Fool Chief's Village

Fool Chief's Village (HM28LG)

Location: Topeka, KS 66618 Shawnee County
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Country: United States of America
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N 39° 5.556', W 95° 44.933'

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The Kansa, for whom the state is named, once occupied 20 million acres of land in eastern and northern Kansas. In 1825 the U.S. government reduced the lands to a reservation west of Topeka. In 1846 tribe members were sent to a 256,000 acre reservation near Council Grove and by 1872 they were forced onto 137 acres in Oklahoma. Today they are known as the Kaw Nation.

Near this site was a Kansa village with a population between 700 and 800. Occupied between 1828 and 1844 it included 80 bark-covered houses, about 30 feet in diameter with a central hearth. It was the largest of four nearby villages. The leader of this village was Fool Chief (Gahíge Wadáyinga). Gahíge means "chief;" Wadáyinga means "brave and courageous even to rashness."

The villagers had increasing contact with European and American goods and customs. They planted corn, beans, and squash and also had wheat or barley and domestic horses and hogs of European origin. The village was abandoned after the 1844 Kansas River flood.

Between 2006 and 2013 the site was excavated before the reconstruction of the intersection of Menoken Road and U.S. 24, which buried most of the site.
HM NumberHM28LG
Placed ByThe State of Kansas
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Monday, June 18th, 2018 at 4:01pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)15S E 262261 N 4330650
Decimal Degrees39.09260000, -95.74888333
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 39° 5.556', W 95° 44.933'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds39° 5' 33.36" N, 95° 44' 55.98" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)785
Closest Postal AddressAt or near US-24, Topeka KS 66618, US
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