nearly five years. On January 10, 1888, the City of Ellis was incorporated as a Third Class City.

John Henry, a Union Pacific dispatcher in Ellis, invented the electric streetcar in 1882.

Early Ellis residents Walter and Roy Cross developed the "Cross Process," a method of converting kerosene, natural gas, oil or fuel oil into gasoline that was used widely across the United States.

Walter P. Chrysler, who grew up in Ellis and learned about mechanical repair and machinery in the Ellis Union Pacific shop, used this knowledge to found the Chrysler Corporation.

In 1896, the women's "Law and Order Committee" slate won the local election, and Ellis' all-woman council and a lady mayor became one of the first such groups in the United States.

Official Websites

City of Ellis
Ellis Public Schools

See Also

Walter P. Chrysler

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The Robinson Library >> Kansas >> Cities and Towns

This page was last updated on November 18, 2018.