Welcome to Ness County!
Old Settler's Festival-June 3-6, 2015
Ness County is comprised of approximately 1080 square miles of rolling prairies in the west-central region of Kansas. The area is steeped in historical and cultural significance, and derives the majority of its business from strong agriculture and oilfield industries.
Ness County is named for Noah Van Ness, who served as a Corporal with the 7th Kansas Cavalry during the Civil War, and died of wounds he received during campaigning near Abbeville, Mississippi. This fact is only fitting, since less than a decade later, one of the most colorful Cavalry officers of the era, George Custer, had his first exposure to the tactics of the Plains Indians along a fork of the Pawnee River in south-east Ness County.
Other notable points of interest include the homestead of George Washington Carver, who farmed in southwest Ness County for a time before returning east to complete his formal education, eventually becoming a renowned agricultural research scientist and scholar.
The Ness City Opera House was a cultural magnet during the frontier period of western expansion through this region, drawing patrons for 50 or more miles in any direction. The historical Ness County Bank Building, constructed in 1898, is locally referred to as the "Skyscraper of the Plains," and was for decades the tallest building between Topeka and Denver. After nearly twenty years of community-driven restoration, the elegance of the architecture and the original furnishings can be appreciated by visiting the Prairie Merchantile, a small specialty boutique featuring Kansas products in the lower level.