Today in 1873, the town of Ulysses, Kansas was first established.
But it wasn’t where you’ll find the modern day town of Ulysses, Kansas.
Less than two decades after putting itself on the map, Ulysses moved several miles away.
It was established in southwestern Kansas, in an area that had been home to Native nations including the Pawnee, Osage, Arapaho and Comanche.
The town was named after then-President Ulysses S. Grant (and the surrounding county was named Grant County).
A decade and a half after its founding, Ulysses was home to 2,000 people.
It had its own bank, schoolhouse, newspapers, restaurants, hotels.
So the local leaders figured their community should serve as the county seat.
Ulysses did end up winning that title, but there was a catch.
The town had borrowed heavily to build some of the buildings that had won it the county seat.
Plus it had spent a lot of money lobbying to win the county seat designation.
Economic downturns and crop failures toward the end of the 19th Century made the situation worse.
By the early part of the 20th Century, the population of Ulysses had fallen from 2,000 to about 40.
And the town owed tens of thousands of dollars to its boldholders, with no real way to pay it all off.
So, in 1909, the remaining Ulyssesians made a choice: rather than dig their financial hole deeper and deeper, they would move.
And not just the people: they put some of their buildings on skids and started a new version of their community several miles away.
What they called “New” Ulysses is still a community today.
The only sign of “Old” Ulysses is a historic sign that tells visitors, hey, if you’re looking for the town that used to be here, they went thataway.
Today in 1928, the birthday of Mister Rogers!
Data wizard Owen Phillips once made a special chart that shows, in chronological order, the colors of every cardigan Fred Rogers wore on Mister Rogers Neighborhood, from 1969 until 2001.
Old Ulysses, Kansas (Legends of Kansas)