Famous sights and popular tourist attractions here in Ashland
KANSAS' LARGEST BARN QUILT
A must see in Ashland is the Kansas’ Largest Barn Quilt. The spectacular sight measures whopping 32' x 16'! The center of the quilt is comprised of four sunflower themed quilts measuring four feet by four feet. Surrounding the center are 48 quilts, two feet by two feet, of various themes. Many depict local organizations and interests. All of the quilts were donated by women and men from Ashland and the surrounding area. Patriotic quilts will be surrounded by more classic and original quilts. It is truly a magnificent and colorful piece of art.
Brilliantly colored, the quilt is a delightful sight. Certainly worth the stop!
The quilt is located on the north outside wall of Venture Foods, owned by Brad and Heather McCann, 803 Main Street. Stop inside the store, grab a drink and snack and sign our guest book! We’d love to have you visit.
ST. JACOB'S WELL
"Well" worth a visit by Lynne Hewes
Great things often come in small packages for the adventurous summer tourist in Kansas. One of those great things, fairly well hidden from the view of most passersby, is a serendipitous spot of nature called St. Jacob's Well.
Located approximately 15 miles south of Minneola on U.S. Highway 283, you'll find a Kansas historical marker describing the Big Basin and Little Basin area there and a pool of water known as St. Jacob's Well.
According to the marker, the valley-like area was created thousands of years ago when "massive gypsum and salt formations several hundred feet below the surface" of the earth dissolved and collapsed. The area looks almost bowl-shaped today.
Bison, or buffalo, have been reintroduced to the almost 2,000-acre prairie preserve, and intrepid tourists are warned not to leave the safety of their cars when the bison are near the graveled road.
The spring-fed pool called St. Jacob's Well lies approximately 1.7 miles from the highway entrance, and is surrounded by large cottonwood trees and limestone rock. A path leads down to the serene pool, which is said to have been used by roving Native Americans as well as drovers bringing cattle from Texas up to the Kansas railroads in the late 1800s. Legend has it that the pool, which geologists believe to be about 60 feet deep, has never gone dry, even during the harsh days of the "Dirty 30s."
Today, the bison are fenced away from the pool, and birds and small animals come there for water. Tourists who elect to take the pathway down to the pool are cautioned about poison ivy growing near its edges.
In spite of taking a couple of precautions (don't pet the buffalo and don't touch those three-leafed plants), a side trip off Highway 283 to explore this scenic prairie area is "well" worth it.
It was first dubbed Manning Station in 1887 – named after the conductor of the train, according to a Clark County history book.
The name changed to Acres in 1889 when it was discovered there was a railroad station by the same name on the line from Great Bend to Scott City, according to a writings of Isaiah Burket, one of the county’s earliest pioneers. A woman who was heading to the other Manning found herself in Clark County, instead.
“Stepping from the train at this little flag station, she looked about and said ‘Nothing but Acres,’ and from that day the place has been known as Acres,” Burket wrote.
Acres had the freight train to move cattle, grain, feed and coal and a passenger train to carry people, groceries and mail. The first post office was established in 1909, according to the Kansas State Historical Society.
Businesses included a hotel, general store, lumberyard and blacksmith. There also were at least a couple elevators at Acres.
The 1910 census reported a population of 30.
Posted by Amy Bickel at 12:22 PM
CLARK STATE FISHING LAKE
Clark State Lake - All photos by Jim Mason
Approaching through flat farmlands and pasturelands, visitors are pleasantly surprised to discover Clark State Fishing Lake nestled in the deep Bluff Creek canyon. Several short drives or walks, on both sides of the lake, provide scenic vistas of this rugged western Kansas treasure.
The mixed grass prairie hilltops and canyon sides are dominated by yucca and aromatic sumac. Burrows of kangaroo rats are seen under the yucca clumps and along the roadside soil banks. You may spot coyote tracks in the dust; watch for these wily predators in early morning and late evening. Interesting reptiles include collared and Texas horned lizards and western rattlesnakes. Lark sparrows are found along the roads, and rock wrens find suitable nesting habitat along the steep canyon walls.
At the far northeast corner of the lake is the Jay R. Wood Memorial Nature Trail, which crosses Bluff Creek on this bridge and then makes a loop through tall cottonwood bottomlands. Red-headed woodpeckers, white-breasted nuthatches, and other woodland birds are found along the trail. Poison ivy is prevalent in the undergrowth, so those who are sensitive should beware.
The lake is attractive to ducks and geese, and ospreys are common during the fall migration. Herons, gulls, and terns are also seen. During summer, both eastern and western kingbirds nest in the campground trees and noisily defend their territories.
The high peak seven or eight miles northwest of Ashland was Named "Mt. Jesus" by Major Inman in 1868. In October of the year, Gen Custer with his command, left Fort Dodge and started south through the unexplored region to open a trail and establish Camp Supply. One foggy morning as Gen Custer and Major Inman were riding in front of the column, they struck this break, and when half way up it Gen. Custer turned and inquired, "What is this?" "It is MT. Jesus," was Inman's Reply, thus giving it a name connected with the history of our country it should always be retained.
taken from: Clark Co Clipper 1886 p4 c4