Monday, May 25, 2015

New Santa Fe

It was in the village of New Santa Fe that two trails to the West met. One from Westport and one from Independence came through Blue Valley. Today the official Santa Fe Trail marker stands at State Line and the one street of the town at 125th Street. This village of the trail days, as well as Westport, owed its very beginning and the period of its greatest commercial importance to the Santa Fe trade and all commerce to the Southwest. New Santa Fe was created when Dabney Lipscomb and his wife, Elizabeth, on May 6, 1851, deeded a small part of their land for a townsite. The village of New Santa Fe consisted of two general stores, a shoe shop, a drugstore, the Watson Place Inn, a blacksmith shop and the post office, established August 2, 1853, with Benjamin C. Westfall as first postmaster. A saloon was on the state line, making it possible to transact business in Missouri or Kansas, and in the building was Dr. Harrison's office. One of the 
store buildings was built by James Bridger and George W. Kemper. The storekeeper was J.P.Smith.

 Hidden in the Kansas City area is a small waterfalls.
Thousands drive by it each day and don't know it's there or the history that surrounds it. The photo of the falls, below, doesn't show the road just on the other side of the trees~I 435. It also doesn't show all the car dealerships, fast food places, grocery stores, or retail stores that surround this small falls.
The cemetery of New Santa Fe.
 I did find a listing of those buried here.
 Lots of babies didn't make the trip west.
In a far corner is this marker. A replacement marker with only the date of his death.
My research showed no other information, no name or birthdate.
Just the fact that he died a "horse thief".


Cathy Sherman said...

I'm glad you posted on this. I'm still doing "research," ha, ha. So much to know about the Santa Fe, California and Oregon trails. One trail detail leads to another.

I remember just a year ago when a friend told me about the horse thief grave stone, I was surprised that this cemetery even existed. I shopped at the grocery store just half a block away for decades. Yet, the street sign Santa Fe Trail was plainly visible, I just never made that turn. And I sure wouldn't have found the Horse Thief stone had I not been alerted to it, because it was in the farthest corner.

I went there exactly a year ago than when you and I recently went, because the irises and peonies were blooming then, too. It's like entering another world, this little historic spot among the houses of suburbia.

turquoisemoon said...

Cathy, Funny how we drive by sites and never think about it's history.

Linda Starr said...

the horse thief, most amazing headstone i've ever seen

Debra She Who Seeks said...

I suppose The Horse Thief was shot or lynched for the crime. At least he got a headstone.

turquoisemoon said...

Linda, I just wonder if he was hung, or what...

turquoisemoon said...

Debra...I'll bet he was lynched. That's what they did to horse thieves. I just heard that this crime was just as bad as murder, back then.

Out on the prairie said...

To replace that stone maybe shows someone used to take care of this area , possibly to attract visitors. I had never heard of it myself.

turquoisemoon said...

Steve, I have no idea. hmmm???