On Saturday April 28, I made an afternoon trip to Caldwell in Sumner County, Kansas. While I had stopped briefly before, I was determined this time to more fully experience the town. I found a town that embraces it's Cowtown past, yet seems to have a core group of businesses and services to keep the town healthy. The people I met and talked with were friendly and willing to share when I asked questions, but this was no surprise since I find this true all around Kansas.
As I drove around town, I found at least 8 churches, a full range of schools, an active COOP, many historic buildings, and a well stocked grocery store, which seemed to be the hub of activity that afternoon. I also noticed a medical clinic, hospital, Carnegie Library, and several restaurants, which I did not get the opportunity to sample.
I also found several examples of art including the Heritage Mural in the downtown park, the "Cowboys Chasing Cattle" mural in the Post Office, the Coca Cola sign, the 'Ghost Riders of the Chisholm Trail" silhouette south of town, and even a silhouette of a bank robber escaping down a rope on the bank building.
My favorite part of the afternoon was parking along Main Street and spending nearly an hour walking both sides of the 4 block long former Cowtown district. They have placed about 20 signs with historic information about events and businesses / buildings that operated during the Cowtown days. This is certainly one of the best examples of a self-guided tour I have yet found around Kansas.
Finally, after spending at least 2 hours in town, I made a hurried trip home to Wichita because of impending thunderstorms. I took about 170 photos - you may see an online gallery of some of these at the link below.
Caldwell Home Page: http://caldwellkansas.com/
My photo gallery: http://ke2013.smugmug.com/gallery/8021753_R5Vjq#521823161_fYHxi